Padstow Things to See and Do

It may be known as “Padstein”, but there’s a lot more to this old harbour town than famous fish restaurants. Naturally, eating out is a big part of visiting Padstow (see our recommendations for Padstow food and drink), but there are also beaches, boat trips and one of the best family cycling trails in the south west.


The estuary at Padstow is busy with leisure boats as well as the fishing fleet. If you like the idea of a laid-back cruise, book onto the Jubilee Queen with her well-stocked bar, and see the stunning north coast of Cornwall from the sea. The Sealife Safari boats head out in search of seals and other marine wildlife: you may even spot dolphins or a basking shark.

A must-do boat trip is the short ride from the harbour to Rock, on the other side of the estuary. Pick up the little Black Tor ferry, and enjoy the ten-minute trip across to Rock. It’s worth doing, as the drive would take you around half an hour. When you reach Rock, you’ll find a pleasant sandy beach and a choice of places to eat. You may even spot a famous face or two in “Chelsea-on-Sea”…

Unlike St Ives or Newquay, Padstow isn’t generally seen as a beach holiday location. However, head out of town and you’ll find some of the best sandy beaches in Cornwall.

If you walk along the coast path from the harbour, the first beach you come to is a favourite picnic spot, St George’s Cove, followed by dog-friendly Tregirls. Popular Daymer Bay is just across the estuary close to Rock, or make the short drive out to Harlyn Bay. This family and dog-friendly beach has rock pools, a surf school and great swimming.

The Camel Trail is a popular path runs the 18 miles from Padstow to Wenford Bridge. It runs along the former railway line, so its flat terrain makes a super-easy cycling trail for families and rookies. On your way, you’ll pass through lots of coastal and rural scenery, including Pinkson Creek with its many different birds.

Not brought your bike? There are several cycle hire places in the area, including Camel Trail Cycle Hire. Alternatively, enjoy a walk along the multi-use route. If walking’s your thing, pick up the South West Coast Path at Padstow, and enjoy the glorious ocean views.

Jubilee Queen

Jubilee Queen Visit

Camel Trail Cycle Hire

Camel Trail Cycle Hire Visit

Harlyn Surf School

Harlyn Surf School Visit

Black Tor Ferry

Padstow, Cornwall PL28 8AQ, UK

View in Google Maps

National Lobster Hatchery

National Lobster Hatchery, The National Lobster Hatchery, South Quay, Padstow, UK

View in Google Maps

Padstow Museum

Station Road, Padstow, UK

View in Google Maps

Padstow Sealife Safaris

N Quay, Padstow PL28 8AF, UK

View in Google Maps

Prideaux Place

Prideaux Place, Prideaux Place, Padstow PL28 8RP, UK

View in Google Maps

The Jubilee Queen

North Quay Parade, Padstow PL28 8AF, UK

View in Google Maps