One of the highlights of my recent road trip with my mum was visiting The Eden Project in Cornwall. This was originally just part of my previous post on England’s West Country but its such an amazing place that cutting it down to two or three photos couldn’t possibly do it justice.
Mum and I didn’t have set plans to go to The Eden Project but driving along the motorway one afternoon, we saw a sign and somewhat impulsively took the next exit to spend the rest of our day at the biodomes.
Originally a huge clay pit, the site just outside of St Austell has had a complete overhaul and been regenerated as a huge environmental centre promoting and educating on biodiversity and sustainability.
The two massive biodomes – one Rainforest Biome and one Mediterranean Biome – are home to thousands of plant species from around the world.
Walking in to the Rainforest Biome, the wave of humidity that washes over you is slightly overwhelming. But its this artificial rainforest climate – assisted by the man-made waterfall – in the world’s largest conservatory that makes the plants flourish and turns the dome into an eclectic and colourful nature’s wonderland.
Sadly, the canopy walkway was closed due to unsafe temperatures! However, there was still plenty to see from ground level as we slowly wandered up the ramps through the dome.
I was pleased that we did the rainforest Biome first as after leaving the dome rather sweatier than we went in, the Mediterranean dome felt almost cool in comparison!
The array of plant species in both Biomes was just incredible; there were vibrant colours, unique shapes and flowers from the size of your pinky nail to the size of your head. There were plants that took me back to my childhood backyard (with visions of our pet beagle chomping through Mum’s hibiscus flowers) to ones that I didn’t even know and couldn’t quite believe existed!
Spring was the perfect time to visit, not only for flowers in full bloom but for newborn chicks! If there are any ornithologists reading, please solve this one for me and let me know what type of bird this is with her littlun!
The Eden Project has expanded year on year and is much more than a massive greenhouse; there’s a giant swing and England’s longest zipwire for those looking for a thrill (sadly both closed when we were there); the annual music festival The Eden Sessions held in front of the Biomes draws crowds by the thousands each summer; and there are different exhibitions, festivals and educational courses running all throughout the year.
I can’t recommend this place highly enough!
I walked away from this innovative tourist attraction feeling calm, relaxed and inspired. I guess that’s the power of nature…