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If alfresco dining for two is at the top of your holiday to-do list, there’s nowhere better than Cornwall. The county is home to some wonderfully secluded spots that offer the perfect place for a love-filled picnic, from sunup to sundown. Find out where to lay your blanket with our guide to Cornwall’s most romantic picnic spots.
Escape the bustling streets of St Ives with an open-air lunch above the sand of Porthmeor Beach. With its ribbon of golden sand and bracing Atlantic surf, Porthmeor captures the spirit of the Cornish coast at any time of year. Watch the sun sink into the sea atop Porthmeor’s shallow cliffs, or lay your blanket right on the sand. If you haven’t packed a picnic, Tourism St Ives recommend the classic seaside feast of fish and chips; the perfect accompaniment to a Cornish sunset.
Address: Porthmeor Beach, Saint Ives, TR26 1JZ
Visitor Information: Out of town parking is recommended as nearby roads can become congested. Alternatively, the train journey from St Erth to St Ives offers a relaxing and scenic way to access the beach.
Picnic among the magnolias of the Caerhays Estate on your next visit to Cornwall, and you’ll feel you’ve taken a trip to yesteryear. Caerhays Castle was built over two-hundred years ago in a picturesque valley overlooking Porthluney Cove, a secluded beach managed by the estate itself. Along with its private cove and turret-topped castle, Caerhays also features a 120 acre, Grade II listed garden, which is teeming with rare Chinese plants. The team at Tastes of Anglia recommend picnickers take a romantic stroll through the castle’s peaceful grounds, before settling on the rocks of Porthluney Cove to indulge in an alfresco supper beside the sea.
Address: Caerhays Estate, Gorran, St Austell, PL26 6LY
Visitor Information: The estate is open from 9am – 5.30pm daily between February and June each year; the beach is open all year, and here you will find a large car park.
For a picnic with a difference, make for the small town of Fowey on the south coast of Cornwall. Here, you’ll find the Fowey Picnic Boat, a wonderful river cruise offering a great way to see the sights of the River Fowey whilst enjoying a locally sourced picnic. Hop aboard Sunbeam, a charming 1930’s motor launch, for an afternoon of waterborne discovery, and hear a tale or two of Fowey’s history from the cruise’s friendly skipper, Brian. The boat operates a ‘bring-your-own’ picnic policy, however, a fresh, locally sourced lunch can be provided on request.
Address: 43 Polvillion Road, Fowey, Cornwall PL23 1HG
Visitor Information: River cruises can be as long or short as you’d like, with 2 hours being the usual duration. For bookings and enquiries, contact the Fowey Picnic Boat on 01726 833634 or via e-mail at email@example.com.
Ease your feet into the crystal-clear waters of Kenneggy Sand Beach and enjoy a delicious, fresh picnic in the midst of one of Cornwall’s most secluded beaches. This picnicking gem was chosen by Eva Seymour on Twitter, who suggested that Kenneggy is the perfect spot for a secluded lunch, even during the summer months. Kenneggy’s seclusion is due to its remoteness; there’s no parking nearby, meaning the only way to access the sand is via a twenty-minute walk from Praa Sands along the Cornish Coast Path. Don’t be put off by this however; if you’re looking for a romantic picnic spot, there’s no better place.
Address: Kennegy Cove, Penzance
Visitor Information: Please be aware that Kenneggy Cove has limited access and no facilities, which may make it unsuitable for some travellers. Access to the beach is via two steel ladders, and there is a risk of being cut off at high tide. Check tide times before visiting to ensure your own safety.
Embark on a hike into the wild landscape of Bodmin Moor and you’ll be spoilt for choice from a picnicking point of view. One of the best places to lay your tartan rug amid this evocative landscape is Helman Tor, a little-known peak once home to a Neolithic Hill Fort. Clamber to the summit of this rocky tor and enjoy majestic views across the vast moorland; sights to look out for include Brown Willy, Bodmin Beacon, and on a clear day, the South Coast itself. Plus, whether you choose to rise early or stay late, Helman Tor is the perfect place to watch the sun rise and set – just don’t forget the camera.
Address: Bodmin, Cornwall, PL30 5DF
Visitor Information: Car parking can be found at Helman Tor, Breney Common and Red Moor. Keen walkers should follow the Wilderness Trail, an 8-mile circuit taking in the tor as well as its adjoining wildlife reserve.
For the ultimate picture-perfect picnic destination, make for Mawgan Porth, an impressive beach and pretty village four miles north of Newquay on Cornwall’s dramatic Atlantic seaboard. Elaine Smithies, who recommended Mawgan Porth on Twitter, spent part of her honeymoon watching the sunset over this stunning beach. Sunset or not, Mawgan Porth is a picnickers paradise, with a vast ribbon of sand, pretty country views and plenty of food outlets from which to pick up supplies. A great way to reach Mawgan Porth is along the Cornish Coast Path, which connects the village to its popular neighbour, Newquay.
Address: Mawgan Porth, Cornwall
Visitor Information: This sheltered cove is monitored by RNLI lifeguards throughout the summer, making it a safe option for most visitors. You’ll find a large car park near the beach, as well as toilets and other facilities.
Looking for somewhere to curl up and feel the love after your picnic? Check out our selection of cottages in Cornwall.