September has to be one of the best months to visit St Ives. Not just because the town’s music & arts Festival is in full swing (this year from the 8th – 22nd,) but as the kids are back at school, the holiday crowds have dropped off significantly. In September there is still plenty of sunshine and with the Gulf Stream temperatures can be even hotter than in July and August. The sea is usually warmer as it has been heated by the sun all Summer. Not high season anymore, accommodation prices have come down quite considerably.
The acclaimed St Ives artist Patrick Heron’s retrospective ends at the Tate Gallery on September the 30th. Stretching over 60 years of his life, the exhibition inhabits the gallery’s brand new extension and shows the full evolution of Heron’s iconic and vibrant abstract paintings. Starting on the 7th of September.
Nestled beneath the steep slopes of Porthminster Point, right on the beach with unbeatable and uninterrupted views across St Ives Bay to Godrevy Lighthouse is the Porthminster Cafe. This multi-award winning seafood café specialises in Mediterranean and Asian seafood cuisine and is an oasis of taste and visual beauty. Open daily for Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, this cafe is relaxed and friendly. If you’re not ready for a big meal – you can also just stop for a homemade patisserie and cup coffee from St Ives Small Batch Coffee Roasting Company. Sit back and enjoy the views, then walk it off with a stroll across the sand. Lovely!
Take in the changing seasonal colours by walking the St Michael’s Way pilgrim route, a 12.5 mile footpath from Lelant to St Michael’s Mount, near Penzance. This is the only footpath in Britain that is part of the designated European Cultural Route, a network of pilgrim routes that leads to St James Cathedral in Santiago de Compostela in northern Spain.
The Leach Pottery is celebrating 10 years since it reopened in 2018. During the September Festival, there will be talks hosted by The Leach Pottery at The St Ives Arts Club and Porthmeor Studios. If you fancy getting your hands dirty, there’s a half-day taster throwing session on September 27, but places are limited so you’ll need to book in advance.
If you wait until September when all the schools have gone back, the little train journey from St Erth to St Ives is not to be missed. The tiny train, normally just two coaches, runs right along the North Coast with views of all the coves and the Godrevy Lighthouse in the distance. The journey lasts 20 minutes each way and the views of the coastline and the little boats coming into the harbour as you round the corner and come into town are incredible. A ticket costs just £3 for a single, (you can stroll back to St Ives if you want to) or £4 for a cheap-day return. Parking at St Erth has been improved so it’s also a good alternative to trying to park in St Ives itself. Not feeling the long walk back, then get off at Lelant and walk the coastal path back to St Ives from there
For visitors along the north coastal path we highly recommend a stop in at Rosemergy tea garden, halfway between St Ives and St Just. Adjacent to the old Carn Galver tin mine engine house, September is the last month Rosemergy tea garden is open every day before closing for Winter. This is the perfect idyll to stop for a traditional cream tea in stunning Cornish surroundings.