Discover things to do in West Cornwall

Brimming with ancient heritage and rocky, wild natural scenery, West Cornwall is an unforgettable holiday location for those who enjoy exploring captivating landscapes steeped in history.

The area is home to both Land’s End and the stunning Lizard Peninsula – an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty dotted with smugglers coves, unique beaches, small fishing communities and an abundance of flora and fauna.

Walk along the many footpaths – both amid the inland heathland and along the coastline – and discover historic mining settlements, ancient Iron Age sites, fishing villages and more modern harbour towns. If cultural heritage is what you’re looking for, don’t miss St Michael’s Mount – a medieval castle set on its own island just off the coast of the small town of Marazion.

As with much of Cornwall, you’ll find plenty of opportunities to enjoy gorgeous sandy beaches and the activities that come with them, including surfing and boat trips. Visit the towns and villages of the area, including Penzance and St Ives, and discover a wealth of traditional Cornish pubs, plus restaurants and cafes with an artistic atmosphere.

Places not to miss

Not sure where you want to visit while you stay in West Cornwall? Here are some of our favourite places to spend time in.

St Ives

St Ives

The family-friendly and artistic town of St Ives has long been a popular tourist destination. With its selection of cafes, bars and restaurants lining the tiny cobbled streets, attractions such as the Tate St Ives, coastal walks, and water sports such as surfing are all on offer, making it easy to see why the town is so busy in summer.


If you’re visiting in May, a trip to see Helston’s ‘Flora Day’ celebrations is a must. Other than this, the town is historically picturesque: cobbled streets and ‘kennels’ running down the sides of streets, plus plenty of historical attractions. For families, the nearby Flambards theme park promises a great day out. 


St Michael's Mount


One of the biggest attractions of this small town is the stunning view it offers of nearby St Michael’s Mount – just a short walk across the beach from the town. The beach itself is a long stretch of golden sand with a view that stretches for miles along the coast. 


If you enjoy outdoor activities, Hayle is the perfect town to base your holiday in West Cornwall. Godrevy Head is a particularly popular walking spot, and the wild countryside that surrounds the town is covered in well-maintained footpaths. The sandy 3 mile stretch of beach caters for all tastes – from a family-friendly day out building sandcastles to sailing and surfing. 




The town of Penzance, situated on Mounts Bay, prides itself on its mild climate. A visit to Chapel Street is a must for fans of traditional pubs, while elsewhere in the town shops, galleries, museums and gourmet restaurants provide enough entertainment for rainy days. 


Things to do in West Cornwall

From postcard perfect villages to bustling traditional fishing harbours, West Cornwall is a beautiful location to explore

Be inspired by our latest guides

Browse our selection of Cornish highlights for ideas of things to see and do

Our Guide to Beaches in St Ives

Beaches in West Cornwall

A visit to the historic Cornish town of St Ives wouldn’t be complete without spending time on at least one of the area’s beautiful beaches. Find out which stretches of sand are not to be missed in our guide. Porthkidney Beach …

Spotlight: The Cornish Seal Sanctuary

Attractions in West Cornwall

Plan your visit to the Cornish Seal Sanctuary, a fantastic tourist attraction where you can learn all about Cornish sea life.

Poldark Filming Locations in Cornwall

Arts & Heritage

Love Poldark? Discover the stunning filming locations in Cornwall which featured in the series. From Porthgwarra to St Agnes Head, learn more about where your favourite Poldark were filmed and how you can experience them yourself!

Family-Friendly Museums in Cornwall


Stuck for something to do with the family on your trip down to Cornwall? Then take a look at some of the best family friendly museums in the area!

3 of the Best Theme Parks in Cornwall

Theme Parks

If you fancy a family trip to Cornwall then these three theme parks are perfect for children of all ages and provide an exciting alternative to a day at the beach.

Rainy Day Activities in Cornwall


A fantastic selection of rainy day activities in Cornwall, perfect for brightening up those darker days.

National Trust Properties in Cornwall


The Sykes Cottages guide on some of Cornwall's best National Trust owned properties.

The Best Beaches in Cornwall


A selection of the best beaches in Cornwall, from secluded coves to family friendly beaches, there is something to suit everyone.