Monday 1 October 2012

Carnglaze Caverns, St Neot, Cornwall

We have been visiting Carnglaze Caverns for some years now, but the last two years Charlotte has been the perfect age for exploring the gardens. She's not quite so interested yet in the history of the caves.

The caves were once a slate mine, and you can go around 3 caverns that have been created by the miners, there is a natural lake in one cave with crystal clear water. You have to wear hard hats when in the caves, always a giggle when you look silly. It gets quite chilly and sometimes damp down there so a jumper and flat shoes are a must. There are quite a few steps, and its quite dark so not great with very young children as you will be carrying them.

The top cavern is known at the rum store as this is where the navy stored their rum during the second world war. Along one wall there is a collection of minerals from the south west. The main part of the cavern is often used as a concert venue due to the amazing acoustics, along another wall are hard hats signed by artists that have performed there, local, international and some famous names.
The caverns also have a wedding licence, you will see unlit tea lights dotted around, these are lit up for weddings and it must look truly magical all lit up, there is even a boat on the lake that can be used for weddings.
Carnglaze used to give organised tours around the caverns, but in recent years have gone for self guided tours, it would be hard to get lost, you are armed with a torch and map and you can follow the signs easily. There are information boards dotted around (and light switches if someone has turned some of the lights off) to read giving you an idea of what it would have been like working by candle light 200 years ago.
Above ground is Charlottes favourite part, the Enchanted Dell and gardens. Its a lovely walk through little paths that weave up the hill side above the caverns and then back round exiting at the car park. Along the way you will find lots of little fairies and woodland folk.

There is a number of picnic benches if you want to take some food on a lovely day and there are 2 lovely little gift shops to visit.

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