LivingTravelPlan a visit to the Eden Project in Cornwall

Plan a visit to the Eden Project in Cornwall

Paradise on Earth in South West England

The Eden Project is probably as amazing to visit as it is difficult to describe. Describing itself as a tourist attraction, educational charity and social enterprise, for the average visitor, with or without family, this attraction is simply a great day out in Cornwall.

If you and your family are interested in plants, you will be in seventh heaven. The huge “biomes” of the Eden Project are biospheres for different climatic regions, the tropical forest and the Mediterranean, full of all kinds of plants, insects and even some native birds of the regions; The rainforest is the largest “in captivity.” There are also open-air gardens with displays of flowers, tea, hops, and exotic vegetables; giant sculptures (indoor and outdoor) and a variety of activities, performances, and things that happen all the time.

In all, gardeners at the Eden Project care for more than a million plants.

Why did they put Eden in Cornwall?

Because they had a big hole in the ground waiting to be filled, basically.

Cornwall has been known for its mineral resources since prehistoric times. Tin and gold were mined there and exported to Europe in the Bronze Age, 3,500 years ago.

One mineral resource that is still mined in Cornwall is Chinese clay, also known as kaolin. It is used in the manufacture of fine porcelain, but also to coat paper, as a light-reflecting bleach in cosmetics, as a diffuser in light bulbs, ceramics, medicine and even in products intended for human consumption, for example, toothpaste.

China’s clay mines are on the surface and changing the landscape. The Eden Project fills 35 acres of abandoned Chinese clay pits near St. Austell in South Cornwall.

Yet another reason for locating the Eden Project here is Cornwall’s mild climate. Microclimate pockets make growing exotic plants and a wide variety of plants from different habitats easier in Cornwall than most other places in the UK.

Things to see – The Rainforest Biome

The humid tropical rainforest has jungles, waterfalls and a raised forest canopy plus a treetop viewing platform for the brave. The biome is 50 meters (about 165 feet) high and has mangroves, fruit-bearing banana trees, a Malaysian hut with a vegetable patch and a rice field, cola and cocoa plants, a soybean plantation and probably dozens more. that I have left out. Every once in a while, gardeners may bring a Titan arum, the world’s largest and stinkiest flower, into bloom.

It takes six years. Watch a video of the Titan Arum.

If you’re lucky, while you’re in the rainforest, you might see one of the gardeners fly up to the canopy in the biome’s helium balloon to check out the plants and prune a bit. While I was there, I was able to see the adventurer Ben Fogle get on the balloon to fly the London 2012 Olympic Flame to the top of the biome.

Things to see – The Mediterranean biome

The Mediterranean climate is similar to four other world regions: South Africa, southwestern Australia, central Chile, and California. Within the 35-meter-high (nearly 115-foot) biome you’ll find the plants, fruits, and herbs of these regions: lemons, olives, grapes, fragrant rosemary, and thyme and oregano. In the vineyard, the Bacchanalian sculptures enjoy the fruit of the vine.

The more than 1,000 species of plants found here thrive in temperatures ranging from 9 to 25 degrees Celsius (48 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit). Highlights include a Californian meadow with poppies and lupins; perfume vats where natural aromas are collected; South African proteas, cork oaks, giant citrons and aloe veras buds. Watch a stone pine “explode” in the Mediterranean biome.

Things to see – The outdoor gardens

Taking advantage of Cornwall’s mild climate, the outdoor gardens at the Eden Project include 80 different exhibits, often combining plants in unusual ways to inspire visiting gardeners. Among the highlights:

  • A wooden boat afloat among the tea leaves.
  • Outdoor sculptures that include a giant bee and a robot made from all the electronic waste that a person creates in life.
  • The Nest: a giant swing for children
  • The spiral garden to stimulate the senses.
  • Hops, barley and hemp plantations.

what’s there to do?

The Eden Project is not just about looking. It is also about learning, playing and enjoying. At “The Core,” the main visitor center overlooking the entire site, find hands-on exhibits on plants, the environment and us. The Core is also home to several cafes, the educational center, and the gift shop. There is free WiFi everywhere and children can enter the site through a secret entrance via a slide.

A wide variety of special events keep the Eden Project going, from “do-and-do” sessions for children to art workshops, classes and exhibitions, evening concerts and concerts, daily storytelling sessions from noon to 2 pm , even back massage sessions in the biomes

  • Check your event calendar to see what’s on during your visit.
  • Check the schedule of seasonal events for children

Eden Project Essentials:

  • Where: Eden Project, Bodelva, St Austell, Cornwall, PL24 2SG, UK.
  • Contact: +44 (0) 1726 811911
  • Hours: every day of the year from 9 am except Christmas and boxing day. The domes sometimes have private functions or weddings and may close early. Sometimes it is necessary to close early to maintain plant health, so it’s a good idea to check their website before you go.
  • Admission: Children 4 and under are free. Prices available for adults, people over 60 and concessions, and family tickets. The ticket price includes annual membership and free admission for one year. Discounts are offered for online purchases. Visitors arriving by bike or train can also receive discounted tickets.
  • Accessibility: The Eden Project was named Britain’s most accessible attraction in 2010. The site welcomes guide dogs and all types of wheelchairs and mobility vehicles. Braille signs are scattered throughout the facility. For more information, check out their award-winning online access guide.
  • Meals: There are various facilities depending on your mood or where you are in the huge site when hunger strikes. All food is local, seasonal or fair trade and the cafes offer vegetarian and gluten-free options. We tried the bakery, an indoor and outdoor cafe between the domes. There are delicious salads, traditional Cornish cakes and the widest selection of cakes and pastries, all at a very reasonable price. Mediterranean food is served outdoors in the Mediterranean biome. Watch a video about Eden Project Bakery
  • How to get there: St. Austell, the nearest train station, is about half an hour by bus. Regular bus services from the train station travel to the Eden Project. (In 2016, it was about First Bus services, Route 101 – check the bus schedule.) Visitors changing in St. Austell for a local train to Luxulyan, Bugle or Par stations can cycle or walk the two or three miles to the station. Visitors arriving by bus or train are offered discounted admission (not available for tickets purchased online). Check National Rail Inquiries for train times.
  • Visit their website
  • Follow the Eden Project on Facebook
  • Follow the Eden Project on Twitter
  • Watch their video channel

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