Great things to See & Do on When Visiting Cornwall
Top ten exciting things to see and do when visiting Cornwall – ranked!
At the Southern End of Britain lies the coastal county of Cornwall with its 697 km (422 mi) of stunning coast encompassing an eclectic array of landscapes from high cliffs, stacks, coves and bays.
Cornwall provides you with easy access to many of its most beautiful coastal locations by hiking, walking or biking its 300 miles section of the South West Coast Path.
Cornwall is an area rich in history and industrial heritage as can be seen by the UNESCO world heritage site listed mining heritage.
During the 19th century Cornwall was home to some 2000 working mines and over 70% of the industrial worlds Tin once originated in Cornwall.
Today Cornwall is famous for being a beautiful and relaxing tourist destination home to many stunning views, sandy beaches, rugged coves, quaint towns and fishing villages with cobbled streets to visit offering an array of shops and restaurants for you to indulge in.
Here is our list of 10 great Cornish things to undertake when visiting Cornwall
1. St Michael’s Mount - Southern Cornwall
There’s something so frightfully enchanting about St Michael’s Mount, the castle that stands on top of the great rock that lies of the Cornish coast next to the historic village of Marazion.
The castle which started of its life as a Church and Priory began construction in 1135 when under possession of the Benedictine abbey of Mont St Michel in Normandy.
Since then St Michaels mount has stood the test of time and in today time it has become a popular tourist attraction in Southern Cornwall
The nearby village of Marazion's who's name derives from the two markets that used to take place in the area known as Marghas Byghan (Small Market) and Marghas Jew (Thursday Market) is the stop of point for a trip to the mount.
During low tide it is quite possible to walk to the mount and back from Marazion so get your timing correct and check the tides at https://www.tidetimes.org.uk/ if you fancy a visit.
If you visit at high tide though don't despair as throughout the summer months a ferry operates between St Michaels mount and the mainland.
Did you know that Marazion is older than Penzance and was the original large sized town of the area!
Find out more and get tickets at https://www.stmichaelsmount.co.uk/
St Michaels mount is somewhere I have photographed many times over the years why not check out one of our St Michaels Mounts Prints for Sale such as this one with the Milky way above.
2. The National Lobster Hatchery - Padstow - North Cornwall
The National Lobster Hatchery is a marine conservation, research and education charity based in Padstow, Cornwall, UK.
What makes them unique is that their work is specifically related to a commercial species – The European Lobster which over the last hundreds years have been highly in decline.
The National Lobster Hatchery over the last few years have successfully established themselves as a centre of expertise on a global scale.
You can visit the hatchery whilst in Padstow and learn more about these cool creatures lives.
Did you know the European lobster usually live up to 54 years of age although they can often live up to 75 years of age in captivity. The oldest on record was said to be 140 years old and was an American lobster called George who weighed over 9kg!
Find out more and get tickets at https://www.nationallobsterhatchery.co.uk/
3. Eden Project - St Blazey
There’s no doubt about it for The Eden Project, it’s indeed one of the most famous tourist attractions to visit in Cornwall.
Underneath its spectacular dome visitors are able to experience two biomes as well as a great deal of other fun activities such as watching films and conducting guided tours through an array of different areas.
Make sure to set aside enough time to visit the Eden Project there is surprisingly a lot to learn at the Eden Project and many interesting things to see, especially if your explore the Rainforest Biome in which you will find a new and exciting array of flora.
Find out more about the Eden Project and get tickets at https://www.edenproject.com
4. Minack Theatre - South Cornwall
The Minack Theatre is a must-see when you're on the Cornish coast. It has been featured in many photographs and Cornish Tourism guides and if your lucky enough to have an opportunity to see a live performance here it surely would be a memorable one.
The Minack Theatre was built in the 30's by Rowena Cade for a performance of 'The Tempest' by Shakespeare, and it's a setting unlike any other.
Today, the Minack offers more than just this one Shakespeare play -- thanks to modern technology, select performances from around the globe are brought here so that visitors can enjoy a very diverse range of performances throughout the summer months.
If you do want to see a performance make sure to book in advance and check the calendar as performances are not undertaken very often, you will also have to have the weather on your side, as it can get quite windy on a blustery day.
Find out what on at the Minack Theatre by checking out their website at https://minack.com/
5. Lost Gardens of Heligan
When we think of the Secret Garden, the children's novel that has been popular for more than 100 years. When Frances Hodgson Burnett first wrote the book, she had no idea it would spark so much interest and that her readers would still be enjoying it in the future.
If Burnett were able to imagine this scenario, there is no doubt she would also be proud of The Lost Gardens of Heligan which seem to be born out of creativity and a thirst for live and the natural world.
The beautiful grounds are just as stunning and worth a visit for anyone that wants to get out in nature and explore the green landscape.
The wonderful gardeners that worked hard to save these beautiful ruins of Britain's gardening past have done a marvellous in restoring them to their former glory.
There are lots to do and see at the Gardens from the Mud Maid to walking across the rope bridge that straddles the canopy.
Find out more at https://www.heligan.com/
6. Port Isaac - North Cornwall
Port Isaac is an awesome location that not only boasts a cool atmosphere, a great array of boutique shops and restaurants, but also some pretty impressive views and plenty of history.
Although it’s most frequently associated with the television show Doc Martin, this town on the north coast has its own legacy and history to boot, from its historic harbour Victorian architecture Port Isaac is worth a trip whenever the year.
Find out more about visiting Port Isaac at https://www.visitcornwall.com/
7. Lands End - Southern tip of Cornwall
Lands End is famous for being the most westerly point in England right down on Cornwall's South Coast on the edge of the South West Coast path. The views here are magnificent whether you want to see a sunset or a storm.
It is a great spot to walk along the coastal path or simply pose by the iconic sign and look for America. or why not continue a bit further along the coast and spot the famous Enys Dodnan sea arch which can be very photogenic
Be sure to take your camera here the famous sea stack arch can be photographed from the headland, the area is full of dramatic rock formation to see.
You can also visit lands ends tourist attractions for a great day out for the family and once you have finished here be sure to check out the golden sands and stunning beaches at Sennen Cove.
Find out more at https://landsend-landmark.co.uk/
8. Towanroath mine shaft at wheal Coates
Towanroath mine shaft is a beautiful and very scenic location right in an area of outstanding natural beauty. Its a great place to visit on the north Cornish coast, you can visit the old mine workings of wheal coates and bath yourself in the old mining history of Cornwall.
continue further down the cliff to find the National trust restored Towanroath mine shaft which lies in a stunning location looking across the beautiful Cornish coast and out to the Atlantic ocean.
This location is a real must visit for anyone wanting to take in a scenic view, get a bit of exercise and emerge yourself in a bit of local history.
For parking see https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/wheal-coates
9. Tate St Ives - South Cornwall
Tate St Ives is a great place for the art lover to visit, it manages to straddle both local and global culture by creating a truly unique display.
On the one hand, it pays homage to the specific history of its Cornish destination, and on the other, is open to everyone with a love for art that's larger than life.
Tate St Ives manages to be multifaceted by focusing on art in its many forms – be it sculpture or painting, installation or performance – and uniting them under one roof makes the gallery a place you can't wait to visit again!
St Ives Tate is quite a good gallery to visit for its practical installations and they try and immerse you in the art installations like the art balloon installation which was said to emphasis atoms and our journey through them.
For tickets and pricing to visit the Tate gallery find out more at https://www.tate.org.uk
10. Immerse yourself!
The 10th one isn't a place or a destination its just a recommendation to get involved in the Cornish Lifestyle, there are so many opportunities in Cornwall to undertake an exciting activity, the county is surrounded by its wonderful coastline so why not make use of the sea.
Why not give Surfing a try and hire a board or even give your hand a try at wind-surfing, kite-surfing or paragliding. Go horse riding across one of the many sandy beaches on Cornwall or stop by for a scenic view and enjoy a Cornish Afternoon or Cream tea in one of the local cafe's.
This is just a handful of the adventures that await you when visiting Cornwall
We would also recommend visiting the following great places to see in Cornwall.
- See the vibrant and atmospheric city of Newquay and enjoy the night life.
- Visit Tintagel Castle - The birthplace of King Arthur.
- Visit the stunning natural woods at Tehidy or Kennall Vale Nature Reserve
- Visit the dramatic from Bodmin Moor with its 200 Square KM's
- Explore the stunning coastline and relax with a Korev, Rattler or other Cornish Drink.
- Visit The Kind Arthur Statue at Tintagel
- Explore the many Dolmens and Neolithical burial chambers like Chûn Quoit, Lanyon Quoit, Mulfra Quoit, Pawton Quoit or Sperris Quoit
- Visit the ancient market town of Marazion or the end of the land at Lands End.
- Explore the picturesque Boscastle and learn about the witches at the witches museum
What's your favorite place to visit in Cornwall? Let us know in the Comments box below!
More of our guides on everything Cornish
The Top Picnic Spots in Cornwall - for a Beachside Lunch. Picnicking is one of Britain's oldest pastimes and one of those enjoyable activities that can be undertaken with friends and family whilst out doors, see our top places for a Cornish Picnic.
The Best Coastal Walks in Cornwall 2022
The Top 10 Best Cornwall Walks to have in 2022 | Cornwall is one of the most beautiful counties in England. With its rugged coastline | the views are nothing less than stunning. Here are the BEST COASTAL WALKS IN CORNWALL
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Meet the Author:
I am a Devon based photographer, who enjoys travel, hiking, rugby and photographing the beautiful world in which we live in, I see photography as a creative expression upon visiting beautiful places. Each picture often tells a story.
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