Via Ferrata is the perfect adrenaline adventure activity for a day out in Cornwall!
What is Via Ferrata?
I must admit, I’d never heard of the term ‘Via Ferrata’ before now, but apparently it means ‘iron path’ or ‘iron stairway’, and refers to the iron rungs and cables built into mountains to provide footholds and handholds for climbers while they’re attached to a harness. This type of climbing originated in the Alps for exploration, but has also been using in the First World War as a way to get to Italy, and today is known as a fun activity in its own right!
What do Via Ferrata Cornwall offer?
Built-in to a couple of old Cornish granite quarries, Via Ferrata Cornwall offers this exciting climbing experience alongside hire wire bridges, and even a zip-line too. The company also offer other activities in the quarries too, such as coasteering and canoeing, so there’s plenty to do for all levels of thrill-seekers.
If being on solid ground is more your thing, they also offer archery, camping, and have some beautiful nature trails to walk around near the quarries (in fact, we visited back in March to grab a drink from the cafe and walk the dogs around).
As well as individual activities, Via Ferrata Cornwall also offer private group sessions for birthday parties, or even corporate away days with lots of team-building activities too.
You get all ages doing the activities here; in our group we had a young boy, two teenagers, myself and my friend Liv (mid-twenties females), and a man as well – a real mix! It’s great for families, but they are also offering flexible options for working parents too in the summer holidays, and an ongoing ‘School Holiday’ club too.
Is there food & drink?
There is an amazing cafe on site run by The Cornish Barista (as I mentioned, we visited in March specifically to head to the cafe!) and I’d definitely recommend stopping in there for a coffee and a bite to eat. Their cakes and baked goods are INCREDIBLE! There are good vegan options too and an amazing view over the quarry from their under-cover seating area.
Liv and I arrived and instantly headed over to the cafe to fuel up with some delicious coffee and cake before getting started with a safety briefing from our instructor. We were in a group of 6 of us and everyone was excited to get going!
Once we had our harnesses on and we’d been taught how to clip onto and navigate the steel cables that would be supporting us through the climb, we headed down to the bottom of the quarry and over the bridges to begin our ascent along the cliff-face.
We spent the first few minutes getting to grips with the cables and clips and making sure we felt comfortable that we could dangle while attached to the harness and feel supported. Everything felt super safe thanks to our briefing and our instructor was always there to help and answer any questions as we went along.
As we climbed, we soon got to the high rope bridge… it was probably the favourite part for all of us, as it felt like doing a tight-rope for 70m across the quarry, high off the ground! It definitely had my heart racing.
Once off the high wire, we climbed to the top of the quarry and walked across to the next quarry for the second part of the adventure. This time we were scaling horizontally across the quarry to a height of about 20 meters, navigating more complicated cable sections as we went.
This part finished off with a zip wire across the quarry, which was so fun we did it twice!
Overall we had a great time and were both trying to think of excuses to come back again and bring other people – I’d definitely recommend it both for families and for a fun day out with friends.
+ Via Ferrata is a social enterprise!
All profits that Via Ferrata Cornwall make go to their charity, BF Adventure, which supports local disadvantaged children and young people through outdoor education and experiences. Each year, the charity works with around 4000 young people, including children in care. 10% of the profits from the cafe also go towards this :)
To find out more and book your adventure, head to the Via Ferrata website.
*This was a complimentary experience provided in exchange for a review, but all opinions are my own – we had so much fun :)