Known worldwide for its surf beaches, Newquay has so much more…
You don’t have to surf to enjoy Newquay
Newquay firmly placed its name on the world map when the surf craze hit Britain in the 1960s. Natural reefs found off Fistral and Watergate Bay beaches have attracted surfers ever since and competitions and surf-related music festivals continue annually. Summer wouldn’t be summer in Newquay without surfboards and camper vans!
However, there’s another side to Newquay. Positioned on the North Atlantic coast, there are other fantastic beaches and attractions to visit. Watch the colourful fishing boats bob in the harbour, wander around the beautiful gardens and enjoy some great places to eat.
Newquay Fish Festival
Each September, Newquay goes back to its roots and celebrates with a Fish Festival at the harbour. Originally a small pilchard fishing port, the town grew when it became fashionable to take the sea air in Victorian times. As the new rail travel reached Newquay, hotels sprang up and seaside holidays began.
For a glimpse of the past, you can visit Huer’s Hut on the Towan seafront. The small white building was used by huers, or pilchard spotters, who would stay up watching the sea noon and night for shoals to make an appearance.
Whilst at Towan beach you can’t fail to notice a house perched precariously on a small high rock, connected only by a narrow footbridge. Reputedly the haunt of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, author of Sherlock Holmes, ‘The Island’ has to be one of the most unusually situated homes in the country.
Boating Lake, Gardens & Leisure Facilities
Beyond the beaches, there’s a pretty boating lake, gardens and a leisure park. Trenance Leisure Park has a miniature railway, crazy golf and a pitch and putt, playgrounds, a large outdoor skatepark and tennis courts. For gym facilities and a swimming pool head to Waterworld, where there’s also a fun pool.
Trenance Gardens and the boating lake are close by. Ask at Tourist Information for a Tree Walk guide to all the flora and fauna in the park, enjoy a walk and then a delicious cream tea in the tea rooms afterwards.
When staying near the town, it’s a great opportunity to visit the aquarium and zoo, catch a film at the cinema or head into town for some shopping before hitting the beaches and enjoying an ice cream. There’s plenty to choose from!
If you’re eating out then Fistral offers an array of eateries with spectacular Atlantic views. At Rick Stein’s Fistral you can have tasty fish and chips and authentic Indian dishes. There are also pizzas, pies and pasties readily available at some of the other eateries.
In town, there are various coffee shops, takeaways and pubs. Newquay town centre isn’t big but there’s plenty on offer.
Venture further afield to Newquay’s outskirts and you’ll find our own Beaucliffes Restaurant set overlooking Porth beach.
Another two miles along the coast, head to Watergate Bay where The Beach Hut offers anything from their signature Extreme Hot Chocolate to burgers and fresh seafood. There’s also Zachry’s offering classical and contemporary dishes and Wax with its range of pizzas, burgers and contemporary dishes.
Just 3 miles east of Newquay you can visit Trerice, a historic manor house at Kestle Mill. Managed by The National Trust, the Elizabethan house and gardens were used in the original 1970s BBC production of Poldark and are where author Winston Graham drew inspiration for his series of novels.
To the south lies the Gannel Estuary. Walkable at low tide, a ferry boat operates during peak season. A haven for wildlife, cross over to Crantock where the coastline to Holywell Bay is protected by The National Trust.
To the north, Watergate Bay, once frequented by The Beatles whilst filming their Magical Mystery Tour, offers a long stretch of golden sand sheltered by high rocks.
Further on from this, you’ll enter Cornwall’s mining country and heritage coastline. There are some wonderful walks past old engine houses precariously perched on the cliff tops.
To the north past Watergate Bay, there’s Mawgan Porth, another pretty cove and then the spectacular rock stacks at Bedruthan. Stop at the café or venture down the steep steps when they’re open.
From here there are seven spectacular bays and beaches before reaching the pretty harbour town of Padstow. Cross over on the ferry to Rock and explore up to Tintagel and Port Isaac or take The Camel Trail to Wadebridge and Bodmin.