I absolutely adore Cornwall. It’s the UK’s best spot for sun, sea and sand with the friendliest folk (that really do put London to shame) and the best pasties you’ll ever eat!
Having lived in the St Ives in the South, Newquay in the North and Plymouth, an hour’s drive away: Cornwall has been my home for a quarter of my life and thus made me hesitant to post about my love for the County- failing to realise it’s somewhere I know far better than anywhere else I’ve posted about.
I love reading local insider tips when taking trips, so here’s some of the most beautiful places to visit in this stunning UK haven:
St Ives Bay
St Ives is renowned for it’s beautiful bay: luxury ice cream stands, quirky thrift stores and endless bars overlooking the sea. In peak summer season, you’ll be lucky to find a spot in the car park, but due to the variety of beaches and bars means that you’ll never feel cramped!
The easiest way to get to St Ives, or indeed everywhere in Cornwall is always by car but it’s also easily accessible on the train or bus. Take the T1 or T2 from Truro or the train on the Plymouth – Penzance line and change at Hayle.
To Eat: Try Hubbox for a modern twist on retro decor: mouthwatering burgers and more vegan options than a veggie patch! But, nothing says seaside like fish and chips by the sea- just watch out for the seagulls! On my last visit in February I had two ice creams and a full battered fish stolen from my bare hands!
To Do: Take a stroll along the bayside, check out the high street for one-of-a-kind (but not tacky) souvenirs and definitely head to the arcade for a trip back in time, play some ski-ball and win more candy than you’ll ever imagine!
Gyllyvase Beach, Falmouth
A local favourite and for good reason! This is the sweetest dog friendly beach in Cornwall, you can spend the day chilling out at the beach, watching the sunset from the cafe or doing the 5 mile walk down the Helford Passage to Mawnan Smith- where you can find a sub-tropical garden with another private beach.
To Eat: Gylly Cafe is open all hours so that you can enjoy a hearty meal before, during and after your time at the beach- plus they have outdoor seating that’s perfect for dog owners!
To Do: If you walk just past the cafe then you’ll find some rock pools just to the right and during January – April you can often see seal pups from here! They usually won’t come on to the shore when there’s dogs around (for obvious reasons) but if you head down at sunset you’re bound to see the sweetest little seals- or occasionally dolphins on the horizon too!
Truro is the only city in Cornwall, not by population (or any of the other criteria) but it got its city status from the beautiful cathedral taking pride in the centre of the shopping square. Built in the 1800s, it is only one of three cathedrals in the UK to still have spires. Inside, it’s architecture will leave you in awe, with it’s traditional symmetry and religious elements, it’s definitely worth a look.
To Eat: Try Lounge, Hubbox (just like in St Ives) or the Vegan Cafe for some tasty treats- like everywhere in Truro, there’s something to suit every diary need and a lot of vegan / veggie friendly places!
To Do: Around Truro there’s plenty to do! Vintage Clothes shopping is a must for a start (see 5) but have a look at the Cornwall Museum too, it’s full of beautiful memorabilia showing the best of the county’s heritage.
Okay so this isn’t necessarily in Cornwall, but you can get from the border of Cornwall & Devon to the hoe in a 10 minute drive so it’s still easily accessible. Like the rest of Plymouth, it proudly shows off it’s naval heritage and beautiful scenery out on the hoe you can see dozens of ships whilst watching the sun set over the ocean.
To Eat: One of my favourite things about Plymouth is the mass of country pubs that do carveries. A Sunday Roast is extremely hard to come by at university, same with eating out so this is always a massive luxury to me! Try the Lounge for chilled veggie delights or the Waterfront Pub Inn for a scenic view on the hoe and enough roast potatoes to keep you in there for hours.
To Do: Plymouth is known in Cornwall as ‘the big smoke’ and people generally utilise their time in Plymouth to live a day like you would in any big city: shopping, nights out and more shopping. Though it’s a luxury to be able to get everything at your fingertips, Plymouth offers more than just nightlife. Head to the Clay Art to paint your own pottery, or stroll along the Barbican for a meal with a view!
Vintage Clothes Shopping in Falmouth & Truro
Vintage Clothes shopping, although not to everyone’s taste, can be a way to explore some of the most beautiful fashion styles from the last century. In Falmouth, there’s WildPony Vintage Store or Botanicals and Truro is home to Enjoy Clothing, Rare Bits and the Vintage HomeStore.
To Eat: Try Habaneros for burritos that will change your life! Think subway meets Mexican food! The Cornish franchise has recently expanded to a restaurant overlooking the harbour.
To Do: Falmouth may only be a small town, but with a 5,000 student university right in the centre, there’s always some artsy event on and at least 5 club events on each night. By day, enjoy the tranquility of the beach and 70s shopping and by night let your hair down at 5 Degrees Below or Mangos!
— half the world away x 🗺✈️🌏 (@half_theworld) March 3, 2019
If you are looking for places to stay in Cornwall, try AirBnB for a country cottage (they’re often dog-friendly too)- but be sure to book quickly! The Summer season in Cornwall can be pretty hectic and with limited budget-friendly accommodation options, it’s definitely worth putting a deposit down somewhere.
Have you been to Cornwall before? I’d love to know where you think the beautiful place in the county is! Comment below or find me on Twitter x