Cornwall beach guide

Cornwall beach guide Rated the best beaches in the world

Cornwall's beaches are rated among the best in the UK and even the world. Thanks to our unique position on the UK's South West peninsula, 80% of Cornwall is surrounded by the sea with the longest stretch of coastline in the UK at 476km. 

Find a beach
On this website you can browse through more than one hundred beaches by using the left-hand filters to refine your search and help you find exactly what you're looking for.

Water quality
The Marine Conservation Society Good Beach Guide tested 82 beaches in Cornwall in 2014 for water quality with a 100% pass rate, and 91% scoring the highest marks available. 

Beach safety

Please note that RNLI Lifeguard cover is only provided at just over 20 selected beaches in Cornwall and at only at peak seasons. For more information please read Cornwall Council's Beach Safety Advice

The RNLI provide the following advice:

  • Always swim at a lifeguarded beach
  • Swim between the red and yellow flags
  • Never swim alone
  • Know your beach safety flags
  • Never use inflatables in strong winds or rough seas
  • If you get into trouble, stick your hand in the air and shout for help
  • If you see someone else in trouble, tell a lifeguard. If you can’t see a lifeguard call 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard
  • Find out about the beach you’re going to before you visit
  • Check tide times before you go
  • Read and obey local hazard signs

For more information visit www.rnli.org

Tides and currents When on the beach be aware of the tide times, especially high tide, as you might get caught off-guard unable return the way you came and face the dangers of rocks, cliffs and strong underwater 'rip' currents.

If you're looking for a dog-friendly beach...
Some beaches are dog friendly all year round, other beaches operate a seasonal dog ban usually from Easter to October. Activate the dog-friendly filter on the left-hand side to find dog-friendly beaches, checking each beach for seasonal ban details. For further information see Dog friendly holidays in Cornwall 

Search Results

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Search Results: 107Showing: 1 to 5
Applied filters: Beaches
  1. Gorran Haven Beach | St Austell Bay | Beaches in Cornwall

    Gorran Haven Beach

    Nr St Austell

    An east-facing sandy beach popular with families beside the very pretty South Coast village and harbour of Gorran Haven near St Austell.  This beach is dog friendly, however they must be kept on leads.

  2. Mother Iveys Bay | Padstow | Beaches in Cornwall c John Such

    Mother Ivey's Bay

    Padstow

    Good Beach Guide Recommended 2014. A sandy beach with stunning unspoilt surroundings. Cushioned from the wind by the Merope Rocks, Mother Ivey’s Bay lies in a sheltered location. The bay rarely gets too crowded even on the busiest summer days.

  3. St Ives Harbour Beach | St Ives | Cornwall

    St Ives Harbour Beach

    St Ives

    Soak up the harbour side atmosphere on this pretty beach in the favourite seaside town of St Ives. A seasonal dog ban operates on this beach.

  4. Duckpool Beach | Bude | Beaches in Cornwall

    Duckpool Beach

    Bude

    A wild and romantic cove with a small west-facing beach, Duckpool is often less crowded when other beaches are buzzing at the height of the season. The beach is beautiful, but not suitable for swimming.

  5. Gwenver Beach, Sennen c James Penman

    Gwenver Beach

    Sennen

    Beach washed by giant waves with spectacular views out to sea, the beach itself is sandy and around 150 metres long.

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