Chysauster Ancient Village

Chysauster Ancient Village

This well-preserved Iron Age settlement close to the village of Gulval and some five miles from Penzance, offers plenty of clues to what rural life was like some 2,000 years ago.

A central “street” has courtyard houses either side, of a design only found on this Land’s End peninsula and on the Isles of Scilly. The houses are arranged around an open central courtyard with rooms leading off.

The rooms would have been thatched and there is evidence of channels for fresh water supplies. The people who lived here were farmers who kept animals – probably pigs and goats – and grew cereal crops. The settlement was occupied for around 100 years, including during the Romano-British period. It is close to the Iron Age hill fort of Castle an Dinas.
There’s a peaceful atmosphere here and Chysauster is still surrounded by countryside.


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Chysauster is 175m above sea level and you have uninterrupted views to the coast of a landscape almost unchanged since the early settlers lived here.

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The remains of a “fogou” – from the Cornish for cave – similar to one found at Carn Euny, eight miles away near Sancreed. Their use is surrounded in mystery. Were they for ritual purposes, storage or perhaps hiding? You decide.