Not far from the popular Cornwall coastal village of Mevagissey, the castle and gardens are inspirational in Spring when a visit will especially delight gardeners and photographers.
The castle is superbly sited in a delightful, open, south facing valley location, just a short walk from Porthlune Cove. From this cove, the castle is framed by a backdrop of woods and in Spring, the pink and rose blossoms of mature Rhododendron and Magnolia trees; sweeping lawns and a large lake in the foreground complete the setting.
Home to a National Magnolia Collection the gardens are open to the public normally from February to early June when at their most spectacular. Gravel paths lead around the castle, through stone arches to terraces overlooking the estate and grounds and views across the countryside and out to sea. We enjoyed these gardens more than some of the more popular and widely advertised gardens we had seen on other visits to Cornwall.
An early owner of Caerhays was a passonate gardener and collected seed from newly discovered species of rhododendrons, magnolias, camellias and azealas and some of these unique specimens are mature now.
There are tearooms and a gift shop, with plant sales for those lucky enough to be able to take plants home.
We visited the castle in the morning on a lovely day walk from Portloe to Mevagissey along the South West Coastal Path. A particularly fine view of the castle and grounds can be had from the Public Footpath towards Tregavarras, only a few minutes walk uphill.
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