Great UK Family Road Trip -Minack Theatre & St Michael’s Mount

Day 04: Penzance → Marazion. Max 14ºC to Min 11ºC.

Minack Theatre

We had an eventful day filled with fun, love and explorations today! Our first destination was Minack Theatre in Porthcurno, which is rather near to Land’s End in Cornwall, England.

We were amazed at the grandeur of the world famous open-air Minack Theatre. Set against the backdrop of the spectacular panorama of Porthcurno Bay, this open-air amphitheatre was hand-carved into the granite cliffside, with its intricate design of the sloping gully that is adorned with gorse and heather that blossom so beautifully in autumn. The glorious gardens add a dash of colour to the otherwise greyish facade of the Minack Theatre. It was simply too beautiful to behold.

Minack Theatre

The Porthcurno Bay overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.

The Porthcurno Bay overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.

Among the rows of stone seats in the theatre bearing the name of a play or performance, each carefully carved into the concrete when it was wet, we found one that has “Elizabeth” on it. We showed it to Little E and sat beside it, she was simply delighted to see her own name carved onto the seat!

While at the theatre, we also had some fun creating panoramic photos, one of which is seen below, “Which one is Daddy?”

Which one is Daddy?

And of course, family photos that are to be treasured as time passes…

JRE at Minack Theatre

… including this precious one of the Grannies with their beloved grandchildren.

The Grannies with the grandchildren

Over the past 80 years, the living theatre has evolved into today’s professionally-equipped venue that incorporates the latest technology in lighting and sound. The Minack Theatre welcomes more than 80,000 people every year to their performances and attracts more than 150,000 visitors like us who come to experience the breathtaking views and learn more about the story. One thing is obvious: the atmosphere of this unique theatre still reflects the vision of its founder Rowena Cade who created one of the most beautiful theatres in the world.

Merry Maidens

On our way home, we were delighted to have found the Merry Maidens, which are 19 granite stones that form a perfect circle in one part of the wide prairies in Penzance, near the stonehouse where we were staying…

Merry Maidens

There is a fascinating legend associated with the Merry Maidens: As the tale goes, 19 pretty maidens who were on their way to Sunday vespers couldn’t resist the beautiful sounds of music played by two pipers, and wandered into the field to laugh and dance to their music. But as they were in full flow, a mighty thunderbolt came out of nowhere and turned them all to stone for the sin of dancing on The Sabbath Day.

JE at the Merry Maidens

We were thrilled to have found this site on our way home! That was J and Little E posing with the Merry Maidens before we left the still-erected cornish stone circle that have inspired folk tales of dancing maidens turned to stone for merrymaking on the Sabbath.

St. Michael’s Mount

Another highlight of our family road trip today was visiting St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall, England.

St Michael's Mount

This was the view of the iconic castle from where we parked our car.


We walked a fair bit of distance from the car park, along the streets of Marazion, and onto the pebbly coast.


Here were JMIDM tackling the rock-ribbed terrain in their gumboots…


That was Bella exploring the collection of puddles by herself, in her striking yellow gumboots, with St Michael’s Mount in the background.

Due to the high tide, we couldn’t walk across the bay from Marazion. To reach the island, we had to take a boat ride. The boat ride was made exciting by the choppy waves from the incoming tide.

Dock at St Michael's Mount

We reached the island within brief minutes, and were greeted with the amazing view of the small village town that is adrift from the mainland.

Bella and Daniella at St Michael's Mount

Upon embarking on the castle quiz offered by the ticketing counter, it took little time for Bella and Daniella to track down the giant’s stone heart, embedded within the steep cobbled slopes leading up to the castle. It was sheer pleasure watching our children seek out the clues in every room, while also learning what makes the castle so special. The Mount is indeed made for imagination and adventure for all ages!

Thanks to Shen for helping us capture such a great family photo with the castle in the background. How we wished we could eliminate the photobomber behind us!

JRE on St Michael's Mount

Our family photo of all 11 of us at the fort canons.

Family photo at the fort canons

Treading on ancient cobbles laid upon medieval pathways and hiking up the ascent till we entered the iconic castle, the views were breathtakingly refreshing regardless where our lines of sight landed.

We admired the distinguished castle, peered through the fort towers, stooped beneath ancient doors, wandered along century-old corridors, etc.

Medals won for completing the castle quiz!

The children dancing and posing with their medals for completing the castle quiz!

The children even won medals for completing the castle quiz as they explored and discovered the details within the castle. Thank God for the lovely day for us to unearth a rich vein of history that flows through time and tide on St Michael’s Mount.

We returned home for a wonderful home-cooked meal of wine-infused roast pork served with a unique mustard sauce prepared by Shen, our popular honey mustard glazed salmon, Mum’s beef patties and blanched lady fingers.

The dinner was lip-smackingly awesome, and we were so blessed to be able to enjoy this feast on our last night in this rustic village stone house tucked away in Penzance.

Dinner at the table

A family who dines together, stays together.

May the Lord remember us and bless us; and let God bless all who fear Him, both the small and the great. May the Lord give increase to both us and our children! May we be blessed by the Lord, who made heaven and earth! (Psalm 115:12-15)

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