The Best Picnic Spots in Cornwall - For a bite to eat by the Cornish Coast
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 easily be shared with friends and family. It's always great to get outdoor in my opinion and nature is good for us all, so head out on a sunny day and spend the extra time among the fresh air and beautiful surroundings whilst enjoying a tasty treat.
We have made a list of the best eight picnic locations to visit on the stunning Cornish Coast, so why not invite loved ones and create a tasty picnic hamper to enjoy lunch al fresco whilst heading to a few of our favourite places among Cornwall's Great Outdoors and explore the south west coast path as it sweeps above the never-ending beach's of Cornwall.
So why a Picnic on Cornwall's stunning coast?
The Cornish Coast is one of a kind. No other coastline in Italy or anywhere on earth compares to the rugged cliffs, golden sand beach's, famous landmarks and sparkling sea waters of this region, found along the southern coastlines of England.
The south west coast path is famous across the UK and Cornwall hosts only the most unique and exotic beaches around with white sands (your unlikely to find a pebble beach here) that are perfect for fun days relaxing with friends and family, or capturing pictures of seascapes from around Cornwall with your camera. There's no shortage of things to do in Cornwall but you can't go far wrong to visit some of its vast 697 km (422 mi) of stunning cliff, beach's and coves to find some of the best picnic spots.
Here are our favourite 8 locations for a Cornish Beach Picnic.
1: Gwithian Beach - Hayle
If you want to step away from all the hustle and bustle that urban life has to offer than you can't go far wrong than to visit the Cornish coastal gem that is Gwithian Beach for a Picnic with the Family.
Only just across from St Ives Bay and close to the national trust Godrevy lighthouse, this stunning beach is perfect for having a relaxing time whilst enjoying some great views, the beach is rather long as well at around three miles in length so find a spot for a picnic whilst watching the surfers catching waves or the gulls swooping around Godrevy Lighthouse.
There are ample parking spots so you won't have too far to carry your wicker basket making it a really great picnic spot. The location is rather easy to find and is located rather close to Hayle, you can follow your satnav to TR27 5BT for the big dedicated carpark.
Find our more about Gwithian Towans Beach at https://www.cornwall-beaches.co.uk/north-coast/gwithian.htm
One of our Photographic Prints of Godrevy Lighthouse for Sale
2: Watergate Bay - Newquay
With Golden Sands Stretching to the Horizon, you can rest assured that you will be able to find that little bit of Watergate Bay Beach all to yourself without the risk of someone plonking their picnic blanket down too close to yours, which make it a top place for a secluded picnic spot.
As well as a great location for a picnic, there are lots of water sports activities going on at the beach to help you work up an appetite; from kite surfing and body boarding to kayaking and more. Afterwards, dry off and spend the rest of the afternoon grazing with a picnic and enjoying the scenery.
Watergate Bay isn't too far from Newquay so be sure to hit the shops on the way to stock on any Picnic essentials.
Watergate Bay has good parking facilities on site and your well within walking distance of the beach. You can find out more at https://www.cornwall.gov.uk/transport-parking-and-streets/parking/cornwall-council-car-parks/watergate-bay-newquay-tr8-4ad/
3: Perranporth Beach - North Coast
Perranporth also known as Perran Beach is somewhere I have visited many times over my youth for family days out and picnics on the beach and whilst it can get busy at the times, the great length of Perranporth Beach at over 2 miles long can normally guarantee you a secluded spot. Just be careful as some of the beach is tidal and its possible to become cut of on the stretches towards Hollywell.
We would highly recommend a visit to Perranporth beach and whilst your there why not have a drink in the watering hole (somewhere I have spent many nights) https://www.thewateringhole.co.uk
After an afternoon spent picnicking, you can stretch off the calories with a two-mile jolly along the coastal path to Ligger Point (but only as long as the tide is out of course). There are also many dunes along the route for better elevation across the bay
Parking at Perran Beach is plentiful with a wide array of carparks in the local town of Perranporth.
4: Carbis Bay - St Ives
Carbis Bay isn't just a location for a great picnic by the sea, It has a variety of different things for one to do and see. The sand is very soft, the little waves are very tranquil and it is also a very peaceful place to be with spectacular views that stretch into the distance.
While on your visit here you can take in the beautiful views around you of other sandy beaches such as St Ives and Porthkidney Beach (If your going to walk to Porthkidney Beach just make sure you have enough tide to get there and back safely) The area really does surround you with beauty and its a perfect place for a beach picnic.
Why not head out for a later Picnic for Dinner or even still why not undertake a BBQ among the splendid Cornish Coast.
Parking for the beach is by a small beach side carpark, so be sure to get there early to secure a spot if not parking if located further away, for more info about parking at Carbis Bay see https://www.cornwall.gov.uk/transport-parking-and-streets/parking/cornwall-council-car-parks/porthrepta-carbis-bay-tr26-2nz
5: Harlyn Bay - North Cornwall
When you ask parents where they like to take their children on a summer outing in Cornwall, there is a good chance Harlyn Bay will be the first place they mention. Nestled along the Northern Coast of Cornwall, this surrounding area has a number of spectacular coastal parks where dogs are welcome! Hence its one of the many picnic spots in Cornwall.
You'll love picnicking right next to the freshwater stream or the Bay itself or why not find a spot on the coast path for a elevated view of the Bay, this area really does offer a range of opportunities and locations for a scenic picnic location, just make sure to bring your deck chairs, put up the windbreak and enjoy a picnic whilst the children play in the rock pools of Harlyn Bay.
You can learn more about Harlyn Bay and where to park on the Visit Cornwall Website
6: Marazion Beach - St Michaels Mount
Marazion Beach on the South Cornish Coast, is a great place for a picnic for the whole family and is one of the many great picnic spots on the south coast, for starters there is ample parking available across several carparks all right by the beach, the backdrop to the beach is the iconic and stunning national trust St Michaels Mount which comprises a castle build in 1135 on the Island.
Marazion village is also full of quirky shops and pubs, so if the weather turns bad you can head into the dry for a drink of meal, we would recommend the Cutty Sark Restaurant which we enjoyed during a recent trip to Cornwall.
During low tide it is quite possible to walk to the mount and back so get your timing correct and check the tides at https://www.tidetimes.org.uk/ if you fancy a visit.
One of our Photographic St Michaels Mounts Prints for Sale
7: Kynance Cove - The Lizard
Looking at this cove from the coastal path has to be one of the most stunning views in Cornwall in certainly a great picnic spot. Set on the Lizard Peninsular, the jewelled sea against the white sand littered with rocks formations is simply breath-taking and as such makes this location perfect for a Picnic with loved ones.
Spend time on the coastal path to see sweeping views as far as the eye can see or when the tide is out you can go down and explore the caves and rocks that look so dramatic. Get there early and experience the peace and quiet of swimming away from the crowds all before your Picnic of-course.
The Parking for Kynance Cove is a little bit further away and it does involve a walk of between 10 and 20 mins depending on the route involved which can be steep in places, so its not recommended for small Children.
For parking for the area visit https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/kynance-cove
8: Lands End and Sennen Cove
Two for the price of one here, well they are so close. If your looking for views as far as the eye can see and stunning cliff top locations, Land's End has you covered.
Lands End is famous for being the most westerly point in England right down on Cornwall's South Coast. The views here are magnificent and a great place to have a picnic or BBQ perhaps in the evening to watch a gorgeous sunset.
It is a great spot to walk along the south west coastal path so take your deck chairs and your picnic and find that vantage point for some great sunset watching.
Lands End is served by a private carpark, see here for more https://landsend-landmark.co.uk/plan-your-visit/
If however your after some purely beach spots then your in luck, not far from Land's End lies the small village of Sennen and Sennen Cove is a beautiful beach right on the most westerly point of England, the water here is often teal green and blue and makes a perfect spot for any visitor.
Sennen Cove has several decent sized carparks so finding a car parking spot shouldn't be too difficult and then its just a short walk to the beach.
One of our Landscape Prints of Eny's Donan Arch
This is just a selection of locations to visit and I hope you find them useful when deciding your day out in Cornwall.
What's your favorite picnic spots in Cornwall? Let us know in the Comments box below!
More of our guides on everything Cornish
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 it stunning white sandy beaches and miles of coastline to explore
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
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.
Thank you for reading this article, please feel to share it with your friends and please check out all my photography - and Cornish Seascape Prints for Sale
Sebastien Coell Photography