A bay for everyday

    Made famous by Rick Stein over the last 30 years or so, there’s much more to Padstow than just great places to eat. It’s still a working harbour, it’s surrounded by glorious beaches, and offers a base to explore the Camel estuary.

    481Daymerbeach-Matt Jessop.jpg
    Daymer Bay
    One of the many beaches close to Padstow.
    St. Petroc's Bistro, just one of the great places to eat.
    Spoilt for choice

    A bay for everyday

    Enjoy a fun filled day out on one of the many beaches in the Padstow area. If you want golden sand, this is the place to come, from the tidal beaches at Hawker’s Cove to the long strands at Harlyn and Treyarnon. Hop on the ferry and explore Rock or Daymer Bay or take the surf boards to Constantine Bay.

    You’re on holiday, if you just want to relax and sunbathe all day, do, but there’s plenty of activities on hand to stop you getting bored. At low tide explore the rock pools or build sandcastles, For the more adventurous, learn to surf at a local surf school, or grab a mask and snorkel and see what lurks below the water.

    The best restaurants in Cornwall?

    Dine in style

    Padstow is known country-wide for the quality of its food and dining, and for good reason. The opening of Rick Stein’s first restaurant here in the 1970s was the start of a dining boom which led to Paul Ainsworth at Number 6 being awarded its first Michelin Star in 2013.

    But it’s not all fine restaurants; there's cafes, bistros, tapas bars, cosy tearooms and a handful of welcoming pubs all dotted around the harbour. And there’s always Cornish pasties and traditional fish and chips if you fancy a quick take-away, just watch out for the gulls!

    Harlyn Bay
    Considered one of the best family beaches in Cornwall.
    The Doom Bar
    The mouth of the Camel estuary

    The Doom Bar

    The mouth of the Camel Estuary is known and feared by many seafarers for the notorious Doom Bar. This is a sandbar that can move depending on the currents, especially after storms. Until the 20th Century, access to the safety of the estuary was under the cliffs of Stepper Point, but this could mean loss of wind for the sailing ships of the time, and many were lost in gales.

    In the early 20th century, the bar shifted considerably but with continuous dredging a safe channel has been created, but it can still catch some sailors out. Latest estimates claim over 600 craft have been wrecked on the Doom Bar, the last in 2020.

    Cornish folklore relates that the bar was created by a mermaid as a dying curse on the harbour after being shot by a local man. The poet Sir John Betjeman wrote his version of the story saying that the mermaid fell in love with a local man and could not bear to live without him. Eventually she tried to lure him beneath the waves and his only means of escape was to shoot her.

    A pretty harbour with lively streets and a thriving foodie scene, situated on one of the most beautiful stretches of coast in Britain. Padstow is a must-visit.

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    Accommodation in Padstow

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    Self-Catering & Resorts in Padstow

    Blable Farm Barns


    Tastefully converted and luxurious 5 Star barns close to Padstow Overlooking peaceful country valley. Situated on family working farm, barns personally supervised.

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    Self-Catering & Resorts in Padstow

    Trevear Farm

    Idyllic and restful oasis of 9 luxury cottages in St Issey with fabulous facilities. Located near the buzzing towns of Padstow and Rock, and the beautiful Camel Estuary, there are plenty of outdoor ac...

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    Special Offers

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    Accommodation in Padstow

    Self-Catering & Resorts in Bude

    Luxury Cottages

    Luxury Cottages is a holiday rental agency that offers the finest staycation cottages in the UK’s most sought-after locations, with collections to suit different holiday and corporate needs handpicked...

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    Hotel in Padstow

    THE PIG - at Harlyn Bay


    Just a short stroll from Harlyn beach and Constantine Bay beaches, THE PIG-at Harlyn Bay is only a 10-minute drive to the picturesque port of Padstow (where THE PIG’s good friends the Restaurateurs an...

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    Things to do in Padstow

    More things to do in Padstow
    Family Attractions, Nature & Wildlife, Experiences

    The National Lobster Hatchery

    If you are looking for something a bit different to do, why not come along to our award-winning Visitor Centre in Padstow.

    PadstowRead more
    Surfing and Water Sports

    Harlyn Surf School

    Harlyn Surf School is Cornwall’s premier surf school and watersports centre offering a choice of fantastic activities for all the family.

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    Family Attractions

    Camel Creek Family Theme Park

    Reopening March 2024 - Camel Creek Theme Park is a vibrant and welcoming visitor destination, delivering great adventures and days out for the whole family.

    Padstow, WadebridgeRead more
    Nature & Wildlife, Boat Tours, Fishing & Sea Safaris

    Padstow Sealife Safaris

    Padstow Sealife Safaris offer wildlife watching boat trips incorporating a mix of exhilaration and sensitive wildlife watching around the North Cornish coastline.

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    Food & Drink

    Rick Steins The Seafood Restaurant

    Opened by Rick Stein and Jill Stein in 1975, the Seafood Restaurant is where it all began. Boasting an international reputation for serving the freshest fish and shellfish

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    Food & Drink, Shopping

    Padstow Distilling

    A growing distillery in the heart of Cornwall’s culinary capital, Padstow Distillery has been crafting small-batch spirits since 2019.

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    Plan your trip

    Everything you need to know to plan your perfect trip to Padstow

    • From the M5 follow the A30 to Bodmin, Turn off here and head through the town taking the A389 towards Wadebridge. Here you will join the A39 passing over the river and past the Royal Cornwall Showground.

      Shortly after this take a right turn onto the A389 again and follow signs to Padstow. (Please note this route is not suitable for HGV's or large caravans/motorhomes)

      In the main season there is a large carpark on the edge of Padstow, which is approx a 10 minute walk into town. There are other carparks, including down on the quayside, but these fill up early in the season.

    • Padstow is served by local bus services from Newquay, Wadebridge and Bodmin.

      The nearest National Express stop is at Bodmin.

    • There hasn't been a train stop at Padstow since 1967. The route of the railway is now the popular Camel Trail.

      The nearest mainline railway station is Bodmin Parkway from where you can get a bus to Padstow.

    • Newquay Airport is only 12 miles away from Padstow and the Newquay bus stops there on route.

    FAQs Title

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    • For Visit Cornwall we class North Cornwall as the coast running down from the Devon border to Perranporth. This includes, Bude, Boscastle, Tintagel, Port Isaac, Polzeath, Padstow, Newquay plus loads of smaller places in between. Inland, we go down to Launceston, across the top of Bodmin Moor and continue past Wadebridge keeping north of the A30.

    • Some would say eating! And if you have the budget, you probably could, there are that many great places to eat! Or you could spend the day learning to cook with Rick Stein, though he probably won't be there.

      Away from the gastro indulgences, Padstow is a nice place to just amble around, look in a few shops, take a walk out along the coastal path, or hire a bike and go up the Camel Trail?

      You can learn all about lobsters, visit Prideaux House or St Petroc's Church, even catch a ferry across to Rock...

    • It's best known these days as the place where Rick Stein has all his restaurants, but prior to Mr Stein turning up, it was probably best known for its May Day celebrations and the Obby Oss, which dances through the busy streets from morning to night.

    • You could, but you would have to follow the Camel Trail inland to Wadebridge and then make your way back out along the other side of the estuary to Rock. It's much easier to catch the ferry across from Padstow!!

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