England Travel Diary

A Cornish adventure: Eden (Project) exist. It’s in Cornwall.

The garden of Eden is no longer forbidden.

It’s in Cornwall, and is celebrating its 15 years birthday this year since being opened to public.

The extensive garden and Biomes of the Eden Project was transformed from a china clay mine.
The extensive garden and Biomes of the Eden Project was transformed from a china clay mine.

Eden Project was our first port of call on our Cornish journey, having got a train to Exeter and picked up a hire car for the trip (not advised, but I’ll tell you why in a later post) we headed straight to our hotel in St Austell, which was around 15 mins drive to Eden.

From china clay pit to being the world’s biggest greenhouse, the story of the Eden Project is one of determination. It took one person’s dream and years of planning, fund raising and complex project management to achieve what it is today and I say, that’s one inspiring story to remember!

The Eden Project transformation can be viewed through these well placed frames all through the garden.
The Eden Project transformation can be viewed through these well placed frames all through the garden.

To view the full effect of its transformation, you should visit the Eden Project website to see the before and after pictures.

The Rainforest Biome is the world's largest indoor rainforest and greenhouse!
The Rainforest Biome is the world’s largest indoor rainforest and greenhouse!

We originally thought we’d spent a couple of hours (2 hours max) here before heading off to somewhere else, but that was before we realised how big the place was!

The Mediterranean Biome, showcasing temperate climate vegetation, as well as houses a cafe for chilling out.
The Mediterranean Biome, showcasing temperate climate vegetation, as well as houses a cafe for chilling out.

The place, like its inception, is pretty tremendous. Here’s what else is tremendous about the place:

  • The Rainforest Biome is the world’s largest indoor rainforest
  • Effectively, that also makes it the world’s largest greenhouse
  • The two Biomes combined covers 13 hectares of land
  • The Eden ‘Hangloose’ Skywire zip wire is England’s longest and fastest zip wire
  • During the construction of the Biomes, the project entered the  Guinness Book of Records for using the most scaffolding: a whopping 230 miles (approx. 370 km) of it!
The Biomes of the Eden Project are truly amazing architectural feats.
The Biomes of the Eden Project are truly amazing architectural feats.

So, as you can imagine, our plan of spending a couple of hours in Eden, ended up being around 4 hours of exploring the Biomes and the surrounding garden, and spending sometime learning all about the project in The Core building.

While in the rainforest dome, we were able to go right up to the top of the viewing platform, and get a sense of just how beautiful this place is. The platform is not open all the time but I recommend checking it out and try to queue for it as the view is simply stunning.

The climb to the viewing platform at the Rainforest Biome at the Eden Project - worth waiting in queue for!
The climb to the viewing platform at the Rainforest Biome at the Eden Project – worth waiting in queue for!

The best thing I love about the Eden Project is the educational value, and happy to see many families take their children to experience the many lessons the project tries to teach us.

The rainforest dome in particular, talks about agriculture and how our food gets to the supermarket shelves, and where the plants have cultural significance, the stories are shared in the exhibits such as Malay long houses and shelter huts in Vanuatu.

The Core building at the Eden Project is filled with educational facts and information
The Core building at the Eden Project is filled with educational facts and information

The outdoor gardens are equally impressive, with different areas dedicated to different things such as medicinal plants, crops for important food sources.

I was particularly impressed with the WEEE Man, constructed with electronic waste to raise awareness of how much electrical waste we get through in the UK (and I image, the rest of the world too).

The WEEE Man, constructed to remind us just how much e-waste we generate!
The WEEE Man, constructed to remind us just how much e-waste we generate!

Essentially, a visit to the Eden Project make you realise what nature currently must deal with (humans, mostly), what it could be, and what it should be. We had a fantastic day, and I can’t wait to return for Eden events one day!

Eden Project Official Website

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