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Yes we can hear you moan, "there are more than bloody 5 of them" and we agree with you, but in the interest of not making a huge bloated blog we decided to limit it to 5, plus we locals need a few secret ones for ourselves. Cornwall is famed for its beaches, inhospitable locals and exorbitant prices and as a local I can confirm that Cornwall prices are overly harsh (imagine being a local and paying high rates out of season) and until you get to know us we can be a bit rough around the edges but one thing holds true and that is our beaches are simply stunning and if you don't go to any of the main touristy beaches ( dont go to Newquay) you are in for what can only be described as a perfect beach day. so without further ado here are our top 5 Cornish beaches and remember if you are higher up than Newquay your a northerner lol
5. Porthcurno Beach
Home to the world famous Minack theatre and a varied past in communications during the war, Porthcurno even had its own mounted flame thrower on the beach in preparation of the German invasion. But lets not dwell in the past, the museums are interesting and the theatre is overpriced but beautiful to visit even if you don't like stage acting. What Porthcurno is really about is the beach, and what a beach it is and when the tide is out you can walk to green bay and on to Pedney past all the naked folks on the nudist beach ( don't worry if you have kids they are far away and wont be scarred for life). The sea is clear blue but does get deep quickly with shelf just past the waters edge so exercise caution with young ones. Pack a picnic and head down for a day of swimming and sunbathing and end with barbecue with all your mates as the sun goes down.
4. Sennen Cove
This beach is used by tourists far more than porthcurno as the accessibility is much easier but you will still see locals there in the height of summer and if the beach was only so-so that would not be the case, they would not brave the emits unless the beach had something special. Miles of golden sand stretch across the cove broken up only by a rocky outcropping that separates Gwenver ( Surf Beach) from the main Sennen beach. This beach has designated surfing, and swimming flags and lifeguards to watch over everyone plus a surf school or two so you can leave the kids to learn to surf while you sip cocktails at the Beach restaurant that overlooks the beach. One of my personal favourites as the facilities are good, the beach is stunning and big enough for everyone without feeling crowded and the foods also very good for a beach-side location, its only downside is exorbitant parking charges that are frankly overpriced. This is one for the whole family and we recommend if you are on holiday hiving it a go, you wont be sorry.
Although a bit of a trek down the stairs from the cliff car park, this beach ( mentioned above is a surfers Mecca and is busy with locals all year round. The cliff parking is approximately £3 for the day so very reasonable and is not council run thank god, although there are also no facilities either on the cliff or on the beach but you can take a walk over to Sennen on the coast path to get ice cream, food drinks and public loos. For family day out with plenty of sea action away from the crowds of tourists we recommend giving this beach a go, easy on the way down, its only a hassle when it comes time to leave, looks like daddy will be carrying everything back up the cliff.
2. Porthmeor Beach, St Ives
We nearly did not include this, but no collection of Cornish beaches would be complete without a St Ives listing, busy, touristy yet still very beautiful, no visit to Cornwall is complete without braving St Ives. Head down early, grab a spot and spend the day people watching, eating and swimming. You wont find many locals but then its pretty enough that you will put up with the hordes of tourists to experience a true quintessential Cornish seaside town and beach. Just watch out for the seagulls, they will steal your food right out of your hand and many crying children still clutching the ice cream less cone can be seen on any summer day. Lots of exorbitant parking options but sadly they fill up super quick so head to the town early to secure you day on the beach with as little hassle as possible.
1, Porth Chapel, St Levan
This is the best beach we can tell you about without revealing the true hidden gems that are locals only. This beach is found by going to porthcurno, heading through the village and up the hill past the Minack theatre and continuing to the church where you can park for very reasonable prices. head out the car park and towards the coast-path signs and follow to the beach, its a bit of a trek but you can be down the cliff and on the beach in about 10 minuets. Once on the beach there are no facilities, no shops nothing apart from stunning scenery, blue seas and nice sand to spend the day on. Go prepared and make a day of it with the whole family, you wont see anyone but locals and a few tourists who have been shown the light. Great swimming and the possibility of seeing basking sharks and dolphins if you are lucky. Why is this beach number one, go visit and you will see why.