Our favourite things to do in Cornwall
Cornwall is a county that’s a constant in the coastal conversation. Whether you’re on a day trip, quick weekend break or something a little longer, you’ll never be short of things to do in this, England’s most south westerly county.
Take advantage of the magnificent seaside by heading down to some great beaches. Cornwall’s north and south coast both bring something slightly different to the table. With tourists swelling the local population in the busy months, there are an unrivalled number of places to entice and enthral you within Cornwall’s borders. Areas of national importance like Land’s End tie in with educational masterpieces like the Eden Project to create memories that last a lifetime. Come and see our favourite things to do in Cornwall.
Blue Reef Aquarium, Newquay
This aquarium isn’t simply a place to spot a few sea creatures. It educates and inspires visitors about the 71% of the earth’s surface that we all have so much more to learn about. You and your loved ones will come out of this masterpiece with a much greater understanding of the natural world. Blue Reef tackles contemporary issues head on, with climate change’s effect on all creatures that inhabit the water being at the forefront of their proposition.
Local marine life joins species from all four corners of the world in one special aquatic centre. Giant crabs, lobsters join tropical sharks in over 40 individual displays. The centre aptly overlooks the Atlantic Ocean, with displays revealing the incredible variety of life that are revealed beneath the depths of the world’s most undiscovered outposts. Not only will you leave here entertained, but you’ll also have an even better understanding of life beneath the water.
Bodmin and Wenford Railway
The Bodmin and Wenford Railway not only takes you to some of the best places to visit in Cornwall, but it also couples up as one of our favourite things to do in the county. The UK is a fantastic place for a heritage railway or two, but few can lay claim to what this route has in its locker. It’s the only heritage track that links to the actual commuter network in Cornwall.
Bodmin Parkway sits on the Cornish line to London and dedicates a platform to the steam locomotives that ferry passengers up and down the line. The old signal box is home to a café nowadays, a great refreshment point if you’re catching a connection. From here, you’ll be taken north past Colleslogget Halt and Boscarne Junction to the terminus at Bodmin General. Diesel rolling stock also transports you through this picturesque part of Cornwall, where you can grab a glimpse of the rolling hills and Cornish countryside as you chug along the track.
Eden Project, Bodelva
The recipient of the Best UK Leisure Attraction for not one, not two, but five years running is a sure-fire inclusion on our list of favourite things to do in Cornwall. Known as the Eighth Wonder of the World by many, the global garden was the first of its kind when it opened on a disused quarry site in 2001. Since then, it’s gone on to enthral visitors and inspire other places that add awareness to the environment.
A gateway between plants and people, the site is the size of 30 back-to-back football pitches, meaning you’re never short of places to explore. Walking through here is like travelling around the four corners of the world, with each environment representing tropics whose atmosphere could only previously be felt by jetting off on a plane. You’ll leave with an even greater insight into how our planet hosts us, and with events held regularly, a return visit will always offer another fascinating experience.
Flambards Theme Park, Helston
This fantastic family attraction is home to a range of rides for all ages. It’s perfect for an awe-inspiring adrenaline rush and all-round great day out. Catering for thrill seekers and relaxers, each ride will leave you wanting another go. Award-winning exhibitions are also hosted here, with the fantastic “The Victorian Village” and “Britain in the Blitz” particular highlights of ours.
Little ones will love the indoor play area, and the Chemist Shop’s Time Capsule actually lay untouched for over 100 years before it was moved to Flambards. Whatever the weather, the theme park is a fantastic thing to do with the family with plenty to see and do.
Land’s End is one of a select bunch of British landmarks that are genuinely known around the world. Visitors flock from far and wide to visit England’s most westerly point. For centuries, it’s stood as the first sign of Britain from the wild Atlantic, with Longships Lighthouse marking the spot where treacherous water becomes the safety of the dry land.
The clifftop trail is a great thing to do here, affording fantastic views of the coastal surroundings and putting into perspective one of the most epic areas of Cornwall. A range of dining options are in the vicinity, with the appropriately named Land’s End restaurant serving local produce that always goes down a treat with visitors. The odd adventure enthusiast kicks off a complete tour of Britain here, heading for John O’Groats located some 994 miles northeast.
Perranporth Beach, Perranporth
We couldn’t end of our list of favourite things to do in Cornwall without shouting out what’s arguably its finest beach. The incredible stretch of sand at Perranporth gives you a stunning space to settle down, relax and rejuvenate. Outside of all but the busiest periods, it’ll feel like you own the beach, such is the vast expanse of your surroundings.
At low tide, the sand extends for what seems like miles. We recommend a walk or cycle to Ligger Point, a great place to get the camera out and take some snaps of the Atlantic. When you’re done with exercise, head into the quaint Cornish village and sample some local delicacies. If you fancy a drink, the wonderful Watering Hole is right on the coast and welcomes all the family, including dogs.