Porthcurno is a small town located on the West Coast of Cornwall in the UK, and used to be a very important place on the map. What was once the centre of world telecommunication is now a popular tourist area with a number of attractions, including beautiful beaches and a number of museums including the Porthcurno Telegraph Museum which serves as a testament to the area’s past. If you’re thinking of visiting Porthcurno for the first time, read on to discover more about the area’s attractions.
Porthcurno Telegraph Museum
The Telegraph Museum in Porthcurno records the history of the telegraph and the tunnels built during the Second World War that were built to house and defend the telegraph station. Porthcurno proved an ideal site for a cable landing with its sandy beach that was protected from the adjacent headland. Sir John Pender established the Falmouth-Gibraltar-Malta Telegraph Company in 1876, after watching the first telegraph message be transmitted from a hut above the beach in June 1870. During the Second World War Porthcurno became an obvious enemy target as it was a major cable station. Tunnels were cut into the cliffs by local tin miners in order to house the communications operations, a project that took ten months to complete. The Telegraph Museum showcases these tunnels and is an excellent attraction for anybody eager to learn more about the area’s history.
The Minack Open Air Theatre
One of the most beautiful settings in the world, the Minack Open Air Theatre in Porthcurno is a must see for anybody visiting the area. It was constructed in the 1930’s by a girl who lived in the house behind the structure, and the Minack Theatre now houses the Rowena Cade Exhibition which showcases the amazing story of how a girl who enjoyed a privileged upbringing built the famous theatre with her own hands. Today the theatre is still a venue for world-famous theatrical groups, with a number of plays, operettas and musicals on show for seventeen weeks each summer from May to September.
Located just three miles from Porthcurno, Land’s End with its rugged cliffs and spectacular views is the mainland England’s most westerly point and is also the most visited outdoor tourist attraction in Cornwall. Land’s End is the meeting point of the two sections of the Coastal Footpath, where the north and south coasts meet and the Altantic Ocean stretches beyond the horizon, eventually meeting the coasts of America. The Coastal Footpath route covers over 500 miles along the coast from Poole Harbour in Dorset to the Bristol Channel, and is the longest continuous footpath in the whole of Britain. On a clear day the spectacular cliffs of Land’s End offer beautiful views of the Isles of Sicily that can be seen on the horizon.
Have you visited Porthcurno? Which attractions would you recommend to others planning on visiting for the first time? If you’d like to tell us all about your favourite things to do in Porthcurno, we’d love to hear from you in the comments.