According to a recent survey we conducted here at The Tourist Trail, Cornwall is the UK’s favourite staycation destination. And it’s not hard to see why. Sitting on the south west tip of England, Cornwall is the county with the longest coastline in Britain, boasting over 400 miles of glorious coastline. If you enjoy surfing, you’ll be pleased to know that Cornwall is the UK’s surf capital, attracting four million visitors each year to its countless beaches and sparkling blue waters. The county also benefits from a much milder climate than the rest of the UK, so you’re guaranteed good weather!
But Cornwall is a lot more than just beaches. The Cornish countryside is abundant with rolling green pastures and vast moorland. Explore the outdoors in your favourite way, whether it’s cycling, walking, climbing or horse riding. You’ll also find charming seaside villages and towns, world-class galleries, a fantastic food and drink scene, and unique attractions. So whatever you’re interested in, you’re bound to have a good time in Cornwall. Let’s take a further look at why a staycation in Cornwall should be on your list of things to do.
Types of accommodation
There is an abundance of accommodation in Cornwall. Whatever type of staycation you’re after, the perfect accommodation awaits.
A great way to make the most of the outdoors is to go camping. As you can imagine, Cornwall is brimming with campsites. You’ll find everything from back to basics campsites, to holiday parks with cafes, games rooms and pools. There are even working farms which have campsites, so you can even buy your own fresh produce and meet the animals.
Prefer a little more luxury? Glamping is a fantastic option. You’ll be able to enjoy the natural surroundings with much more comfort than traditional camping. Cornwall has a whole range of unique glamping sites, whether it’s eco friendly yurts or cosy wooden cabins.
If you’re looking for some warm Cornish hospitality, there are numerous B&Bs and inns which offer a much more personal experience than hotels. It’s a great way to sample traditional Cornish fare which is definitely a must-have experience!
If you’re planning on spending quite some time in Cornwall, perhaps a holiday home or cottage is your best bet. They’re usually much better value than hotels, and have a more personal touch. Holiday cottages also have all the conveniences you find at home, so they’re great for families. Cornwall has plenty of holiday homes and cottages, many of which are located in natural beauty spots.
Cornwall is full of interesting attractions, so you won’t have a chance to be bored! One of the top attractions is Eden Project. This educational charity and attraction has two biomes, the Rainforest Biome and the Mediterranean Biome. Inside the biomes are a huge collection of plants from different climates and environments around the world. Outside you’ll find the 30 acre Outdoor Garden which is filled with potent plants like sunflowers and hemp. It’s a fantastic place to learn about the relationship between people and plants, and how to live sustainably.
Looking for something unique to do? The Cornish Seal Sanctuary is a fun day out where you can visit seals, otters and penguins that have been rescued from the Cornish coastline. You’ll get to see the food preparation area, and get behind the scenes at the hospital pup pen. Based on a 40 acre site of special scientific interest, the sanctuary also has a woodland quiz trail, cafe and two gift shops.
If you’re a fan of gardens, then you’ll be spoilt for choice in Cornwall. The temperate climate means that it’s home to some of Britain’s most spectacular gardens. One of the most popular is the Lost Gardens of Heligan near Mevagissey. First created in the mid 18th century, the gardens surround Heligan House, and are divided into many themed areas. Keep an eye out for romantic structures and quaint little features.
Trebah is another must-see. This unique garden is a sub-tropical paradise which descends 200 feet through a valley and leads onto a private beach. There are four miles of footpaths within the garden, winding through colourful blooms and exotic species. It’s a beautiful spot to get lost.
There are also many gardens which lie in the grounds of Cornwall’s magnificent castles. Tintagel Castle is set high on an island on Cornwall’s stunning north coast. Cross a footbridge and explore the remains of a 13th century castle and of early medieval settlements built between the 5th and 7th centuries. End your visit at the beach below the castle, a lesser-known spot with rock pools and a waterfall falling from the cliffs above.
Another stunning castle is Pendennis Castle, an artillery fort constructed by Henry VIII. With panoramic views out to sea, the castle has plenty of exciting activities to get stuck into. Learn about the role that the castle played during the First World War, get up close and personal with Napoleonic guns, discover an underground ammunition storage used in the Second World War, and find out how enemy ships were spotted from the Battery Observation Post.
Places of interest
As well as interesting attractions, Cornwall also has some beautiful places and areas to visit. St Michael’s Mount is one of Cornwall’s most iconic views. This tidal island in Mount’s Bay is crowned by a medieval church and castle. It’s a great little day day trip for some pretty dramatic views.
Another place of interest is Lands End. This landmark on the westernmost point of Cornwall has inspired people since ancient Greek times when it was known as ‘Belerion’ – place of the sun. You’ll find cliff-top trails, family attractions, a shopping village and plenty of eateries.
Bodmin Moor is a granite moorland and the largest section of the Cornwall AONB. This expanse of grassland heather is made for exploring, with granite outcrops, high granite tors, prehistoric settlements, hut circles and standing stones. It’s also home to a wealth of plants and protected wildlife, so is a great spot for wildlife spotting.