On a stormy day, huge waves can batter the harbour (an amazing sight from the distance). In the 1820s, Portreath was Cornwall’s busiest port, served by a tramroad. However, the hazardous harbour was difficult for ships to navigate (try to imagine it on a high-swell day) so its commercial viability as a port was limited. Now it is a beautiful village for visitors to enjoy, and the tramroads are used for leisure purposes.
If you seek a friendly vibe, a fabulous beach and a fun family holiday resort, then the hidden gem village of Portreath may be just what you need. It is quieter than many resorts, but still with all the facilities you expect.
If travelling by car, take the A30 from the M5, then head off on the A39 towards Truro and Redruth. At Redruth, from the A30 turnoff at the intersection, take the B3300, then after 2 miles, turn left on the B3301 to Portreath. It is around 12 miles from Truro.
If you’re driving to North Cornwall in a plug-in electric vehicle, see our list of charging locations here.
Portreath is not too far from Newquay Airport, so that is another option. A bus from Newquay Aerohub (the number 47) takes you to Portreath but it is a circuitous journey.
By public transport, the number 47 bus also goes to Portreath from Truro, but really, unless you are an avid walker, you need a car around here.
Portreath car park is on the seafront, right by the beach. There is a short set of steps to the beach, unsuitable for wheelchairs (access is level from the road). You may be lucky and find some on-street parking depending on the time of year.
The Waterfront Inn is hidden on a secret beach adjacent to the historic harbour. Inside, lies a dark secret; folklore has it that it was built on the site of an older building which was used as a temporary morgue when bodies washed up from shipwrecks.
Both the Bassett Arms and Portreath Arms Hotel are reputedly haunted – don’t worry though, the spirits are thought to be friendly.
Meanwhile, to lighten the mood, Olde Penny’s Tea Room is is a part of the Vintage home and Fashion experience. A friendly tea room which offers freshly baked cakes, cream teas and more!
With a pretty sandy beach and small harbour, a self-catering holiday in Portreath is the perfect way to escape the rat race.