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Sunset over Falmouth and the Carrick Roads estuary, with silhouettes of pine trees at Messack Point in the foreground
Sunset over Messack Point and the Carrick Roads, on Cornwall's Roseland peninsula | © National Trust Images/Harry Davies

Messack creek and woodland walk on the Roseland

Starting from the magical waterside churchyard at St Just in Roseland (Betjeman's 'most beautiful churchyard on earth'), explore the peninsula's winding wooded creeks, farmland and coast paths. From Messack Point, your reward for the climb will be far-reaching views across the Carrick Roads, including Pendennis Castle, Falmouth, Mylor and Restronguet.

Planning your walk

Please note that this trail starts at St Just in Roseland, about a 15-minute drive (5 miles) from Porth.

Total steps: 7

Total steps: 7

Start point

St Just in Roseland church car park (not NT), TR2 5JD. Grid ref: SW849356.

Step 1

From the car park, head towards the church and go through the lower lychgate. When you reach the creek, turn right and follow the path with the creek on your left-hand side. Continue along the footpath and at the fork take the lower creekside path. Continue along, crossing a stream and a private drive, bearing left to follow the waymarked path emerging above St Just Creek.

The Church at St Just, close to Porth Farm House, Roseland, Cornwall
St Just in Roseland church | © National Trust / Chris Lacey

Step 2

Continue up the creek with the water on your left. The head of the creek marks the start of Messack farmland. From the stile bear slightly right (waymarked to Turnaware Point), following the footpath up through the trees.

Step 3

At the top of the slope, bear right again, following the path along the edge of the field, through the kissing gate. Cross over the drive and take the path ahead, continuing through the next two fields, ignoring the gate to the 'upper path' and taking the 'waterside path' to the right. Go through the gate on your left and down into the valley.

Step 4

When you reach the water, turn left and head south along the path by the shoreline, through a wooded area. Continue along the waterside path.

The old oak tree in Messack Woods in the spring time
Old oak tree in Messack wood, Cornwall | © Lucy Honeychurch

Step 5

Just before Messack Point, walk up the slope behind the pine trees, through the gate and continue up the steep field to the summit.

Step 6

Bear right behind Messack House, signposted 'St Just via creekside path'. Go through a small gate beside a farm gate, following the fenced hedge on the right and on through the field. Go over the driveway and through the next field. Continue downhill until you cross a stream in a marshy glade.

Step 7

Emerge from the trees and follow the hedge around the field, continuing through more fields until you meet the head of St Just Creek. From here, retrace your steps back down the path to the church and to your starting point.

End point

St Just in Roseland church car park (not NT), TR2 5JD. Grid ref: SW849356.

Trail map

Ordnance Survey map of the Messack creek and woodland walk
Map of the Messack creek and woodland walk | © Crown copyright and database rights 2013 Ordnance Survey

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Get in touch

Porth, near Portscatho, Cornwall, TR2 5EX

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