The section between Bude and Boscastle, another stretch of around sixteen miles, is one of the more remote sections of the path. Fascinating geology, ancient seaside settlements and far-reaching views characterise a walk that is demanding but well worth the effort.
Across Widemouth Bay, a somewhat overdeveloped sandy beach popular with swimmers and surfers and the last place with facilities until Crackington Haven, and on to Dizzard Point, managed by the National Trust, where there is a large area of ancient stunted oak wood.
On along the cliff to Crackington Haven, an ancient seaside hamlet squashed between impressively dark 400 foot cliffs at the mouth of a lush river valley. There are two cafes, a pub and a basic hotel in Crackington Haven, where smuggling in the coves on both sides has been recorded since 1342.
The path winds up a massive landfall at Rusey Cliff, which is the site of a major geological fault zone and tends to be overgrown with rampant brambles and gorse in the summer months.
Below Penally Point is a landform known locally as the Devil’s Bellows. This is essentially a blow hole from which a horizontal jet of water shoots across Boscastle harbour around an hour each side of low tide.
Boscastle was brought to national media attention in 2004 after flash floods destroyed much of the ancient and well-preserved harbour village, most of which is owned and managed by the National Trust. It is a spectacularly atmospheric place, almost perfectly restored since the flooding. Nestling at the mouth of what is effectively a mini-fjord, Boscastle is the perfect place to rest after a long day's hiking