Europe 2008 Visual Diary page 59
Tintagel Castle, Cornwall

Getting to the remains of the 13th century castle was both hard work and terrifying...but sooooooo worth it!! Totally inspiring and awesome!!

First we had to climb from the white building in the centre of the left of the picture to the the top of the hill in the centre. Next we descended the steps and crossed the bridge near the bottom of the picture. From there it was another climb up very narrow, steep and uneven steps carved into the cliff to where this picture was taken. I took pictures on the decend and the bridge but coming up this side was just too scary to do anything but keep moving upwards!!

It was claimed by Geoffrey of Monmouth in the 12th century that the castle at Tintagel Head was where King Uther Pendragon seduced Queen Igraine of Cornwall, while her husband, Gorlois, was under siege at Dimilioc. King Arthur was thus conceived and Tennyson made the castle his birthplace. The castle was built on the site by Richard, Earl of Cornwall in 1233, to build on the Arthurian legends that were associated by Monmouth with the area and because it was seen as the traditional place for Cornish kings. The castle was built in a more old fashioned style for the time to make it appear more ancient. Cornwall was relatively untouched during the Roman occupation of Britain, however coins and pottery fragments found at the site indicate that the site, typical of a cliff-fort, was occupied in the third or fourth century. Two Roman milestones nearby indicate that a road led to the settlement. After the Romans left Britain, Celtic peoples did build a fortress on the site.

Taken from the bridge halfway to the castle

Finally at the top of the steps I felt settled enough to get the camera out again!