A few weeks ago we were guests at Trevella Park in Cornwall and having regular holidays in this beautiful county, we were keen to explore places new.
Perusing a magazine with days out I came across Cornwall Gold which is billed as a unique visitor experience set in the tin mining landscape of Cornwall. The park set in 18 acres of beautifully landscaped grounds and admission and parking free of charge – as a family of 6, free is always a good number so we added it to our list of places to visit.
When you arrive you enter through the main jewellery showroom at which is home to Cornwall’s largest collection of jewellery. It is stunning, but not somewhere I would recommend taking young children as they were very quickly bored and making a noise so we headed outside rather quickly.
Cornwall Gold consists of lots of different buildings set around beautiful landscaped gardens, with each building housing a different activity.
- The Bear Works, where you can create, stuff and dress your very own bear
- Create and Paint Pottery where you can make your own pottery and then they then glaze and fire your masterpiece for you.
- Pick-a-Pearl where you can net your own oyster and have a pearl taken directly from it. They can then make this into a beautiful piece of jewellery with the help of the in-house pearl design team.
- Gem Scoop is all about rocks, fossils, minerals and gems and they offer a range of gem gifts is on offer with something for all ages and budgets
- A traditional nine-hole crazy golf course, each hole presenting different challenges.
- Piskie Panning lets you sift sand with a traditional gold pan to reveal gems and hidden treasures.
- Tolgus Tin Mine where you can see how they smelt tin ore extracted from the stream running through the park, witness the awesome power of the stamping machinery and learn about the ingenuity of the men who extracted tin from sand, mud and water.
With the exception of Tolgus Tin Mine, all these activities cost extra – a lot extra, so we decided to explore the tin mine.
I have to admit that I expected to go into a mine below the surface, but it was a museum. There were lots of signs dotted about explaining how things worked and some of the machines were switched on, but seeing them wobble didn’t translate into how men extracted the tin from mud.
The mine had the potential to be really interesting, but sadly it didn’t grab the attention of any of us.
The kids had much more fun exploring a small room at the back of the mine that was packed full of local artefacts.
Once out of the mine we gave the kids a choice of a game of Crazy Golf of panning for gold and they chose the panning for gold. We were given a traditional gold pan to sift the sand and reveal gems and hidden treasure which we got to take home and keep.
All in all, it was a very disappointing morning as Cornwall Gold is very heavy on pushing the product and not the experience.
As we left three coach loads of pensioners arrived for a day out, I think this location is better suited that generation sadly, despite efforts to make it more family friendly.