In many ways, Fowey feels like Padstow's south-coast sister; a workaday port turned well-heeled holiday town, with a trim tumble of pastel-coloured houses, portside pubs and tiered terraces overlooking the china-blue harbour. The town's wealth was largely founded on the export of china clay from the St Austell pits, but it's been an important port since Elizabethan times; Fowey was a key link in the chain of defences protecting the British mainland against Catholic invasion.
These days Fowey is a prim place, with pricey yachts, fancy shops and brasseries sprinkled along its barnacled quays. It's quite a different place to the sleepy fishing port commemorated by the thriller writer Daphne du Maurier, who lived for many years at nearby Menabilly. The town is still at its busiest in mid-May, when it hosts the four-day Fowey Festival, a literary and music festival.