If you're dreaming of miles of white sand, crystal clear water and secret rocky coves, then look no further than Cornwall. This coastal paradise is famously known for its stunning beaches and surf-friendly waters, with plenty of spots to taste local produce from delicious pasties to cream tea. Whether you're looking for a day of riding the waves or a picturesque walk, we have compiled a list of the most beautiful beaches in Cornwall.
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Pedn Vounder Beach
Just a stone's throw away from Porthcurno beach, Pedn Vounder is one of Cornwall's hidden beauties. However, it has gained a great deal of attention recently for featuring in the TV adaptation of Poldark. Located just below the cliff of Treryn Dinas, this little corner of paradise can only be seen at low tide, where you can admire its rocky coves with breathtaking clear and turquoise waters.
Gyllyngvase beach is Falmouth's largest and one of the most popular in Cornwall for families. Take in breathtaking coastal views of the water before checking out a fabulous variety of sub-tropical flowers at Queen Mary Gardens which is located seconds away. If you're looking for some grub or a little bit of bubbly after your trip, be sure to visit The Falmouth Stable which is less than a five-minute drive away.
Owned by the National Trust, Kynance Cove is one of the best cove beaches in Cornwall and is known for its stunning contrast of clear waters with dark red and green serpentine rock. At low tide, you can explore the fascinating rock caves such as The Parlour and The Drawing Room. If you've worked up an appetite, head to the café close to the shore which sells tasty baked goods from pasties to cakes.
An idyllic sandy beach that looks like something from a postcard. Porthmeor beach is superb for summer picnics, swimming and exploring. It does, however, get busy in the warmer months, but this is due to its closeness to the centre of St Ives, where you'll find heaps of ancient pubs, art galleries and restaurants. When it gets a little cooler, get your board shorts ready as this is one of the best beaches in Cornwall for surfing.
Summerleaze beach is a popular destination and one of the best beaches in Cornwall for families. During the summer months, this sandy stretch is fantastic for a full day out, and is just a short walk from Bude Castle, where there are plenty of seafood eateries and pubs to enjoy nearby. If you're a fan of watersports, you can also rent a kayak on the shoreline, or head to one of the local surf schools.
Located in North Cornwall between Polzeath and Tintagel Much, Port Isaac is a vibrant fishing village with plenty of things to do. Wander through the quaint streets and make your way down to the historic harbour or venture out and explore many of the local coastal walks. If you're feeling peckish, head to Outlaw's New Road for the catch of the day with stunning views overlooking the sea.
Although quiet and small with little facilities, Gwynver beach has a cracking view to make up for it. Named after Guinevere, wife of the legendary King Arthur, this dog-friendly spot is a lovely place to relish the Cornish coast and countryside. If you're lucky, you might be able to watch some dolphins and basking sharks in the summer months.
This charming 3-mile long stretch is ideal for those looking for a quiet spot in the sun. Porthleven beach has heaps to do, from watersports to strolling around the shops. If you're a fan of pan-Asian cuisine then stop off at Kota, a restaurant situated in a 300 year old pub, which overlooks the stunning harbour.
Great for surfers and families alike, Perranporth beach is another one of Cornwall's treasures known for its distinctive arch. This long stretch of golden sands is one of the largest on the North Coast, as it connects in low tide with neighbouring beach Penhale Sands. Be sure to make your way into the archetypal town for its great high street and a fabulous selection of local eateries and pubs.
Just a short distance from Holywell Bay, Fistral beach is loved by both swimmers and surfers. Famously known for the Cribbar, a reef at the north end of the shore, which creates waves with heights up to 30 feet. This spot is a premier location if you're keen to ride some of the best waves in the UK. If you've worked up an appetite, be sure to check out The Fistral Beach Stable just a short walk from the beach for fresh seafood and wine.
If you're looking for an oasis of natural beauty in the far west of Cornwall, then make your way to the award-winning Porthcurno beach. This popular location is known for its delightful sea view and high cliffs which provide plenty of shelter from the coastal winds making it ideal for the cooler months.
East Looe Beach
A much-loved favourite with holidaymakers, East Looe beach is a perfect location for swimming and picnics. There's also plenty to do in the area, you can check out the wildlife sanctuary just off Hannafore Point or a take trip on a glass bottom boat. You can also enjoy some great eateries such as The Sardine Factory, with delicious produce sourced locally from their fishermen.
This hidden gem is located on the spectacular stretch of the coast between Fowey and Polperro. Although access to Lantic Bay is a little difficult, with a steep cliff path, this quiet and idyllic beach is a great place to sit back and listen to the soothing sound of the waves crashing against the rocks.
Looking for more places to eat? Check out the best restaurants in Cornwall.