Places to Visit

This part of north Cornwall offers a wide range of activities and interesting villages and fishing ports. Cornwall is a very dog friendly county, and if you are a dog owner you will be welcomed in many pubs, cafes and shops.


Along the local coast there are three easily accessible beaches.

  • Polzeath beach is 4 miles from the cottage and is a favourite for surfing, with equipment sales and hire and tuition available, and a large car parking area on the beach with an overflow on the cliffs to the south. There are several food and drink outlets.The beach has RNLI lifeguards from Easter to October (daily from early May to late September), and no dogs during the same period.
  • Daymer Bay a mile to the south of Polzeath is more sheltered and secluded as it is on the Camel estuary. There is no lifeguard service and dogs are allowed throughout the year. There is a car park and a food and drink outlet.
  • Rock beach is also on the Camel estuary, and consists of a long strip of sand along the river. There is a dog ban between Easter and October and no lifeguards. The car park at Rock quarry will have 70 extra spaces by Spring 2019. It fills up quickly in the summer as it is close to the Black Tor Ferry to Padstow.
  • Further afield there are many beaches 30 minutes to 1 hour away. To the north, Trebarwick Strand is stunning, and to the south, Lusty Glaze near Newquay is another gem.


All round the Cornish coast the coastal footpath is well signposted and there are some circular walks that include part of the coast path, such as Pentire Point, the headland north of Polzeath.


Fishing ports and villages pepper the coastline.

  • Padstow is a good place to visit, either via the ferry from Rock, or by bicycle along the Camel Trail from Wadebridge, where you can hire bikes and carriers for all ages. There is often an art exhibition in the Institute, there are plenty of food outlets, including several Rick Stein and Paul Ainsworth premises, and many shops offering retail therapy.
  • Rock is a sailing centre on the Camel estuary opposite Padstow. It is a long village with groups of shops dotted along Rock Road, including a high quality butcher, bakery, fishmonger, delicatessen and large village store. There is also an electrical store and hardware shop, a newsagent and petrol station. At the beach end of Rock Road are various cafes and bars, including the Mariners bar and restaurant run by Paul Ainsworth and Sharps Brewery.
  • Port Isaac, north of Polzeath, is an attractive historic fishing village made recently famous by Doc Martin and Nathan Outlaw.
  • Port Gaverne, to the north of Port Isaac, is a smaller historic port with a popular restaurant and café.
  • Port Quin to the south of Port Isaac is a tiny harbour accessible by road and the coastal path.
  • Wadebridge on the River Camel is 4 miles from Gardenia. This is an attractive and thriving town with a good range of shops and pubs, and several supermarkets, including Lidl, Aldi, Tesco and Coop. It is a hub on the Camel Trail and visitors can hire bikes here.


There are several art studios near Gardenia. The Wave 7 Gallery near Trelights and the Wendy Parkyn Gallery on the B3314 near Gardenia both offer workshops and tuition.


The nearest golf course is the popular and welcoming Point at Polzeath course, with lovely views, a bar and restaurant, tennis, pool and health club that visitors can join on a weekly basis.

Perhaps more famous courses are St Enodoc on the dunes at Rock, and Trevose, south of Padstow.


There are numerous village pubs within a short distance serving good food, try those at

  • Chapel Amble (The Malsters Arms)
  • The St Mabyn Inn
  • The St Kew Inn (Michelin Guide)
  • The St Tudy Inn (Michelin Guide)
  • The Cornish Arms on the coast road at Pendoggett


Further afield you are spoilt for choice for an interesting day trip. Here are just a few:

  • Boscastle (National Trust) and Tintagel (English Heritage) are a short journey to the north. Tintagel's new visitors' bridge will open in Spring 2019.
  • St Nectan's Glen is a beautiful waterfall walk south of Boscastle
  • Further south, The Tate at St Ives is a spectacular building
  • The Minnack Theatre is spectacularly perched on the cliff above Porthcurno near Land’s End
  • The Eden Project near St Austell is dramatically built in an old china clay pit and will entertain the whole family
  • Lanhydrock House and garden is a National Trust gem south of Bodmin
  • The Bodmin and Wenford steam railway is an exciting outing
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