We’re massive fans of a picnic here, particularly when we find somewhere quiet, slightly off the beaten track.
When it comes to finding picnic spots with amazing views in Cornwall, we’re spoilt for choice. I could simply tell you to pick a beach without mentioning anywhere else.
But that’s not what this blog on picnic spots in Cornwall is all about…
I want to share with you a selection of Cornwall’s finest places for a picnic, some of which are less obvious than others. They’re places that allow you to appreciate Cornwall’s wild beauty and be at one with Mother Nature.
Many of the picnic spots featured here involve a walk. Believe me, it’s worth it. You’ll be away from the crowds and feel like you’ve found a place that others haven’t stumbled upon or thought about.
This post on picnic spots in Cornwall is in collaboration with Unique Hideaways. Therefore, I’ve personally selected some glamping accommodation near each picnic spot, so you can stay that bit longer. Unique Hideaways specialise in more remote places to stay, promoting the benefits of switching off and being in nature. They’re big advocates of appreciating the natural world and spending time outside. They’d be the first to tell you to pack up your basket or rucksack, and find a beautiful picnic spot in Cornwall.
With 12 of the best picnic spots in Cornwall here for you to discover, all you have to do is make your Cornish pasty, pack up your favourite beverage, perhaps some elderflower cordial and head off in search of a beautiful Cornish view.
1. Above Caerhays and Porthluney Beach
Caerhays is mostly known for its castle and gardens. There’s also a lovely cove here too, Porthluney (or as I call it, Caerhays Beach).
To find this lovely Cornish picnic spot, park at Porthluney beach. Walk up the hill and head onto the south west coast path. On the other side of the first field you’ll find a brick hut with window seating. It’s absolutely perfect for a sheltered picnic, overlooking the sea. A great spot for when the weather isn’t on your side.
If you want to see the actual view from this lookout, check out my Instagram reel.
Want to stay near this picnic spot in Cornwall? If so, check out Roseland Valley Retreat, just 4 miles away. This spacious timber cabin has all the comforts of home and is located in its own meadow. Not only that, but there’s also a safari tent you can make good use too. You could have a night or 2, sleeping under the stars.
If you’d like to explore the local area some more, I’ve a fab walking or running route for you. This route from Caerhays goes in the other direction, to Hemmick beach (which is one of my favourites!).
I recently completed a 10k run from Helford towards St Anthony in Meneage. It was wonderful, covering coast and woodland. On the way round, along the coast path from Helford, you’ll find some discrete little beaches. They’re perfect for a picnic and a post lunch laze in the sun. You can watch the boats and SUP boarders come and go while feeling like you’d found your own slice of heaven. Why not fire up your camping stove and heat your food while you have a little dip in the sea?
When it comes to a glamping getaway near Helford, Unique Hideaways have Little Jenny Wren. It’s cosy and looks perfect whatever time of year you plan to visit. After a day exploring in Cornwall, return to your little home, light the burner and relax with a glass of wine. Sit back and listen to sounds of nature before heading off to bed.
3. Bassetts Cove
Every time I run on the south west coast path, past Bassetts Cove, it takes my breath away. If you’re not familiar with Bassetts Cove, it’s a few miles west of Portreath on the coast path. I love this whole coastline to Godrevy and beyond.
There’s a small car park at Bassetts Cove which overlooks this fantastic picnic spot on the Cornish coast. You can walk from Portreath (it starts with a bit of a climb) or simply park up, and lay your blanket nearby on the grassy bank. If you’d rather a bench, continue walking west and you’ll find some dotted along the coast path. The scenery here is wonderful. Huge, steep imposing cliffs make you feel like you’re looking down on another world.
Unique Hideaways have a lovely shepherd’s hut, Hannah’s Haven, just outside Portreath. It’s the perfect location for discovering west Cornwall, and you’re not far from the coast. With light, bright decor, this intimate hut is in the most idyllic setting. Surrounded by rich green Cornish countryside, Hannah’s Haven has an outside seating area just begging to be used for some al fresco dining.
If you’re staying in the area, I’d recommend hiring some bikes and cycling the nearby Bissoe Trail.
4. The Rumps, near Polzeath
I love The Rumps; the name alone always makes me chuckle! It’s a fabulous picnic spot on the north Cornish coast. The Rumps have a totally remote and cut off feel. In fact, when I visit, Game of Thrones always comes to mind.
The Rumps are actually an old iron age hill fort, believed to be inhabited in the 4th Century. It’s hard to believe anyone lived here at all. Accessing The Rumps involves a short walk from Polzeath or New Polzeath but that’s what makes it that little bit more special. To get the best view, walk over The Rumps so you’re facing the sea for your leisurely picnic. In my view, it’s a great picnic spot to while the time away, sipping hot coffee from your flask and devouring picnic favourites, like scotch eggs and pork pies.
Alternatively, if you don’t fancy a walk, or just want to stay near to Polzeath, there’s some lovely flat grassy areas overlooking the beach. Lay your blanket here, kick your shoes off and laze the afternoon away while you listen to the waves lapping the rocks below.
To make the most of this area and other places of interest, like Padstow, you can stay in Tregwelan Shepherd’s Hut. Boasting amazing views of the Camel Estuary as it eases out to the Atlantic Ocean, Tregwelan caters for your every need with comfort in mind. Tregwelan looks perfect for a romantic getaway, allowing you to unplug and switch off.
If you’re specifically looking for a quiet place to stay with a sea view, Unique Hideaways have an impressive collection.
If you’ve never been to Sennen, it’s worth going for the beach alone, Whitesands Bay. With soft pale sand and an impressive vista of Cape Cornwall in the distance, Sennen is a sleepy quiet fishing village that has its own relaxed pace. If you’re wanting a busy day out, you won’t find it here. For me, this makes Sennen all the more special.
When it comes to picnic spots, obviously you can sit on the beach or head to Sennen Cove. My preference though is to walk through the village and take the coast path beyond the Lifeboat station. At the top of the climb, you’ll find the Old Coastguard Lookout. It’s a clean historic building with a few seats overlooking the sea. It’s a safe place to sit but it definitely has that on-the-edge-of-the-world feel about it! To the left of this picnic spot is Land’s End, only a short coastal walk away.
Not far from Sennen, in St Levan, is the brilliantly named The Pigsty, a delightful and contemporary renovated barn perfectly positioned for exploring west Cornwall (and other picnic spots in the area!). Relaxed yet refined, this open plan cottage will have you wishing you booked longer.
6. Kynance Cove
Kynance Cove is up there as one of the most beautiful places in Cornwall. Managed and maintained by the National Trust, it’s definitely stunning and worth a visit. Rock formations jut out from the mainland and the jewel coloured sea is inviting and hard to resist. When it comes to picnic spots in Cornwall, I can’t deny, the cove is popular. At peak season, it’s busy here.
Please don’t let that deter you from experiencing Kynance Cove for yourself. If I were to stop here for a picnic, I wouldn’t necessarily head down onto the beach (I know, shocker, right?). Instead take the path from the car park and walk around the coastline and perch on the cliff top, near The Bellows. To get to the same picnic location, you can walk across Kynance Cove at low tide and take the steps opposite Kynance Cove Cafe. This will take you straight to the place I’m raving about!
This view is amazing! It offers an alternative aspect of Kynance Cove and you’re able to see beyond the islands and rocks that encase the bay. It should take you away from the crowds too. A bit like having your own private picnic experience.
To stay near Kynance Cove, Unique Hideaways have a special offering, Gull Rock Cabin. Complete with a veranda, you can soak up the gentle movement of the sea while sipping your morning brew. Set in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, it’s a good location for other areas too, such as Mullion.
7. Rinsey Head
This pretty patch on the south west coast path offers a few options for picnic enthusiasts. You can fire up your camping stove next to Wheal Prosper or walk a short distance to Trewavas Head. If the tide is low, you can have your picnic on the rocks. There’s a pretty cove at Rinsey too, Porthcew, so you could have a post picnic dip!
You can find more about Rinsey Head and local walks in this blog post.
If you’d like to stay in the area, I’d recommend Barney’s Cabin, just a few miles from delightful Porthleven. Complete with a hot tub that’s begging to be used after a day roaming on the south west coast path, Barney’s Cabin is situated on the edge of woodland, offering enchantment and seclusion. Tastefully decorated, Barney’s Cabin looks like a dream to stay in.
Unique Hideaways have many cabins, huts and glamping tents with their own hot tubs. You can find their guide here.
8. Wheal Coates
Wheal Coates isn’t exactly the most secret picnic spot in Cornwall, but it seems right to include it here.
You can find the engine house, Wheal Coates on the north Cornish coast, between Chapel Porth and St Agnes. It’s a well known sight, one that is synonymous with Cornwall and its tin mining heritage. As expected, the views are outstanding. For your coastal picnic, meander along this well trodden path to find a spot along this rugged coastline. Then tuck into your well earned food.
National Trust Trelissick is a wonderful place to visit. With sheltered walks along the RIver Fal around North Wood, and Trelissick House to meander around, it’s a good day out for all the family. There’s some quiet picnic spots here too. Lay your blanket on the grassy knoll that leads from the car park or head to the little shingle beach for your water fix. Alternatively, walk beside the River Fal to Lamouth Creek where you’ll find fire pits. It’s good for swimming here at high tide too.
Not far from Trelissick, towards Falmouth, is Pippin, a shepherd’s hut with a sea view. With restful views of Restronguet Creek, you’ll find it hard to leave the comfort offered here. Offering a healthy dose of coast and countryside, a getaway in Pippin ensures your batteries will be recharged. Choose whether you stay close to home or embark on daily adventures in the great Cornish outdoors.
10. Lamorna Cove
Head down to the Lizard Heritage Coast and walk from Mousehole to Lamorna Cove. You won’t be disappointed! Near Lamorna Cove are some accessible rocky outlets (probably best at low tide), ideal picnic spots if you’re wanting an intimate and secluded position. This beautiful spot is visible from the coast path making it easy to spot. On my run, I saw people taking advantage of this position and made a mental note. It made me wish I had time, and some food, to do the same!
As you’re nestled into the rocks, on a good day it’ll be sheltered. Here you can appreciate the uniqueness of the Lizard Peninsula. Large rounded golden rocks and a remoteness that seems to be found the further west you venture in Cornwall.
Glamping near Lamorna Cove doesn’t get better than Unique Hideaway’s Safari Tent, Foxglove. With a hot tub, BBQ and an honesty shop on site, all you have to do is kick back in the hammock, doze, and enjoy the view.
11. Marazion Beach
I’ve some special memories of picnicking on Marazion Beach. With St Michael’s Mount in view, it’s a wonderful picnic spot in Cornwall. It’s a good position to watch the sunset on a summer evening across Mounts Bay. On a clear day or evening, you can see Penzance and Newlyn in the distance. Just magic.
You can find a home from home at Mount View Retreat, a short drive from Marazion. This striking blue shepherd’s hut has a priceless view of St Michael’s Mount. There’s a safe space for children to play behind the hut too, with a climbing frame and trampoline. With comfortable interiors giving a subtle nod to countryside living, you can rest well here after a day roaming around west Cornwall. After a relaxing soak in the hot tub, of course.
A sweet, quiet cove where you can also get your Daphne Du Maurier fix. Hello, Polridmouth Beach (or as locals call it, Pridmouth). This one is off the beaten path, between Polkerris and Fowey. It’s a lovely beach all year round and from here you can walk to Gribbin Head , or in the other direction, to lovely Fowey.
If you’d like to glamp in style here, head to The Little Cider House, in neighbouring Lostwithiel. This cabin sleeps 5, making it perfect for a family getaway. There’s oodles of discoveries nearby for little, curious minds, such as woodland tracks with local wildlife and a brook. There’s also a hammock, hot tub and fire pit, I’m not sure you need anything else! Oh ok, may be a good book and a glass of vino.
Want to head out? You may find this book lover’s guide to Cornwall help you decide where to go.