Seafarers used this path to avoid having to sail around the treacherous Lands End Peninsula, from Trencom Hill you get amazing views of the whole area and the incredible sight of St Michaels Mount looming in the distance at the end of your walk really gives you a sense of achievement.
Raegan - Walking Co-ordinator at Encounter
St Michaels Way
St Michaels Way
The St Michaels Way - Inland Return Option from Penzance to St Ives
History of the Trail
The St Michaels Trail is an inland coast to coast Pilgrim's route perfect for those wanting to complete a circular walk from Penzance or St Ives around the Lands End Peninsular. The route is part of the much wider Santiago de Compostela Pilgrim's Way a highly symbolic and significant European Cultural Route that follows the pathway of Pilgrim's and their Saints. Landing from Ireland at Lelant close to St Ives Pilgrim's crossed Cornwall by land to avoid the treacherous seas round Land End. Leaving the UK at the breathtaking island of St Michaels Mount which was formally an important port, the route continued on through France over the Pyrenees and finished at St James's Shrine in Santiago Northern Spain.
The St Michaels Way Route Description
Leaving Penzance it’s an easy start to your walking following the national cycleway (or the pebble beach if you prefer) around the sheltered and striking Mounts Bay. At Marazion you will take in Cornwall’s iconic image – the fairytale looking St Michaels Mount which dominates everything here, a Benedictine Priory, fortress and a major port for tin and copper and that’s only half its story - you can visit by wandering down its cobbled causeway at low tide of take a ferry boat if the water is in. Those who want to spend as much time as possible visiting this stunning island can opt to stay overnight in Marazion instead of Penzance and see the Mount and its causeway at all stages of tide and sunlight - just tell us when you book.
This is the start of the St Michaels Way and you now turn inland to cross Cornwall's interior. The first section follows the Red River through Marazion Marshes, a well known RSPB site for aquatic birds and the rare Cetti's warbler. At the village of Ludgvan you find the White Hart Inn and St Pauls Church both worth exploring for different reasons! Medieval pilgrims gathered here at the Church to wait for a guide to find the route through to St Michaels Mount and help them avoid the robbers that were prolific in the wooded marshes.
The next section crosses several streams with pretty, meadow sided valleys. Fording the Red river once more, a very steep climb on a path through wilder and more gorse ridden landscapes heading towards the imposing rocky summit of Trencrom hill ahead. The summit is slightly off the official path but is a breath taking short detour.
Trencrom Hill at 550ft is one of the finest viewpoints in Cornwall and a great spot for those completing the Lands End Circle as you see much of the last 4 days walking from here. Stunning views to St Ives and onto Zennor Head one way and out past Mousehole towards Lands End the other. Trencrom was another Cornish Hill Fort and on the ramparts hut circles can still be seen as slight hollows. Legend is that The Trencrom Giant and his cousin at St Michaels Mount created the massive mounds of boulders hereabouts in sporting boulder fights.
A quick drop to the golden sands of Carbis Bay brings you to meet the Coast Path once more and a particularly pleasant stroll alongside St Ives Bay to end up back in St Ives with your circle of the Wild West of Cornwall now complete.
Pricing On This Route
This route is often walked as part of a circular route from St. Ives or Penzance, around Lands End. As such, pricing can vary a great deal. Please contact us or request a quote for more details on pricing.
Our prices include -
- Your choices of good quality en-suite B&B, Inn and small hotel accommodation with full breakfast (where available), together with upgrade options.
- Detailed walking route planning and ongoing support from specialist walking advisors from your enquiry through to the end of the walk
- A full booking administration and holiday management service including information on travel to and from your walking routes
- Secure and reliable daily luggage transfers between accommodations
- The best available maps & guidebooks along with your own personal detailed route notes & itinerary posted to you whether you are based in the UK or overseas
Please see below for six factors which affect your quoted price -
1 - The time of year you are walking - The low season (outside of May to September) is generally cheaper than the peak months.
2 - How early you book. Cheaper accommodation tends to book out first so to get the best prices and choice of accommodation we recommend you book as early as you can. Bookings open for the season the previous summer.
3 - Which routes and areas you choose - Cornwall, South Devon and Dorset are the more expensive regions while Wales, Somerset, North Devon and Dartmoor tend to offer better prices. We also often run seasonal special offers on certain routes so ask if these would be of interest.
4 - Type of accommodation - You can choose to upgrade to luxury hotels or downgrade to basic B&B's and we will try to match your walk to your budget. Quotes will show standard options and the costs for any upgrades so you can pick and choose to suit your plans.
5 - The number of walkers - rates are generally based on 2 walkers - the more walkers the cheaper prices get as we split the costs of providing the walk between the group.
6 - Luggage Transfers - our quotes include two prices - with and without luggage transfers so if you want to keep the costs down you can choose to carry your own luggage to avoid those charges.
If you want to try to get the lowest prices let us know your budget - we can advise honestly and openly what is possible - we don't want to see anyone unable to walk the routes due to costs.
To request a quote costs nothing and there is no commitment to book - so do try us! We usually have quotes emailed back to you within a few days and these documents are very detailed with accommodation choices, website links to the accommodations, route descriptions, daily walking grade and mileage, travel info to the trail and of course a guaranteed price to consider. All for the specific walk YOU want.