Mawnan Smith Circular Walk Mawnan Smith Circular Walk Mawnan Smith Circular Walk Mawnan Smith Circular Walk

Mawnan Smith Circular Walk

Mawnan Smith Circular Walk

A walk from Mawnan Smith through sub-tropical gardens along the banks of the Helford River via the Budock Vean Hotel.

Starting at the Red Lion Inn in Mawnan Smith, through farmland and along the tranquil banks of the Helford River.

Leave the village by Carwinnion Road with the pub on your right. Turn right onto a tarmac path immediately past the Field Place houses.

At the end of this path, cross the road and go over a stile beside fencing and along a path to a stile into a field. Follow the fields through Higher and Lower Penpol, crossing a series of stiles. You’ll meet Anna Marie Lane at Anna Marie Creek.

At this point you can choose to follow the footpath or the road, bearing left towards the Budock Vean Hotel. Continue to the road junction then follow the bridleway past the entrance to Trebah Gardens Follow the clear track across the field and then the wooded path downhill to the beach at Durgan.

Turn left up the road and where it bends away from the coast go over the stile to the right of a gate ahead, into the National Trust property at Bosloe.

Follow the coast path to the boat house at Port Saxon. Turn left by the gate and follow the path up through the Carwinnion Valley signed to Mawnan Smith, ignoring any side tracks. The path goes to an unnamed road.

Continue along this track to come out onto the road by the entrance to Carwinnion Garden. Turn left and follow the road back to the village.

Starting Point: Mawnan Smith

Distance: 4 miles

Duration: 2 hours

Grading: Easy to moderate

End Point: Circular walk

On the way: Helford River, Sub-topical gardens

Download this walk

Walk Map

Detailed walk information

Car drivers can park in the public carpark opposite the Red Lion Pub.

Starting from the Red Lion pub in Mawnan Smith walk up the road nearest the square with the pub on your right. After Field Place houses turn right along a tarmac path. This brings you to the main road. Opposite, on the other side of the main road, in between the houses, is a footpath. Walking between the houses it takes you to a stile that opens out into the fields behind the houses. Follow it down and across the fields along a leat. With the watercourse directly on your right the path (often muddy) takes you to a small road. Turn right and immediately left at the house. This is Higher Penpol. Follow the path through a gate and subsequent fields to Lower Penpol. At the farm veer left with the farm track until you reach a T-junction.

To the left is the road up to Budock Vean Hotel. Alternatively turn left and immediately right into Anna Marie Lane and take the first kissing gate on your left up the hill. Anna Marie Pender was the daughter of the owner of the nearby copper and silver mine. It flooded too many times and became unworkable. There are wonderful views at the top of the hill (see photo above right). The entrance to the Budock Vean Hotel is on your right. With 60 acres of landscaped garden and golf course the Budock Vean has been a hotel for many years with its gardens stretching down to Port Navas Creek. Vean means smaller or younger in Cornish. 

Walk past the entrance and up to the crossroads. Take the footpath opposite, which goes past the entrance to Trebah Gardens. The café is free and there are toilets here also. The gardens are well worth a visit as it is a subtropical garden with many rarities but an entrance fee is required. Trebah beach is one of the few embarkation points for the D Day landings of the 2nd World War.

Walk past the entrance, down into the woods past Glendurgan gardens to Durgan. This former fishing village was built with the help of the Fox family who owned both Trebah and Glendurgan. They added the school amongst other buildings. Head left out of the village up the hill. Keep on the road for 200 metres and take a path to your left before the bend in the road into a wood of large pines. 200 metres up, the gate to Bosloe Manor is across the road. Take the gate into it and follow the path sticking to the right hand path through ornamental gardens with a variety of trees. This will take you to a gate that opens out to a grand view of the Helford river (picture page 1, top left). Keeping to the coast path (you are on the South West Coast Path) the next beach is Porth Saxon. Skim a few slate stones and have a look at the concrete look out shelter, which was there to protect the river from invasion. The sleepy, quiet Helford River was also the centre of Allied Intelligence in the 2nd World War.

From the beach go up the path which is next to the kissing gate at the boathouse entrance on the beach. Keeping to the right hand path after 200 metres go through the kissing gates, which take you through more woodland for a mile or so before you get to a track that leads to the main road at Carwinion Gardens. You might have noticed bamboo bushes for the last 100 metres of the path before you hit the track.  At the road turn left and return to Mawnan Smith.

Public transport information

Bus from Falmouth is the number 35.

Nearest Toilets and Nearest Disabled Toilets

Public toilets in Mawnan Smith opposite the Red Lion pub. One lavatory in Durgan. Toilets at Trebah Garden café.

Nearest Car parks and Nearest Car Parks with disabled provision

Car park in the square opposite the Red Lion pub or street parking, please be thoughtful.

Nearest refreshments 

Cornish Maid Café and Red Lion pub in Mawnan Smith and Budock Vean Hotel.