When I was a teenager, I was absolutely nuts about the Arthurian legends. I read everything I could get my hands on about these myths. So it was a big thrill to go to Tintagel!
Now, the truth about Tintagel is quite prosaic. The castle ruins which currently occupy the cliff top don't really date back to Arthur's time. The castle was actually built in the middle ages as a summer home for a wealthy nobleman who simply wanted to associate himself with the Arthurian myths for reasons of prestige. But the castle ruins are still very impressive. Since Victorian times (when there was a big resurgence of interest in the King Arthur legends), Tintagel has been a classic tourist town, cashing in as much as it can on King Arthur, Merlin and the Round Table.
I still found Tintagel to be utterly charming. I'm no snob or purist about the King Arthur myths. Nor am I one of those people who think that, unless the stories are proved to have been based on historical fact, they cannot have any true significance. No, anything about King Arthur is grist to my mill. Beautiful, bogus or tacky -- I love it all!
Tomorrow -- the climb, my Gawd, the climb!