Top 10 Dog-Friendly Beaches in Cornwall
With over 200 dog-friendly beaches to choose from, Cornwall really is a wonderful playground for your coastal companion. From sheltered coves to miles of windswept sand, we’ve rallied our team and their dogs and headed out to bring you our top 10 favourite beaches.
Cornwall has all the right ingredients for a dog’s day out and with 137 dog-friendly beaches year-round, and a further 71 with seasonal restrictions, we always make a beeline to the sand and surf with our dogs when the weekend comes around. Read on to discover our top 10 beaches we’d like to share with you …
1. Porthcurnick Beach, The Roseland Peninsula, south Cornwall
This secluded cove has risen to fame since the opening of the renowned The Hidden Hut cafe that attracts visitors and locals alike to its alfresco beach vibe and feast nights. A stunning spot, sheltered by the headlands, to swim in crystal clear waters, soak up the Cornish sunshine and to stop a while before continuing along the coastal path towards the quaint village of Portscatho or the breathtaking scenery at Nare Head.
2. Chapel Porth and Porthtowan, north Cornwall (seasonal dog restrictions from May – end September)
These wonderful neighbouring beaches are connected with a great coastal path walk of just over 3 miles which leads you up and over some of the counties most iconic scenery as you pass copper mine engine houses, including Wheal Coates, and climb the rusty red cliff paths. Porthtowan and Chapel Porth offer wide expanses of sand for your dog to bound along the shoreline and dive into the sea. The dog-friendly food and drink stop, The Blue Bar at Porthtowan offers a cool surf atmosphere serving up local cuisine, barista coffees and impressive sundowner cocktails and the Chapel Porth Cafe serves up famous Hedgehog Ice Creams.
3. Hawkers Cove, Padstow, north Cornwall
Nestled under Stepper Point, Hawkers Cove is easily accessed from Padstow harbour. Gently shelving sands stretch over 1.5 miles as the tide slacks. Capture the ebb and flow of the Camel Estuary as it reveals the Doom Bar and winds its way up towards Wadebridge, Rock and Little Petherick Creek. Padstow loves to welcome dogs and you’ll find many cafes and pubs stocked with home-made dog treats. Extend your stomp through the town and onto the Camel Trail, an old tram trail, that hugs the estuary and offers quiet spots for a doggy-dip.
Gunwalloe Church Cove, Lizard Peninsula, south/west Cornwall
Tucked at the top of the Lizard Peninsula, this glorious beach has rocks for
climbing, pools to explore and a stream to paddle in. Take a walk around the
corner to Dollar Cove, where you might be lucky enough to find some of the
treasure washed up from the wreck of a 17th century Spanish ship.
Porthkidney Sands, Hayle, west Cornwall
Leave the bustling beaches of St Ives and escape to the great stretch of beach at Porthkidney Sands where just a handful of beachgoers and dog-walkers gather. Accessed from the coast path or through the dunes from Lelant, this pristine beach has been dubbed ‘happy dog beach’ by locals.
Long Rock, nr Marazion, west Cornwall
A swathe of sand and pebbles adjoining Marazion Beach at low tide,
Longrock is popular with dog walkers and families. With its calm, shallow
waters it’s a safe swimming beach, and there’s a promenade for walkers and
cyclists that pause here on their way between Penzance and Marazion.
Port Gaverne, nr Port Isaac, north Cornwall
This picture perfect cove is sheltered from the rolling waves that crash against the high rocks in this dramatic corner of the coast. Park in Port Isaac and head down to the cove of Port Gaverne, a sandy and stoney beach, where azure blue waters make it popular kayaking spot. The Port Gaverne pub is well worth a visit before heading up and over the headland towards Trebarwith Strand.
Holywell Bay, north Cornwall
Six miles south of Newquay, Holywell Bay keeps the crowds at bay. With
giant sand dunes, a stream to paddle in and the Atlantic pounding the shore,
it’s the perfect beach for hitting the surf, collecting shells and exploring the
sea caves in search of the ‘holy well’. You can also follow the coast path to
Kelsey Head to spot seals and seabirds and may even catch a glimpse of Captain Poldark as the BBC film the next series against this stunning backdrop. The Hungry Horsebox is on hand in the warmer months to help refresh and refuel you with lunch-on-the-go.
Gwenver, nr Sennen, west Cornwall
To the east of Sennen Cove, the rugged, more secluded Gwenver is wild, remote and beautiful. Accessed via a steep cliff path or a short walk from Sennen, the crowds are kept at bay. But if you’re serious about stepping foot on the coarse white sands, scrambling over wave-hewn boulders and dipping in unforgiving waves, this is paradise.
Harlyn Bay, north Cornwall
Heading west from Padstow you are met by not only stupendous scenery but
also a string of sandy coves lacing the coastline back towards Newquay. The
second sandy expanse you come to is Harlyn Bay – a generous stretch of
sand that’s popular with surfers and swimmers. Food for Thought provides tea, coffee and take away food to keep the hunger at bay or enjoy the laid back coastal pub of Harlyn Inn. Continue your exploring along the coastpath to Rocky Beach at Trevone and onwards past the blowhole to Padstow.
It’s never been easier to plan a dog-friendly holiday in Cornwall. Gone are the days of limited choice and sub-standard accommodation, over 90 of Cornish Gems luxury properties welcome four-paws, we even leave hand-baked dog treats from Buddylove Dog Treats to get those tails wagging. View our collection here or give our Travel Advisors a call on 01872 241241 to plan your next holiday, with your dog in tow.