October 31, 2016

Daphne du Maurier's Fowey

“Fowey has a magic all of its own.”

~ Daphne du Maurier

One of my favourite stops on our tour of Cornwall was the town of Fowey with its scenic seaside location at the mouth of the River Fowey. When I stepped off the motor couch outside the Fowey Hotel I was welcomed by lush hydrangeas, fragrant English lavender and a grand view of the harbour below. The hotel also has a connection to author Daphne du Maurier.

Fowey, Cornwall

As a young writer, du Maurier and her mentor, Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch, would meet at the Fowey Hotel for afternoon tea. His photograph now hangs in a public sitting room.

Photo of Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch

The hotel is charming, with an old-fashioned lift and excellent views from the guest rooms. I almost expected to see the author herself walking out of the Rebecca Suite.

Du Maurier went on to write her first novel The Loving Spirit at Ferryside, her holiday home near the ferry landing in nearby Boddinick. The house is still owned by the family today.


We strolled through town in search of the Daphne du Maurier Literary Centre but I learned it was in the process of being moved to its new home in a museum.

A little disappointed, I settled for some fish and chips at the Galleon Inn, a pleasant riverside pub. A sign near the entrance warned of aggressive sea gulls so we took a table indoors.

Galleon Inn, Fowey

After lunch we returned to the Fowey Hotel and the aptly named Lookout Gin Bar. The terrace looks out on the busy harbour and the English Channel beyond.

View towards the English Channel
St. Catherine's Castle
Fowey Harbour

While I sipped on my gin and tonic, a bold sea gull swooped in to clean up the remnants of someone’s afternoon tea. Do you remember the 1963 Alfred Hitchcock horror film, The Birds? The film was based on a novelette by the same name, also written by Daphne du Maurier who likely had some experience with birds behaving badly.

The air got a little chilly as evening approached so we moved indoors for a casual dinner, again with a memorable view.

I wish I could’ve spent more time exploring the lovely town of Fowey but in the morning we’d be leaving Cornwall to visit another notable literary town, Lyme Regis.

1 comment:

  1. Lovely photos. I have read all of Du Maurier's books and love them. I had a beautifully illustrated book of her short stories and gave it away years ago, much to my regret. Thanks for sharing.


All comments are moderated.