15 Best Things To Do In Padstow, England

15 Best Things To Do In Padstow, England

By will

Padstow is a picturesque coastal town located in the county of Cornwall in England.

It has a long and rich history, and is now a popular holiday destination for visitors from all over the world.

With its beautiful sandy beaches, amazing seafood restaurants, and plenty of outdoor activities, there’s something for everyone in Padstow.

Here are 15 of the best things to do in Padstow that you won’t want to miss out on.

  • Enjoy a stroll along the harbour.
  • Explore the Camel Trail.
  • Take a tour of the harbour.
  • Visit Prideaux Place.
  • Go surfing at Treyarnon Bay.
  • If you’re looking for something more relaxed, enjoy a day at Watergate Bay.
  • Hike Bodmin Moor.
  • Enjoy a cream tea.
  • And don’t forget to sample some of the delicious Cornish dishes at the seafood restaurants.

There’s something for everyone in Padstow, so come and explore!

Stroll Along the Harbour

Padstow Harbour
Photo by Rob Farrow

Nothing beats a stroll along the beautiful Padstow harbour on a sunny day! The harbour is a bustling area full of life, and visitors can find plenty of activities to enjoy. From exploring the fish market to watching the boats come and go. The quaint shops and cafes lining the harbour walls provide a great opportunity to take a break and grab a bite to eat. You can also check out the local art galleries or take a boat ride out to the nearby islands.

There’s something for everyone at Padstow harbour! The harbour is a great spot to watch the sunset, and the many pubs and restaurants offer a great way to end the day. If you’re feeling adventurous, there’s plenty of opportunities for sailing and kayaking. The nearby beaches are perfect for a summer day spent relaxing in the sun.

Whether you’re looking for a day of sightseeing or a night of entertainment, Padstow harbour is sure to provide an unforgettable experience.

Explore the Camel Trail

Pool beside the Camel Trail
Photo by Andy F

Take a leisurely stroll along the stunning Camel Trail and enjoy the beautiful scenery of Padstow. The Camel Trail is a stunning walk in North Cornwall that stretches along the banks of the River Camel, beginning in Padstow and ending in Wenfordbridge.

Along the path, you’ll be able to appreciate the stunning landscape of the Camel Estuary, the old railway viaducts, and the beautiful wildlife. You’ll also be able to take in the many attractions of Padstow, including the historic harbour and the quaint cafes and restaurants.

The trail is perfect for walking, cycling, or even horse riding, and it’s the perfect way to explore the area and take in the sights. Whether you’re looking for a leisurely stroll or a more adventurous journey, the Camel Trail is an ideal choice.

Visit Prideaux Place

Prideaux Place
Photo by David Dixon

For a unique experience, visit Prideaux Place in Padstow, England – a stunning Elizabethan manor house with 500 years of history.

With its magnificent gardens, an enchanting deer park, and centuries-old buildings, it’s one of the best attractions in the area.

I was in awe as I explored the grounds and admired the incredible architecture. The grand entrance hall, with its intricate wooden carvings, and the stunning stained glass windows, were particularly impressive.

The house boasts a rich and fascinating history, with tales of past owners, visitors, and events.

There is also an on-site cafe, where visitors can take a break from exploring and enjoy a cup of tea and a light snack. It’s the perfect way to relax and take in the beautiful surroundings.

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A visit to Prideaux Place is a truly unforgettable experience, and one I would highly recommend to anyone visiting Padstow.

Enjoy a Day at Watergate Bay

Head to Watergate Bay for an unforgettable day of relaxation and adventure.

Located just a few miles from Padstow, Watergate Bay is a stunning beach with plenty to offer. The beach stretches for two miles and is lined with golden sand, making it the perfect spot for sunbathing or a picnic.

If you’re feeling adventurous, there are plenty of activities to enjoy. The beach is well-known for its excellent surfing conditions, with a variety of breaks for all levels of surfer. If you’re a beginner, head to the beach’s Surf School to learn the basics. Watergate Bay also offers kitesurfing, stand-up paddleboarding, and kayaking, and there’s even a wakepark if you want to take your watersports to the next level.

When you’re done with your water activities, you can explore the stunning cliff tops and pathways that line the bay. The views of the beach and the sea are breathtaking and are a great way to relax after a busy day.

If you’re looking for a bite to eat, there are plenty of restaurants and cafes to choose from. The area also boasts a number of bars and pubs, perfect for enjoying a few drinks and watching the sunset.

So if you’re looking for a day of fun and relaxation, look no further than Watergate Bay.

Hike Bodmin Moor

Explore the wild and rugged beauty of Bodmin Moor on foot and discover its many hidden gems. Located just a short drive away from Padstow, Bodmin Moor is a great escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.

Take your time and wander along its winding trails, taking in the stunning views of the rolling moors and lush greenery that surround you. Along the way, you can visit the historic Jamaica Inn, where the famous novel by Daphne du Maurier was set, and explore the mysterious Brown Willy, the highest point on the moor.

For a real challenge, tackle the Ten Tors Challenge, a two-day hike that covers up to 55 miles of the moor. Get away from it all and enjoy a peaceful and invigorating walk through Bodmin Moor.

Visit Padstow Museum

After an amazing day exploring Bodmin Moor, it’s time to experience the history of Padstow. One of the best places to do that is at Padstow Museum.

Located near the harbor in the center of town, the museum is housed inside a historic building that dates back to the 16th century.

Inside, visitors can explore the history of the town, from its maritime past to its present day status as a popular tourist destination. There are also galleries dedicated to the life and works of Padstow’s most famous son, the artist and author, Norman Nicholson.

In addition, the museum houses a collection of art and artifacts from the local area, offering visitors a chance to explore the culture and history of Padstow.

A visit to the museum is a great way to get a sense of the town’s past and present, and it’s sure to be an educational and entertaining experience.

Wander the Streets of Old Town

Meandering the streets of Padstow’s historic Old Town gives visitors a glimpse of its charming past. The cobblestone streets, lined with quaint cottages and colorful blossom trees, instantly transport you to a simpler time.

The centuries-old architecture and quaint pubs create a unique atmosphere that is sure to delight any visitor.

The narrow streets of Old Town are home to several of the city’s attractions, including the Padstow Museum. Here, visitors can learn about the city’s past and see artifacts from its rich history.

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There are also several shops and restaurants to explore, including locals’ favorites like the Rick Stein Fish and Chips Restaurant.

All in all, Old Town is the perfect place to wander and explore the unique character and culture of Padstow.

Shop at the Padstow Craft Centre

Take a playful stroll through the Padstow Craft Centre and get lost in its charming selection of handmade items!

The Padstow Craft Centre is a delightful shopping experience for all ages. It showcases a wide variety of handmade items, including jewelry, pottery, glass, woodworking, clothing, and more.

You can explore the unique gifts and products made by local artisans and find something special for yourself or a loved one. There’s something for everyone, from the casual browser to the serious collector.

Plus, you can always find a friendly conversation or two while you wander.

So, come explore the Padstow Craft Centre and enjoy a unique shopping experience.

Stop by the Padstow Lifeboat Station

Stroll along the waterfront of Padstow and take a peek inside the lifeboat station, where you can find dedicated volunteers ready to set sail in case of an emergency.

The Padstow Lifeboat Station is a first-class rescue service and a great opportunity to learn more about this vital part of coastal life. You can visit the lifeboat station and meet the volunteers who work there, as well as take a tour of the station and its boats.

The station is open to the public and is a great chance to discover more about the brave men and women who keep the seas safe. You can also find out more about the station’s history and how it has developed over the years.

So, if you’re looking for something a little different to do in Padstow, visiting the lifeboat station is a great way to gain a greater appreciation for the work that goes into keeping the coast of England safe.

Take a Boat Trip Around Rock

Cruise along the picturesque coastline of Rock and experience the beauty of the area from a unique perspective. Booking a boat trip around Rock is an excellent way to make the most of your time in Padstow.

The area is renowned for its stunning scenery, so there’s no better way to explore the coastline than by boat. You can choose a leisurely cruise or a more adventurous one, depending on your preferences.

On the cruise, you’ll be able to spot a variety of wildlife, including seals, dolphins, and a rich variety of seabirds. Additionally, you can take in the stunning views of the surrounding coastline, with its rugged cliffs and picturesque coves.

You’ll also be able to take a closer look at some of the historical landmarks that dot the coastline. With a boat trip, you’ll be able to experience the area in a way that simply isn’t possible on land.

Visit Padstow Town Beach

Soak up the sun and enjoy the tranquility of Padstow Town Beach, an inviting sandy beach near the charming town of Padstow.

This picturesque beach is the perfect spot to relax and take a break from the hustle and bustle of the city. With its calm, crystal-clear waters, it’s the perfect place to take a swim or just sit back and enjoy the stunning views.

The beach is also a great spot for a picnic, with plenty of space to spread out and enjoy a leisurely lunch. There are also plenty of restaurants and pubs nearby, as well as a variety of shops to explore.

Whether you’re looking for a peaceful spot to unwind or an exciting spot to explore, Padstow Town Beach is the ideal destination.

Enjoy a Cream Tea

After a day at the beach, why not indulge in a traditional cream tea? Enjoy a freshly-baked scone, clotted cream, and a pot of tea in one of Padstow’s quaint cafes for a truly memorable experience.

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Whether you’re looking for a place to relax and have a leisurely tea, or a quick snack on the go, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. The cafes offer a range of delicious pastries and cakes, as well as a variety of tea and coffee options.

The combination of clotted cream and jam on a freshly-baked scone is hard to beat. And while that alone is enough to make the experience special, the atmosphere in Padstow’s cafes really takes it to the next level. From the warm and inviting atmosphere to the friendly staff, you’ll be sure to have a memorable time.

So the next time you’re in Padstow, be sure to take a break and enjoy a cream tea!

Taste Cornish Dishes at the Seafood Restaurants

Experience the unique flavors of Cornwall by visiting one of Padstow’s seafood restaurants. Whether you’re looking for traditional dishes like fish and chips, or something more unique like a Cornish pasty, the restaurants in Padstow offer something for everyone.

Take your time and taste the local flavors that are unique to the area. Sample a variety of dishes made with the freshest seafood, from local lobster to mussels and crab.

After a meal, be sure to try one of the many delicious desserts made with locally grown fruit. Enjoy a sweet treat like clotted cream, sticky toffee pudding, or a slice of apple pie with custard.

Padstow’s seafood restaurants are the perfect place to sample the flavors of Cornwall.

Take a Tour of the Harbour

Take a stroll along Padstow’s vibrant harbour and soak in the stunning views of the Cornish coast.

Explore the vibrant fishing village and see the boats bobbing in the harbour.

The quayside is filled with seafood restaurants, pubs, and shops, making it the perfect spot to spend a few hours.

From the harbour, you can take a boat tour to see the sights of the town and the surrounding area.

You’ll be able to get a glimpse of the unique architecture, including the 13th century church of St Petroc’s.

You’ll also be able to spot dolphins and seals in the bay.

If you’re lucky, you may even see an otter or two!

Take your time to explore the harbour and discover the many hidden gems that Padstow has to offer.

With its beautiful scenery, relaxing atmosphere, and abundance of activities, it’s easy to see why a visit to Padstow’s harbour is one of the best things to do in the area.

Go Surfing at Treyarnon Bay

After taking a tour of the harbour, why not take a trip to Treyarnon Bay and hit the waves?

Located just a few miles from Padstow, Treyarnon Bay is one of the most popular surfing spots in the area.

With its rolling waves and beautiful views of the Cornish coast, it’s no wonder why so many people flock here for an unforgettable surf session.

Surfing at Treyarnon Bay is an experience like no other.

Whether you’re an experienced surfer or a beginner, there’s something here for everyone.

The waves here are consistent and powerful, perfect for both short and longboarders.

The bay also offers a variety of activities, such as beach volleyball and bodyboarding, to help you make the most of your time in the water.

With its stunning scenery and excellent waves, Treyarnon Bay is the perfect place to spend an afternoon catching some waves and soaking up the sun.


I had a great time exploring Padstow. From strolling along the harbour to taste-testing the delicious Cornish dishes in the seafood restaurants, the town offers a variety of experiences.

Whether you’re looking for a day of adventure or a relaxing afternoon, Padstow has something for everyone. Don’t forget to try the cream tea, a local specialty!

All in all, it was a wonderful trip that I won’t soon forget. There are so many things to do in Padstow that it’s hard to cover them all in one visit. I’m sure I’ll be back soon to explore more of this charming town.

About the author

Will is an avid hillwalker and traveler. You may find him surfing in Cornwall or hiking in the Yorkshire Dales.