Rosie & Jim's Travel Blog

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“Đà Nẵng me, Đà Nẵng... Bouncing across the Atlantic

The Eden Project

  |     |   Cornwall 2012   |   UK, Cornwall

For our first family holiday, we decided to take a different approach to normal and stay relatively close to home. We have been threatening to visit the Eden Project for at least the last 4 years, so we headed to Cornwall for the week after Easter.  We started our journey on Easter Monday, but to keep travel times short, we stayed with friends in Wellington Monday night where we were kindly fed Chinese food :smile:. With George around, there’s rarely any danger of having a long lie in so we were back on the road again by 08:30 Tuesday morning on route to the Eden Project. Contrary to the forecast, the weather was glorious so we were able to fully enjoy our drive down. On arrival, we were shepherded into the top car park and directed onto a bus, the first bus George has ever been on! The bus weaved down into the quarry where we got our first glimpse of the huge Biomes that house the artificial habitats of the Eden Project.

We started our day in the Core, which is the latest addition to the Eden Project. It is essentially an education centre with lots of hands on exhibits for learning about the environment, wildlife and plant life etc. The building is of a sustainable construction, highly insulated and very energy efficient. The roof has been build using the principle of ‘phyllotaxis’ which is the mathematical basis of how plants grow and looks amazing. It also houses a large photovoltaic array to generate electricity for the site.

The building is centred around Peter Randall-Page’s seed sculpture which was created from a single hunk of granite found at a local quarry. It is an incredible sculpture. It looks so simple, but it is geometrically perfect (by natures standards) and quite beautiful to look at.

Once we had finished up in the Core, we headed over to the rainforest biome to explore the various tropical habitats located within. The temperature range was from 20-30°C at approximately 90% humidity so within minutes of entering the biome we had to start stripping off! George’s pram came in very handy for storing coats and layers, as well as George! The winding path through the biome takes you on a journey through the various tropical climates around the globe profiling the forms of plants and trees that grow there. In the middle there was even a typical hut from Malaysia.

We spent about an hour and a half in the rainforest biome before heading out into the cold again, well comparatively cold anyway! Outside the lobby between the two covered biomes is the outdoor seating area for the café, but George was getting hungry by this point so we wandered through the gardens and took a seat on one of the walls for our lunch.

It really was a beautiful day to be out and about, but we only stayed out for lunch before diving back into the mediterranean biome. This was much cooler than the tropical biome, and a fair bit drier to try to simulate the climate of the various locales around the world. This biome was definitely not as exciting and interesting as the tropical one. I think Rosie and I have much more interest in the more exotic locations around the world so the olive and citrus trees didn’t really do it for us. I feel that that observation is probably fairly unique to us as the café within the biome was packed and there seemed to be a lot of people in it generally.

The Eden Project is built within an old quarry so the whole site has it’s own microclimate and, as such, the outdoor growing areas have been dubbed the ‘outdoor biome’. The whole area was alive with medicines, foods and common British plants & trees. There were people working all over the place planting out the new seasons growth and harvesting things that were ready. It was incredibly lively and really made me want to put more effort into our garden, but we all know that’s never going to happen! Once we had seen all that we wanted to see, we meandered our way back up to the start to be herded through the gift shop before leaving. I picked up a little coffee plant (don’t want to get too excited with this gardening malarkey :wink:).

George was absolutely brilliant all day, although, I think he managed to miss virtually everything yet again. We left the Eden Project and decided to find our hotel for the night. The directions took us around three sides of the Eden Project grounds, through a little lane to a beautiful old house that had been converted into our hotel, Boscundle Manor. It looked like just the right place to spend the remainder of our second anniversary in style. The place was amazing, and we were given a bungalow, including kitchen, as our room :smile:. Apparently, when you book through Red Letter Days, if an upgrade is available at the time of booking, you are automatically upgraded. Bargain! It was a great end to a fantastic day out :smile:.

More photos can be found here

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