My day out: St Michael’s Mount
St Michael’s Mount is probably Cornwall’s most iconic visitor attraction. This tidal island at Mount’s Bay is most closely associated with the seaside town of Marazion and our guests flock there all year round. I thought it about time I went and found out a little bit about it myself.
We had some friends visiting Cornwall who hadn’t been there before either and so we had the perfect excuse for a day trip to St Michael’s Mount. Based purely on the number of tourists who visit the island each year, I expected the paths to be well kept and the walk and climbs to be relatively easy. I got that bit wrong!
No Saturday visitors
Perhaps the most important thing to consider when visiting St Michael’s Mount is that it’s an inhabited island. Only to about 30 people but still this is their home. With the number of tourists descending on the area they have to retain an element of privacy. As such, it’s worth planning your visit.
The first example of this is that no visitors are allowed on the island at all on Saturdays. Secondly, some parts of the island are only open on specific days.
A family visit to Marazion
It’s fun for all but I wouldn’t recommend visiting St Michael’s Mount for people that have mobility issues. It may be a little tricky for families with small children and prams or buggies although there is a place to leave your prams at the bottom. You could always just explore the gardens though and not make the climb to the top. The climb to the castle and church was steep with cobbles and uneven steps, and there weren’t always handrails available.
It was fun getting the boat over and back – one way fares are £2.00 for adults and £1.00 for children. The island guides will let you know which landing point to use according to the tide. The ferry boats can take 12 passengers at a time. For children there is a sticker quest to do on the way around the castle and church, which is actually quite fun!
There are places to get food and drink if you don’t go armed with a picnic and we also discovered a shop where they had storytelling in the garden, which the kids loved.
I feel like we did a good recce of the site while learning a lot about it as well as how best to see it. I’m keen to again in the winter when it’s hopefully a bit quieter and on a dry day when you can walk the causeway.
Top tips for visiting St Michael’s Mount:
- Get yourself a National Trust membership
- Wear walking boots or trainers
- If you want to walk the causeway to/from then check the tide times
- Get there early as it gets so busy in peak season and the car parks are heaving
- Take lots of water/drinks and picnic