St Michael’s Mount is a must-see attraction in Cornwall if you love history and castles. The location on a small island accessible at low tide by an underwater causeway is part of what makes it such a ‘magical’ place.
My family come from the nearby Isles of Scilly so are somewhat ‘experts’ in the whole region in general.
St Michael’s Mount Causeway & Tides
The first thing you need to know about visiting is the tides.
The small island where St Michael’s Mount is located is only accessibly by land for a few hours every day when it’s low tide.
There is a causeway made of granite stone that connects the island to the mainland and the town of Marazion (Cornwall’s oldest town).
You can get across and back by small local boats but walking across the causeway is one of the highlights of the visit.
The best is to plan for walking across the causeway to visit and then take the boat back (or vice-versa) so you don’t need to rush.
There is a chance the tides won’t cooperate with your plans though so then take the boat both ways.
Walking across the St Michael’s Mounts causeway at low tide.
St Michael’s Mount Castle
Once you’re across the causeway you will be by the small harbour area where the ticket office is.
St Michael’s Mount is a popular tourist place so if you get there an hour after they have opened it can be busy.
Try to get there at opening time for a much more peaceful experience.
That’s what we did.
Walking up to the castle.
There’s a good information room before going up to the castle itself to learn more about the history of St Michael’s Mount.
Up at the castle before going inside.
It’s a short 5-minute walk from the small harbour to the castle itself but be careful as the walkway can be slippy in parts.
Before going inside the castle there are a few cannons to see and makes a nice photo with Penzance across the sea in the background.
With some of the cannon of the castle outside.
Taking a break once inside the castle on a stone bench.
There are lots of rooms in the castle each with its own history and purpose.
One of the castles many rooms.
The most impressive room in the castle is the dining room.
It’s large with beautiful wooden beams on the ceiling and various plaques and paintings around the walls.
Enjoying the view out of the windows from the castles main dining room.
Inside the castles dining room.
After scrambling around inside the castle for a while you come to the outside part at the top.
It’s here you get great views from the ramparts and find the entrance to the castle’s chapel.
Outside the castle on the top.
On the castle ramparts with Sidra (my wife) getting an excellent view out to sea.
The view across to the oldest town in Cornwall, Marazion, with the causeway at low tide visible.
Walking along the ramparts.
Inside the castle’s chapel.
There is one room where Sidra really wanted to sit down. It’s where the queen sat for tea during a visit. Oh to be royal for a few minutes of time!
A room in the castle where the Queen has sat on a visit.
Unfortunately, you can’t pretend to be royal and sit down on the furniture. Grrrrr.
After a few more small rooms and hallways you end up at the exit where there are several more cannon to see.
Walking through one of the hallways with historic photos on the wall of St Michael’s Mount.
Exiting the castle and seeing more cannons overlooking the sea to Penzance in the distance.
There is a garden to see on St Michael’s Mount as well although I didn’t visit this as my main interest was the castle and you had to pay extra for the gardens.
I left St Michael’s Mount by the boat as the tide had come up and the causeway was covered by the sea.
Leaving St Michaels Mount by the small local ferry boat.
Visiting St Michael’s Mount was one of my favourite things to do in Cornwall.
I hope you get there if you are ever in that part of the world!
Getting to St Michael’s Mount
This is a fun part of the trip to St Michael’s Mount for sure!
The tides part I mentioned at the beginning of the post so I’ll skip over that part.
If you have your own transport then it’s an easy several minute drive from Penzance to Marazion where you can then connect by the small boats if the tide is high, or walk the causeway at low tide.
A taxi from Penzance to Marazion will cost around 10 pounds.
There are regular buses going to Marazion from the train station bus stop in Penzance.
Alternatively, you can walk from Penzance to Marazion (and vice-versa)
St Michael’s Mount Tides:
This is the official site where they have up to date information on the time of the tides to get to St Michael’s Mount.
Visiting St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall
St Michael’s Mount is a must-do attraction in Cornwall (if you have the time) especially if you plan to visit Lands End/St Ives etc.
If you’re heading to The Isles of Scilly (a few hours by ferry from Penzance) then try and visit St Michael’s Mount for a few hours before going the day before you leave (there won’t be enough time the day of the ferry as it leaves 9 in the morning).
If you plan on staying in Penzance or Marazion you can find places to stay here:
If you want to explore more history in the area then take a look at the 15 best castles in Cornwall to visit.
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