Best family friendly beaches in North Cornwall

We have asked our staff for their favourite family friendly beaches close to Sands Resort

Are you counting the days to your family holiday in Cornwall? If you’ve already started planning your stay you might have come across a very difficult question: Which one of the more than 200 beaches in Cornwall should you be visiting with your children?

Our Tip: Ask the locals. We’ve asked our staff for their top 10 family friendly beaches in the North of Cornwall and here is what they said.

Porth Beach
5 min walk from Sands

Only a short walk from Sands Resort Hotel, Porth Beach is ideal for families, very wide with lots of room to build the biggest and best sandcastles or to explore the many rock pools. Porth beach is regarded as one of the safest beaches for swimming in the Newquay area. There is no surfing allowed during the Summer season.

Lifeguards May – September? Yes
Car Park? Yes
Toilets? Yes
Shop? Yes
Café? Yes
Dogs allowed? No, not between Easter to October.

Family friendly beach Cornwall

Porth Beach, Cornwall

Watergate Bay
(5 min drive from Sands)

Watergate Bay is a stunning 1.5 miles long beach and only 15 – 20 min walk from Sands. The walk leads you along the coastal path which enjoys incredible views. Watergate Bay is a large open bay at the bottom of the cliffs and is very popular with surfers.

There is also a surf school that offers courses for children 6+ and lots of rock pools and caves to explore, with great sand for building castles. The beach hut and Jamie Oliver’s famous 15 restaurant ensure that you aren’t left hungry. There is also a small kiosk which sells drinks, sandwiches and ice cream. The Beach hosts many events throughout the year including many big surfing competitions and the famous Veuve Clicquot Polo on the Beach.

Lifeguards May – September? Yes
Car Park? Yes
Toilets? Yes
Shop? Yes
Café? Yes
Dogs allowed? Yes

Family friendly beach cornwall

Watergate Bay, Cornwall

Mawgan Porth Beach
(13 min drive from Sands)

Mawgan Porth is a large, sandy beach and great for families. At low tide you can explore small caves and a river runs through the southern side of the beach on its way to the sea. Watersports equipment may be hired from the surf school.
There are lots of little restaurants and cafes and one of our favourite shops, Disco Beads is also based there. Have a look at their funky jewellery!

Lifeguards May – September? Yes
Car Park? Yes
Toilets? Yes
Shop? Yes
Café? Yes
Dogs allowed? Yes

Porthcothan Beach
(20 min drive from Sands)

Porthcothan Bay Beach is a sandy, beach in a narrow, sheltered cove between Newquay and Padstow and again, is very popular with families. At low tide the beach extends out of the cove into the Atlantic, and connects to smaller beaches in picturesque coves up and down the coast. The rear of the beach is backed by dunes.

Lifeguards May – September? Yes
Car Park? Yes
Toilets? Yes
Shop? Yes
Café? Yes
Dogs allowed? Yes

Treyarnan Beach
(24 min drive from Sands)

Treyarnon Bay Beach is a sandy beach in a shallow, narrow cove near Padstow. The rear of the beach is backed by sand dunes. As it enters the Atlantic, at either side of the beach are rocky areas with rock pools to explore at low tides.

Treyarnon Bay is a fantastic spot for families and often provides good surfing conditions. There are excellent coastal views from the South West Coast Path, along which walkers can access several other beaches nearby.

Lifeguards May – September? Yes
Car Park? Yes
Toilets? Yes
Shop? Yes
Café? Yes
Dogs allowed? Yes

Constantine Bay – Padstow
(26 min drive from Sands)

A beautiful, deep, long, sandy beach with a rocky reef for snorkelling and good waves for experienced surfers. There is very little parking by the beach, and most visitors park near Treyarnon and walk the ten minutes across. This walking route does get congested during summer though.

Lifeguards May – September? Yes
Car Park? Yes but very limited space (park in Treyarnon instead)
Toilets? Yes
Shop? Yes
Café? No
Dogs allowed? Yes

Family friendly beach constantine bay

Constantine Bay

Harlyn Beach
(28 min drive from Sands)

Harlyn Bay Beach lies in a sheltered location to the east of Trevose Head, near Padstow.  The sand and pebble beach backed by sand dunes stretches around a half a mile.

Conditions in the bay are often ideal for surfing and consequently the beach is ideal for both surfers and families. Surf boards may be hired at the beach. The beach can be accessed from various points. From here you can also walk to Trevone Beach.

Sands’ Tip: Try the burgers at the ‘Food for Thought’ van – delicious!

Lifeguards May – September? Yes
Car Park? Yes
Toilets? Yes
Shop? Yes
Café? Yes
Dogs allowed? Yes

Trevone
(30 min drive from Sands)

The village of Trevone has two beaches, a sandy beach which is ideal for lazy days by the sea. The sand is fine and golden, great for building sandcastles.

For the more energetic amongst you, there is the rocky beach which boasts its own natural swimming pool and is ideal for youngsters of any age to go crabbing in the rock pools or collecting shells at low tide. The sandy beach is quite sheltered and ideal for families.

Just above the sandy beach is a giant natural blow hole, which is at least 80ft deep and is a great tourist attraction. 

Lifeguards May – September? Yes
Car Park? Yes
Toilets? Yes
Shop? Yes (in the village)
Café? Yes (in the village)
Dogs allowed? No, not from Easter to October

Polzeath Beach
(41 min drive from Sands)

Polzeath is one of the most popular surfing beaches in Cornwall, often providing ideal Atlantic conditions. The large expanses of golden sands also make it a popular destination for families. Polzeath is a 2011 Blue Flag beach.

There are splendid walks to be taken in the area. Walkers along the South West Coast Path will enjoy fine coastal views. To the south, the coast path leads to Daymer Bay Beach. Dolphins are often seen in the waters off the beach, and the coastline is also visited by birdlife such as peregrine falcons.

You can also hire equipment for Watersports here.

Lifeguards May – September? Yes
Car Park? Yes
Toilets? Yes
Shop? Yes
Café? Yes
Dogs allowed? No, not from Easter to October

Daymer Bay
(43 min drive from Sands)

Daymer Bay Beach is a long, sheltered, sandy beach with sand dunes, boasting fine views across the estuary and the ‘Doom Bar’.

The ‘Doom Bar’, a sand bank at the mouth of the Camel estuary, has presented a hazard to sailors for centuries and protects the estuary from the forces of the Atlantic. At low tide the sands of Daymer Bay stretch as far as Rock, from where a foot ferry service to Padstow is available in peak seasons.

Polzeath Beach lies around a mile to the north of Daymer Bay. St Enodoc Golf Course overlooks the south end of the beach, and St Enodoc Church is nearby, where John Betjeman is buried.

The waters are relatively safe for bathing and conditions are often conducive to good wind surfing.

Lifeguards May – September? Yes
Car Park? Yes
Toilets? Yes
Shop? Yes
Café? Yes
Dogs allowed? Yes

If you know of any family friendly beaches in Cornwall that are not on our list, please add them in the comment box below! See you soon in Cornwall.

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