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Cornwall Marine Directory

Mounts Bay

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Mariners know they've reached the splendid sailing ground of Mounts Bay when they sight one of Britain's most famous and enchanting landmarks – St Michael's Mount which presides over the shores of the bay keeping guard over the ports of Penzance and Newlyn a mere 10 miles or so from Land's End.


For lovers of adrenaline fuelled watersports there are excellent opportunities for surfing and windsurfing while sailing is also popular with regular competitions being held in a variety of dinghy classes. The Mount's Bay sailing club is based at the charming village of Marazion that is also the tidal gateway to St Michael's Mount that can be walked to at low tide.

mtbay_qtr_dinghyThe bay has seen top class dinghy sailing events as well as an array of other watersports. It is still popular with kitesurfers when the wind is favourable and there are great opportunities for surfers when the conditions are right.

Mounts Bay is lined with award-winning beaches with beautifully clear water. These beaches are ideal for families with lifeguard patrols throughout the peak summer season. They can also be good for surfing when the swell and wind conspire.

Undeniably magical, the rocky St Michael's Mount crowned by a medieval castle and church is the stuff of fairy tales. In the 1950s the mount, which is still the home of the St Aubyn family, was opened to the public after a partnership was formed with the National Trust. The Mount is now guarded as a national treasure and is a great place to visit either by boat or by foot from the mainland.

Standing 300 feet high, the settlement at its crest is part Benedictine priory established in the Eighth Century and part embattled castle. It has been the scene of several historic sieges including that of Henry de la Pomeroy who successfully captured it in 1195.

st_michaels_mount_and_boat_190_286_01As well as the magic that the Mount brings to the bay, this sailing ground is one of the last strongholds for the preservation of some of Cornwall's original lug-rigged fishing fleet. For centuries fishing, as well as mining, has kept people on the shores of Mounts Bay earning a living. Fishing was the key force behind the creation of harbours at Penzance, Mousehole, Newlyn and Porthleven indeed today Newlyn still lands the most fish by value in the UK.

Being one of the first landfalls for marine life in the Atlantic, Mounts Bay is often teaming with interesting marine life including dolphins, basking sharks, sunfish - even leatherback turtles have been seen here. Why not book yourself on a sea safari which will see you gliding across the turquoise waters, past secluded coves and high headlands in search of glimpses of Cornwall's marine wildlife. Check our database to find out more about the services on offer

Ashore, this part of Cornwall is strewn with prehistoric stone circles, standing stones and sites of ancient settlements. The legacy of more recent history is also starkly apparent in the form of imposing granite engine houses - part of Cornwall's mining heritage upon which the county's economy was founded.

These hills are home to many unspoiled walks taking in picturesque coves, unspoiled beaches and majestic cliffs with views over glorious sparkling seas. From the water it's easy to forget that this peninsula is so thin this far west that, with a good pair of walking boots - and a healthy pair of lungs - it's possible to walk to the north coast and back in the space of a day.
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