West Cornwall holidays are simply stunning! There, we said it. Stretching from St Agnes right down and round to Porthleven, this slice of the Cornish coast includes some of the county’s best-known towns, and a few lesser-known gems too.
Stay in St Ives and be spoilt rotten with 5 stunning beaches or hop aboard a small boat ferry and be transported to magical St Michael’s Mount. There are tropical gardens to explore, sandy stretches to stroll, fabulous food spots to hang out in, and much much more.
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West Cornwall combines beautiful coastal scenery, culture and charm, with each of its towns having their own unique atmosphere. These are a handful of the reasons we think the region is so special:
Stop-in-you-tracks coastal scenery stretching from the iconic Land’s End to the picturesque Lizard Peninsula make this a fabulous destination for seaside holidays. Of course no holiday on the coast would be complete without a stunning beach to enjoy and West Cornwall offers a clutch of the best.
A mile long sandy stretch with lovely rockpools at low tide, this family beach has clear waters, and impressive surf conditions with a beautiful waterside bar and restaurant as well as an ice-cream parlour.
This incredible, long sandy beach is backed by high dunes and has wonderful views over St Ives Bay. It’s a popular surfing spot and you’ll find the beach-based Global Boarders nearby for lessons and equipment hire. It’s equally good for family days on the beach, with rockpools to explore and clear water to paddle in.
This paradisiacal cove is world renowned for its crystal-clear turquoise waters, fine white sand, and dramatic cliffs. The iconic Minack Theatre perches overhead with wide views out to sea.
A beautiful and expansive sandy beach popular among surfers, with warm, clear water and stunning views towards the Land’s End cliffs in the distance. The beach has a takeaway cafe and a surf school.
Situated near St Ives and flanked with lush tropical vegetation, This Blue Flag Beach offers a crescent of golden sand which is bordered by turquoise waters, offering a magical place to spend your days either in the water or sunbathing.
Porthminster Bay Beach, nestled in St Ives, Cornwall, is a charming sandy haven surrounded by subtropical gardens, featuring calm azure waters and boasting the backdrop of the iconic St Ives Bay.
With life centred around the ocean, you can expect most restaurant menus in the area to include the best local seafood. The region however is also littered with excellent eateries catering to every cuisine and palette imaginable so you’ll also discover cool cafes, street food trucks and farmers’ markets a-plenty.
As we know, the Atlantic Ocean provides excellent conditions for surfing, making Cornwall as a county, something of a surfer’s paradise. Beaches like Gwithian, Carbis Bay, Porthmeor, Porthcurno and Sennen Cove have their own unique conditions and are popular among surfers and water lovers.
The Coast Path
The South West Coast Path offers some of the most spectacular coastal walks in the country, allowing visitors to explore the rugged cliffs, hidden coves, and expansive beaches.
Peppered with lush gardens and exotic plant life, West Cornwall owes its lush tropical-like gardens to its mild climate. Trebah Garden, Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens, and the Lost Gardens of Heligan showcase the region’s botanical beauty.
Known for the exceptional quality of its light, this has long been a haven for artists and creatives from all walks of life. St Ives, in particular, has a thriving artistic community, with numerous galleries and studios.
The History and Culture
Beyond the evidence of ancient settlements and Celtic influences, the region’s mining heritage is its legacy. The World Heritage site at Geevor Tin Mine is a stunning place to discover the story of Cornish metal mining. Levant Mine and Beam Engine sit high-up on the exposed cliffs of the ‘Tin Coast’ and also form part of the Cornish Mining World Heritage Site. At its heart, the restored 1840s beam engine running on steam.
Jubilee Pool in Penzance
A stunning example of Art Deco architecture, this saltwater lido was built in the 1930’s and opens to the public between May and October. There’s also a modern geothermal pool (heated to about 30 degrees), and a cafe.
One of the most picturesque coastal villages, Mousehole is a taste of old world Cornwall with pretty Lamorna stone cottages and stunning sea views.
Newlyn Art Gallery and The Exchange
The fishing port of Newlyn is a great place to explore the thriving art culture of the area. These galleries celebrate the creative expressions of both local and visiting artists in the picturesque setting of Newlyn.
St. Michael’s Mount
Located in Marazion this small tidal island has a castle, chapel, and beautiful gardens. It’s accessible by foot during low tide and by boat during high tide.
An open-air theatre carved into the cliffs above Porthcurno Beach with jaw-dropping views of the Atlantic Ocean.
The westernmost point of mainland Cornwall, offering dramatic cliffs and coastal views – a walker’s dream!
Tate St Ives
St Ives’ iconic art gallery showcasing modern and contemporary art by both local and internationally-acclaimed artists.
Located near Falmouth, this subtropical paradise has exotic plants, water features, and a private beach.
Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens
Combining art with nature, this wonderful garden near Penzance features contemporary sculptures and beautiful landscape design.
Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden
Located in St Ives, this museum showcases the works of the renowned sculptor Barbara Hepworth, set in her studio and garden.
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