Best walks & nature attractions in Newquay

Best walks & nature attractions in Newquay

Best walks & nature attractions in Newquay

Date Posted: 7 Jun 2023

Because you’re spoilt for choice with beaches in Newquay, it’s quite easy to spend a few hours just walking between them all. And they’re quite stretched out, for example from Fistral Beach to Watergate Bay it’s a five mile walk along the coast path. You don’t have to walk that far though, walks in the centre of Newquay are less taxing because the town beaches are much closer together, you could walk from Newquay Harbour to Tolcarne Beach in about 20 minutes.

Newquay walks

Porth Beach, Newquay

Newquay to Watergate Bay

One of the most popular coastal walks in Newquay is the jaunt to Watergate Bay.
It’s a 3.5 mile walk along the coastal path, taking just over an hour. The cliffs are bejewelled by summer thrift, with spectacular views and on a sunny day, the rather photogenic sea is transformed into a deep azure. The route takes you past Tolcarne, Lusty Glaze, Porth beach, Porth Island and Whipsderry, before reaching stunning Watergate Bay. At low tide, you can choose to walk stretches of this walk along the beaches below the town.

Newquay to Crantock

This circular walk takes you from Newquay to Crantock via Towan Head and Pentire Point so the views are plentiful. The walk starts from the town centre next to the train station, where you can pick up the South West Coast Path and follow the waymarked trail up to Towan Head. You’ll head south along the surfing hotspot Fistral Beach, before reaching Pentire. Follow the footpath around the headland at Pentire Point where there are nice views looking down to Crantock Beach.

After passing Pentire Point, there are a few options. At low tide (around 3 hours either side of low water), a foot bridge will allow you to walk across the river free of charge. Failing that, during the summer months you can catch the Fernpit Ferry over the River Gannel to the Crantock side. On the other side follow the path along the Rushy Green before heading into Crantock village, where there’s a pub and a few cafes. If you continue along the right-hand side of the estuary for approximately 800 metres until you see the small wooden Penpol footbridge, you’ll be able to cross at low tide to get back to Newquay.

Crantock to Polly Joke Beach

Once you’re in Crantock it’s worth walking west on to Polly Joke Beach (also known as Porth Joke beach), which is around 2 miles via the coast path. Somewhat off the beaten track, it is a beautiful little sandy cove set away from the main activity of Newquay. In spring, the beach is overlooked by dramatic huge fields of red poppies which has to be seen to be believed.

Newquay Nature Attractions

Trenance Gardens

Trenance Gardens is an oasis of manicured gardens, so it’s no surprise it’s won many awards. An Edwardian public garden in the heart of Newquay, spot flora and fauna as you meander through this pretty park. Within the 23 acres of Trenance Park is Newquay Zoo, the only zoo in Cornwall, plus a leisure centre, restaurants, pitch and putt, crazy golf, playground areas, a bowling green, and many more family leisure activities.

If you’re looking for wildlife in Newquay, the boating lake has proved a major attraction for local bird life, and species such as moorhens, coots, cormorants, and swans are regularly seen.

The Japanese Garden

You’ll be surrounded by nature at The Japanese Garden near St Mawgan. Less than six miles from the buzz of Newquay, this tranquil haven offers some peaceful beauty. Visit the bonsai, pagodas and ponds full of koi fish, strolling around the garden is a wonderful way to relax on your holiday in Newquay.

Screech Owl Sanctuary & Animal Park

Ten miles outside of Newquay, in St Columb Major, is Screech Owl Sanctuary, which is open daily from April through to October. Throughout the day there’s flying displays, chance to feed the animals and talks about wildlife, racoons and lemurs, and of course… owls.

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