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The place to remain in Cornwall: a fast information to selecting the right base

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The lingering style of ocean salt in your lips, the scent of fish and chips doused in vinegar, the soundtrack of lapping waves and sprightly birds – Cornwall has turn out to be essentially the most quintessential of English seaside getaways, and all for good causes.

After I first set off to find the craggy-coves, idyllic villages, and breathtaking shoreline of Cornwall, I did all of it fallacious. Day by day we might drag our circumstances again to the automobile for one more continuous whirlwind of sightseeing, exhaustedly tumbling into mattress filled with locally-brewed beer and freshly caught seafood. Certain, we noticed so much – however as I’ve learnt on subsequent return journeys, the true magic of Cornwall isn’t in what number of seashores or points of interest you tick off; it’s about embracing the tempo of life. 

Picturesque St Ives in Cornwall
Picturesque St Ives in Cornwall

The tiny back-street pubs the place locals chatter, these minutes that flip to hours in your new favorite seaside admiring the surroundings, the leisurely indulgence of a protracted lunch gazing out to sea.

Cornwall – very very like my residence area of Dorset and the Jurassic Coast – is a spot to cherish, to decelerate, and embrace the actual fact you’ll nearly actually plan a return journey to take extra of it in. Whereas Summer season is undoubtedly the preferred time to go to, I’ve explored it in all seasons, and the bonus of avoiding these peak months is twofold. Firstly, the crowds disappear within the winter months, as I learnt at my cousins’ St. Ives wedding ceremony final January wandering the enchantingly quiet streets. Secondly, the costs of lodging and minimal night time necessities additionally dwindle. 

Whereas it’s not stunning July and August usually require a one-week keep, corporations like Basic Cottages usually have extra versatile phrases outdoors of the height months, so you possibly can simply keep in a couple of locations, with out speeding round.

In your first one week in Cornwall, I’d recommend selecting two to a few bases max and spending two to 4 nights in every spot. Whereas the distances don’t seem so lengthy on the map, the slender nation lanes can usually add to the drive time, so having a base to discover the native points of interest from, earlier than transferring on, will probably be useful and minimise the fixed packing and unpacking.

I’ve at all times handled Cornwall geographically as three coasts. Essentially the most visited West, stretching from Portreath to close Falmouth, The South, protecting Falmouth to the Devon border, and The North, stretching from Newquay to Bude. Selecting a base in every of those areas will normally assist you to see something you need with no huge drive. 

When you’ll discover tons of of dreamy locations to remain and great issues to expertise and discover, listed here are a couple of of my highlights to begin planning the place to remain in Cornwall. 

The place to remain in West Cornwall?

St. Ives

Maybe the poster youngster for Cornwall, St. Ives charms with its broad seashores and charming cobbled streets, and is without doubt one of the hottest locations in England. Lodging is snapped up shortly right here, even outdoors of the excessive season, so ahead planning is crucial. Nice meals, a number of selections, the unbelievable Tate museum – you possibly can’t go fallacious!


One of many fundamental cities of Cornwall – famed for pirates – the sheltered bay of Penzance is a dreamy base with all of the facilities (and pubs) you could possibly want for, together with fairly gardens, historical past and galleries. For a unusual and historic keep, contemplate making The Chocolate Home your Cornwall base.

The Lizard Peninsula

Residence of essentially the most southerly level in England, this excellent peninsula nonetheless very a lot has a ‘get away from all of it’ vibe. Nature trails, rugged coves, and rock-strewn landscapes make for an excellent base if you wish to escape from the extra crowded hotspots, and also you’ll discover some charming locations to remain, like this transformed chapel.

The place else to go to in West Cornwall?

Minack Theatre

Some of the unbelievable spots in Cornwall is that this open-air theatre, perched on the sting of a rocky cliff overlooking the ocean. Come and go to for a tour by day, or for those who’re in luck, seize tickets to take pleasure in a present. 

Levant Mine

The mining historical past of Cornwall (and Devon) is UNESCO listed, and though the business is properly previous its heyday, if you wish to dig a little bit deeper into the historical past of the area, then Levant Thoughts is the place to do it.

The Lizard Peninsula 

Some of the stunning spots to take pleasure in a leisurely stroll in Cornwall, this peninsula is dreamy and filled with loads of picturesque bays full with pubs, reminiscent of Coverack, to cease and take all of it in.

Cornish Seal Sanctuary

Cornwall is residence to loads of seals, and on some seashores, you’ll see them basking on the sand. Right here, injured seals and pups are handled till they’re ideally properly sufficient to return to the wild – a preferred conservation spot and enjoyable for the youngsters. 

Saint Michael’s Mount

Nearly a sister of the French counterpart, this tiny island of stone houses is a enjoyable side-trip from the mainland, particularly at low tide when it’s one of the best time to stroll the causeway, which hyperlinks it to the city of Marazion.

Saint Michael's Mount
Saint Michael’s Mount

Lands Finish & The Cornish Coastal Path

This dramatic and scenic headland gives among the finest strolling trails you possibly can take pleasure in in Cornwall. The mammoth South West Coastal Path is a big multi-day trek, however selecting among the trails round right here will provide you with an excellent style of it.

Isles of Scilly

Take a brief flight or boat and head to the Isles of Scilly, an incredible assortment of white-sand seashores that may have you ever feeling such as you’re not within the UK!

The place to remain in South Cornwall?

St Austell Bay

One among my favorite locations within the nation and residential to one in every of my favorite breweries, St Austell city itself is an previous market city with good highway connections to discover from. The St Austell bay space, and locations reminiscent of Mevagissey, are filled with vibrant boats of their harbours, a plethora of seafood eating places and make for relaxed evenings consuming a pint to lapping waves.

Mevagissey near Saint Austell
Mevagissey close to Saint Austell


Cornwall isn’t all concerning the coast, and Truro, located nearly halfway inland, is an exquisite cathedral city to base your self at in case your journey focuses extra on gardens, reminiscent of Trelissick, and don’t wish to spend the entire journey on the coast. 


Full of a lot to maintain everybody entertained, from castles and sheltered bays, to museums and tropical gardens, Falmouth, as a big city, guarantees each an excellent base and someplace worthy of its personal time to discover. 

The Eden Project
The Eden Venture

The place else to go to in South Cornwall?

Eden Venture 

The fascinating Eden Venture, an area beloved by each adults and children, is residence to placing exhibitions, interactive experiences, and plant species from around the globe within the domed formed enclosed gardens.

Pendennis Fortress

Located on a headland with some gorgeous seaside views, Pendennis Fortress is an attention-grabbing cease for historical past lovers. Constructed by Henry VIII, this army fort, nonetheless with cannons and many to see, is value visiting.

Pendennis in Cornwall
Pendennis in Cornwall

Swanpool Seashore 

Submit visiting Pendennis, swing by the lovable bay seaside of Swanpool to take pleasure in a scrumptious seafood unfold at Hooked on the Rocks restaurant, top-of-the-line meals I’ve ever had in Cornwall. 

The Lost Gardens of Helligan
The Misplaced Gardens of Helligan

Misplaced Gardens of Heligan

I’m not a lot of a backyard particular person, however the Misplaced Gardens of Heligan carry so much to the desk. This huge space of manicured crops and woodlands covers some 200 acres, together with suspended bridges and moss coated statues. It’s made much more particular by the truth that thirty-odd years in the past, the gardens had been reclaimed by nature, including an air of intrigue to any go to. 


This charming fishing harbour with vibrant boats and fireside pubs is a detour value making; if you wish to seize Cornwall completely in a single picture, this can be a spot to do it in!

Mevagissey Saint Austell Cornwall
Cute Cormwall coastal villages are simply the beginning of your highway journey

The place to remain in North Cornwall?


The premier surf vacation spot of Cornwall, Newquay has grown in reputation through the years, making it very vacationer pleasant by way of points of interest, eating places, and choices – the great connections to A-roads additionally means easy accessibility to loads of close by spots.

Port Isaac

This minute fishing village is about as picturesque as you may get, and whereas the solar brings the day-trippers, by night time, it feels actually particular to have this charming spot to your self. Decide a cottage with sea views to benefit from the magic, or drive a little bit additional inland to remain in an previous transformed submit workplace.

The place else to go to in North Cornwall?

Tintagel Fortress

Whereas the citadel itself has seen higher days, this wonderful location, full with bridges suspended between verdant rocks, stair boardwalks, and exquisite seashores, make this a must-visit. A medieval fortification with legends of King Arthur, it’s an enchanting and majestic place. 

Bude Sea Pool

Bude is a captivating Cornwall city and an excellent place to cease for some Fish & Chips or a relaxation. On the coast, the unreal ocean entrance lido of Bude Sea Pool is good for cooling off each time the solar does make its UK debut!

Seafood in Cornwall
Seafood in Cornwall


One other charming and quaint harbour city, Padstow, is very fairly early morning if the water continues to be to get a postcard-perfect reflection picture of the stone homes and boats within the harbour. It’s a preferred lunch and dinner spot as a result of Rick Stein’s Fish & Chips restaurant and lots of different nice locations to eat in Padstow.

Perranporth, Bedruthan Steps & Fistral Seashores

There are some beautiful seashores alongside this stretch of coast, however these three, specifically, stand out – for those who solely have the time to go to one, I’d say go for Bedruthan Steps, it’s stunning, and your digital camera will thanks!

*Article produced in partnership with Basic Cottages, written from my very own experiences travelling via Cornwall

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