The Golitha Falls are a series of spectacular cascades and waterfalls along a section of the River Fowey as it makes its way through the ancient oak woodland of Draynes Wood. It is one of the best known beauty spots on Bodmin Moor.
As the river flows through the woods the scenery varies, from wide wooded glades to the steep sided, craggy gorge where the falls are at their most dramatic. Over the course of the falls the river descends 90 metres meaning the water is always fast flowing. However, to capture Golitha Falls at their most spectacular you should try to visit after heavy rain on the moors.
Golitha Falls is a National Nature Reserve (NNR) managed by English Nature and has also been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSI) on account of its woodland flora. As well as the usual lovely woodland flowers such as bluebells and wood anemone the reserve is home to over 120 species of bryophytes (moss) and nearly 50 species of lichens.
In addition to plant-life the woodlands are home to some less commonly spotted wildlife; bats such as the lesser horseshoe, brown long-eared and nactule have been seen here along with dormice. The river itself is home to various fish including salmon and sea trout, whilst otters are frequently seen here.
If all that isn't enough the River Fowey is also designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (ANOB) for good reason.
The falls are situated just over a mile west of the village of St Cleer and a little further from the market town of Liskeard. There is a car park half a mile's walk along the river at Draynes Bridge along with toilets. You will also find the Inkie's Smokehouse BBQ trailer parked up here most days serving ice creams, drinks and of course, great charcoal grilled food.
As well as being a lovely walk through the woods in itself, Golitha Falls is in prime walking country. Just off the "Two Valleys Walk" which begins at nearby St Neot before passing through the valleys of the Rivers Loveny and Fowey as well as over the high moor at Berry Down.