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Holywell Bay

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Holywell Bay

Holywell Bay is one of Cornwalls most beautiful family beaches. With its towering sand dunes, trickling stream and the stunning Gul rocks you are sure to be blown away by the beauty of the area. Due to its location on the north coast of Cornwall, Holywell is a fantastic beach for surfers of all abilities and has lifeguards patrolling the beach every day throught out the summer from mid May until the end of September. For those wishing to take to the sea for the first time Holywell Bay School of Surf offers surfing lessons for all abilities and is based on the beach at the Lifeguard hut. Equally fun & a little less challenging than surfing is body boarding, a sport which the whole family can enjoy! holywell surf RNLI Lifeguards patrol the beach daily between mid May and the end of September from 10am to 6pm. They offer invaluable advice about the daily conditions. In addition to setting out red and yellow flags marking out the safe bathing area they have black & white flags marking a safe surfing area where they can keep an eye on beginner surfers. Holywell Bay also has a Surf Life Saving Club which was formed to patrol the beach before the days of professional lifeguards and now trains local youngsters in beach safety and life saving skills. The beach has grown in popularity since the early 1930's. It is one of the first beaches in the country if not the first where Malibu stand up surfing was tried. The earliest film of this is by Lewis Rosenberg who built his own Malibu after seeing pictures of Hawaiian surfers at the cinema and brought it to Holywell Bay to try it out. The film can be seen on You Tube, 'Lewis Rosenberg 9.5 mm. films part 2' it shows a lot of Holywell Bay beach and the early attempts at surfing. It also shows Penna's Tea Rooms where 'for a charge of 1/6d a sumptuous tea with splits, Cornish cream and Saffron cake' could be obtained. They were in the building opposite to what is now the Treguth Inn. The film is fascinating insight into holidaying in the early 1930's but beware the opening sequence has a few seconds of nude frolicking on the beach; presumably they were the only ones there! holywell shipwreck Walking along the beach at low tide one passes a wreck; the remains of the SS. Francia an Argentinean coaster which had a cargo of coal and was wrecked in 1917, on hitting the shore it broke its back and was not able to be refloated, parts of it were salvaged by traction engine but a lot was left behind. On reaching the cliffs at the far end of the beach it is worth looking for the Holywell, from which the bay takes its name and which was reputed to have healing powers, its waters were 'thought to offer relief from fluxes and other disorders'. It is in one of the caves but the rocks can be very slippery so be careful, if you would like full directions please ask us when you arrive. The whole area is a photographer's paradise with abundant wildflowers and wildlife on the dunes and also sea life in the rock pools. Seals can often be spotted from the cliffs, and Holywell also attracts the occasional pod of dolphins. There are marvelous walks along the cliff coastal paths on either side of Holywell Bay and views from the cliffs are spectacular in all directions. A large area of the beach and cliffs belongs to the National Trust and the views at Holywell were voted the fourth favorite view in the UK in a poll of its members in 2008.


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