14 of the Best Attractions in Cornwall

July 26th, 2021

With its stunning countryside and unspoilt coastline, it’s no wonder that Cornwall is one of the top holiday destinations in the UK.

A luxury family holiday in Cornwall wouldn’t be complete without plenty of things to do. That’s why we’ve compiled this list of the best attractions that Cornwall has to offer.

From beaches to museums to ancient ruins – there’s something for everyone, no matter the weather!

Outdoor Attractions in Cornwall

Cornwall has a whole host of outdoor attractions that give you the opportunity to enjoy the stunning scenery as well as making memories you’ll never forget.

Two boys on the zip wire at Adrenalin Quarry

H3: 1. Adrenalin Quarry, Liskeard

There’s nowhere better to get your thrills in Cornwall than the Adrenalin Quarry.

This rural quarry site in Liskeard has been proudly throwing people off of cliffs since 2009, and they’re not about to stop now!

With zip wires, giant clifftop swings, go-karts, axe throwing and an aquapark, this attraction is a must-stop for anyone looking to get their blood pumping.

2. Lanhydrock House and Garden, Bodmin

For those who’d prefer a more serene day out, then Lanhydrock House and Garden in Bodmin are perfect.

This magnificent late Victorian country house has astounding gardens that are in colour all year round. Take a stroll through the formal parterre before you branch off to explore the ancient woodlands and riverside paths, all of which are a part of this grand estate.

They even offer bike hire for those wanting to take to the off-road cycle paths.

A lion at Newquay Zoo

3. Newquay Zoo, Newquay

Set your own pace as you roam through 13 acres worth of land and explore over 1,000 of the world’s rarest and endangered animals at Newquay Zoo.

With activity trails, two children’s play areas and the Dragon Maze onsite, as well as food services, there’s something for everyone on a day out to Newquay zoo.

The best outdoor attractions in Cornwall

Indoor Activities in Cornwall

Just because the weather is glum, it doesn’t mean you have to be. Here are some fantastic attractions in Cornwall that are indoors.

A child walking through the outdoor garden at the Eden Project

4. Eden Project, St Austell

We will never not have something good to say about the Eden Project. This amazing attraction is a must for anyone visiting Cornwall, be it rain or shine!

Nestled away in a crater, the Eden Project is an educational charity that offers visitors the chance to connect to the living world with stunning plants and its own rainforest climate.

5. Healeys Cornish Cyder Farm, Truro

Next time you’re on holiday in Cornwall, why not stop by Healeys Cornish Cyder Farm and see how the South of England’s staple drink is made.

Healeys is a great stop for grown-ups with guided tours and onsite tastings, while the educational tours and farm petting zoo make a great day out for the kids.

A yellow tropical fish in an aquarium

6. Blue Reef Aquarium, Newquay

Lose yourself in the wonders of the deep blue sea with a visit to the Blue Reef Aquarium in Newquay.

With over 40 natural habitats ranging from the Cornish coast all the way to the open ocean, this attraction is a must-stop wonder for anyone visiting Cornwall.

The best indoor attractions in Cornwall

Beaches in Cornwall

With over 300 miles of coastline, Cornwall is home to some stunning beaches. Here, we’ve listed a couple of our favourites.

7. Porthminster Beach, St Ives

This stunning crescent-shaped beach looks out towards Godrevy Lighthouse, which is famously the inspiration for Virginia Woolf’s novel ‘To the Lighthouse’.

Porthminster beach is safe for swimming and just a short walk from the centre of St Ives, making it a family favourite!

Fistral Beach on a clear day

8. Fistral Beach, Newquay

Know for being one of the top surf spots in the UK, Fistral Beach is the perfect place to visit if you’re looking to catch some waves.

This beach is the perfect place to visit for timid beginners looking to take to the water for the first time or pros just looking to show off!

Check out our blog for more fantastic, family-friendly beaches in Cornwall.

Best Cornish beaches for families to visit

Historic Sites in Cornwall

Satisfy the historian within you by spending the day exploring one of these great historical sites in Cornwall.

Pendennis Castle on a cloudy day

9. Pendennis Castle, Falmouth

Overlooking the town of Falmouth, you’ll find one of Henry VIII’s finest seaside castles, Pendennis.

With winding stone staircases, gun rooms and authentic turrets, this castle makes a perfect family day out as you step back into the 16th century. You can also spot a whole range of local sea and wildlife while soaking up the 360-degree views of Falmouth.

the passage at Halliggye Fogou in Helston

10. Halliggye Fogou, Helston,

If you’re a fan of ancient history, then a visit to Halliggye Fogou in Helston is a must!

This series of complex passages are thought to date back to the 5th or 4th century BC and was likely once part of a small farming settlement.

Cultural Attractions in Cornwall

These attractions are a must-visit for anyone who’s drawn to the wonders of art and theatre.

The empty Minack Theatre on a clear day

11. The Minack Theatre, Porthcurno

The Minack Theatre is a unique open-air theatre built in 1929 by Rowena Cade after she offered her land for a production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

From Easter to September, the Minack is a fully working theatre with approximately 20 plays produced by companies worldwide. The theatre is open to visitors for the rest of the year and can even be hired out for events.

Sculptures by Barbara Hepworth at the Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden

12. Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden, St Ives

After the war, Dame Jocelyn Barbara Hepworth, an English artist and sculptor, came to live in Cornwall, where she continued her work in Trewyn Studios. After her death in 1975, the studios became the Barbara Hepworth Museum.

With over 30 works in wood, stone, plaster and bronze, the museum and garden give visitors an amazing insight into one of the leading figures in British modern art.

Natural Attractions in Cornwall

Cornwall is well known for its fabulous beaches and beautiful countryside, but were you aware of these other natural attractions?

One of the waterfalls at St Nectans Glen

13. St Nectan’s Glen, Trethevy

When you enter the sacred site of St Nectan’s Glen, it’s like stepping right into a fairytale.

Over time, the river Trevillet has carved its way through the Late Devonian Slate to create an astounding 60-foot waterfall right out of a Tolkien novel.

With beautiful walks and two more waterfalls, this natural beauty is a must for anyone who likes to add a little bit of magic to their holidays.

14. Bude Sea Pool, Bude

Technically, this attraction is only half natural, but we still think it deserved some recognition.

The Bude sea pool was built in the 1930s as a means for people to bathe in seawater safely without the harsh Atlantic currents. 80 years on, this tidal swimming pool is still a major hit with locals and visitors alike and is free to enjoy all year round.

We hope our guide helps make sure you never have a dull moment while enjoying your holiday in Cornwall.

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Image credit: Visit Cornwall