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Family fun in Cornwall that won’t break the bank

Go Rock Pooling

Inspire a taste for adventure and check out the local marine life with a spot of rock pooling. There are some idyllic rock pools to explore at low tide in Perranporth and St Agnes, where you are likely to discover small crabs, fish, shrimp, periwinkles and barnacles. You might even see a starfish. Take a net or a bucket to examine the creatures in greater detail.

Climb the Dunes

If you’re feeling energetic, head towards Penhale at the northern end of Perranporth Beach. Here, you’ll find the areas tallest sand dunes. Climb to the top for dramatic views along the coast before running or jumping back down for maximum exhilaration.

Drop a Line for Crabs

Kids love crabbing. There’s something magical about dropping a line in the water and seeing what climbs on. Grab a crabbing line and bucket from a local beach shop and then head over to the Gannel Estuary at low to mid tide where you’ll find deep rock pools and a footbridge perfect for crabbing.

Swim in a Sea Pool

Make a splash for one of North Cornwall’s dramatic sea water swimming pools. There are a few around, but one of our favourites is perched beneath the cliffs at Porthtowan. It’s not particularly big but it’s a beautiful spot for some outdoor swimming without braving the crashing waves on the beach.

Pedal the Coast to Coast Trail

Between Portreath on the north coast and Devoran on the south lies an off-road trail that cuts through sensational Cornish countryside. It’s free to use if you bring your own bikes, or else bikes can be hired in Portreath or at Bissoe, halfway along the trail.

Go Wild in the Woods

Most people visit Cornwall to relax or play on the beach. But it might not be beach weather every day. When the sun fails to shine or it’s too cool, take the opportunity to discover some of Cornwall’s wonderful woods. Here on the north coast we have the wonderful Tehidy Woods Country Park, with acres of trees to climb and over 9 miles of trails to explore.

Search for Geocaches

Children of all ages love a treasure hunt, so it’s easy to see why Geocaching is so popular. Simply download a geocache app on your phone and head out in search of caches. They are all over the place in Cornwall, in villages, on the coast path and along footpaths through the countryside. It’s a great way to get the kids out walking!

Row a Boat

For a tranquil afternoon on the water, head over to Trenance Boating Lake in Newquay where you can hire a rowing boat or a pedalo for fun on the small ornamental lake. For a special treat, book yourselves in for lunch or afternoon tea at the Lakeside Café.

Hang Around in an Adventure Playground

Heartlands in Pool is home to Cornwall’s largest adventure playground. And the best part is that it’s completely free. It’s a wonderful facility of timber climbing frames with swings, slides and sandpits where the kids can have fun and run off some energy. When playtime is up, visit the mining museum or walk around the diaspora gardens, which were created to commemorate the many thousands of people who emigrated with their mining skills and spread Cornish culture across the globe.

Go Seal Spotting

One of the best places to see seals is at Gwithian near Hayle. Just north of the main beach is Mutton Cove, where a colony of seals can be seen lazing on the beach and frolicking in the sea. Numbers thin in the summer, but you should see seals most days. Otherwise the surrounding cliffs and coastline are worth the short trek anyway. Or head to the harbours in Newquay and St.Ives to see their resident seals bobbing about the water.

Walk to St Michael’s Mount

As one of Cornwall’s most iconic landmarks, St Michael’s Mount should be on everyone’s holiday checklist. This impressive island topped by a castle is connected to the mainland by a cobbled causeway which you can walk across at low tide. It’s free to walk across but you’ll need to pay to explore further than the beach and harbour at this National Trust property. Keep an eye on the tide though, unless you want to pay the small fee for the boat trip back to shore.

These are just a few of the wonderful family friendly things to see and do while on holiday in Cornwall. If you haven’t booked your summer holiday accommodation, please take a look at our holiday houses and cottages in and around the villages of Perranporth and St Agnes.


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