Discover St Ives

Discover St Ives

Discover St Ives – In a nutshell
Winner of a showcase of national awards including best family holiday destination by Coast magazine and one of the 10 best European beach destinations compiled by TripAdvisor, St Ives is a seemingly subtropical oasis where the beaches are golden, the vegetation is lush and the light piercingly bright. 

It’s no wonder then that the town has been attracting artists for decades who come to capture the area’s undeniable natural beauty. It started with J.M.W. Turner and the marine artist Henry Moore who first came to St Ives in the mid-1800s and since then the town has become a magnet for some of the world’s greatest painters, sculptors and ceramists. 

Reasons to visit St Ives

  • Numerous galleries and exhibitions
  • Attracts famous artists all year round
  • Four fabulous beaches with the UKs mildest climate: Porthmeor, Porthgwidden, Harbour beach, Porthminster
  • Fantastic surf at Porthminster beach
  • Plenty of pavement cafes, ancient pubs and top notch eateries with mouth watering menus
  • working harbour
  • One of Cornwall’s top destinations

Things to do in St Ives
Arrive in breathtaking style by taking the twenty-minute train ride on the popular branch line from St Erth to St Ives and be the first to spot the colourful fishing boats coming into harbour as the branch line snakes around the golden bays to the town. 

Kick off your shoes and stroll along the white sand at Portminster Beach where, out in the bay, you’ll see the dreamy view of Godrevy Lighthouse, inspiration for Virginia Woolf’s famous novel To the Lighthouse. 

Visit the Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden in St Ives where sensual sculptures by one of the country’s leading 20th century artists are exhibited in tranquil gardens. Wander along pathways through trees and shrubs and discover some of her most celebrated works in bronze and limestone. 

Behind the 14th century Sloop Inn on the Wharf and the Harbour beach there is a maze of narrow cobbled streets and fisherman’s cottages.  This is the heart of old St Ives, known to the locals as ‘Downlong’. Spend an hour or so delving into the life and times of bygone St Ives at the local museum. The large space is packed with memorabilia and artefacts that reflect St Ives’s long and varied history including fishing, boatbuilding, art and agriculture.

There are only four Tate galleries in the world and one of them is Tate St Ives. Opened in 1993 in recognition of the international importance of art in Cornwall and St. Ives in particular, the impressive gallery holds hundreds of works produced by the St. Ives School from the late 1800's through to the 21st century.    

Since the 1930s visitors have been taking the boat trip from the harbour out sea to watch the local colony of seals frolicking in the sea and sunbathe on the rocks. Located 3½ miles (6km) to the West of St Ives, the aptly named Seal Island is home to more than 40 seals who inquisitively like to say ‘hello’. 

Enjoy a family day at the beach building sand castles, playing in the rock pools or if you’re feeling adventurous grab a surfing lesson from the local surf school. Visit PorthmeorPorthgwiddenPorthminster and the Harbour beach.

St Ives links

St Ives Tourist Information Centre
Whats on in St Ives
Things to do in St Ives
St Ives holiday accommodation
St Ives hotels
St Ives B&Bs
St Ives camping
St Ives caravan sites
St Ives holiday parks
St Ives self catering
St Ives cottages
St Ives beaches
St Ives weather

What’s nearby

Map of Cornwall © OpenStreetMap contributors, CC BY-SA

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