Who needs to holiday abroad when we have so many amazing counties and cities on our beautiful British island? This summer has been perfect for the staycation with all the amazing weather we’ve been having, and with us moving house, buying a new car and my husband having a slight obsession with buying bike parts, it’s not been possible to fund a holiday abroad. I’ve been doing loads of research recently on places down south which would be the perfect destination to holiday in with kids when I realised we’d never, ever been to Cornwall. Is it just me or is there something totally idyllic about the thought of a cornish cottage in the middle of the countryside with the coast either side of you, tearooms serving clotted cream and scones everywhere you turn and surfers rocking up the A30 towards Newquay in their campervans? Cornwall is the perfect county for families, young couples and friends looking for adventure.
I asked my followers and fellow bloggers where their favourite places to visit in Cornwall with kids were, and the response I got was overwhelming. Here are my top ten picks and let me tell you, I cannot wait to get down south to check them all out.
Lost Gardens of Heligan
These restored botanical gardens just outside of St. Austell are the perfect day out for adults and kids alike. For older children there is a jungle area with a rope bridge and for the younger ones they can enjoy the farm area, insect hotels and play spaces. With over 200 acres of green space, it’s the perfect place to get back to nature. Open all year round with an adult ticket starting at £14.50, children at £6.50 and under fives go free.
A great day out for the whole family, the world famous Eden Project is the largest indoor rainforest in the world and is home to over 1,000 varieties of plants. It may be freezing outside, but the temperature within the biome stays between 18 and 35 degrees as you trapise along the canopy walkway admiring waterfalls, bananas high up in the trees and swirling clouds which show you how rainforests reflect sunlight and cool the planet. A truly stunning project which helps our kids to understand how we as humans impact the Earth and well worth a visit whenever you are near to Cornwall. Adult ticket prices start at £25, with children costing £12.50 and under fives entering for free.
Lappa Valley Railway
Dexter is obsessed with choo choos at the moment and we love taking him to steam railways where he can ride the trains safely. Lappa Valley railway which is located near Newquay, has three railways to explore, but a whole host of other activities such as crazy golf, a canoeing lake and play areas perfect for kids. The ticket office opens daily at 9.30am with the first train departing at 10am. Adult tickets cost £12.95, children £10.50 and toddlers aged 2 and under go free. Tickets give you access to all of the activities available in Lappa Valley.
Tintagel Village and Castle
One of the most visited villages in Britain, Tintagel village and its castle are closely associated with King Arthur with the legend saying that he was conceived and born here. Situated in north Cornwall, Tintagel doesn’t just house historical medieval buildings but also has a rugged coastline with dramatic sea views and caves on the beach, one of which was rumoured to be the home of Merlin. As if that wasn’t enough to occupy your kids there’s also St Nectan’s Glen woodland walk and waterfall situated just outside the village.
The Flambards Experience
Situated in Helston, Flambards amusement park is fun for all the family with thrilling rollercoasters, family friendly rides, indoor play areas and indoor attractions suitable for those who love exhibitions and museums which show you what life was like in Victorian times, during the Blitz and there’s also a life size simulation of Concorde. It sounds like our perfect family day out, my husband will be on the thrilling amusement rides while I immerse myself in history.
A National Trust garden located next to the hamlet of Durgan with a maze which kids will truly love. A variety of wildlife can be seen in the gardens during the summer and at the foot of the garden is Durgan beach which is the perfect place to create sandcastles, dip a toe in the warm sea or skim pebbles across the water.
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Located next to the village of Gweek and owned by the Sea Life Trust, the Cornish Seal Sanctuary is a haven for injured seals and pups who have been rescued and rehabilitated on the site before being released back in to the wild. At any one time the sanctuary houses between sixty and eighty seals. Open daily from 10am, adult tickets start at £10.85, with children costing £8.75 and under threes going free.
We love nothing better than a good beach day with a play tent for plenty of shade, a bucket and spade for making sand castles with and our swimming cozzies on just in case we are brave enough to take a dip. I bet getting in the water down at Portcothan beach is a lot nicer than braving the bitter North Sea we have up here! Situated just ten minutes away from the nearest village of St. Merryn, Portcothan beach is popular with sunbathers, surfers and families alike who appreciate the sheltered sandy beach and lovely views from the coastal path above. A lifeguard covers the area from mid May until the end of September.
An extremely busy National Trust tidal beach famous for its white sand, turquoise sea and rock stacks, Kynance Cove is the perfect summer escape for families who love sunbathing or prefer seeking out coastal paths to explore. Dolphins can be spotted during the summer months from Lizard Point, an amazing sight for kids and adults alike and it’s easy to see why Kynance has been voted one of Britain’s best beaches!
A small rocky island 3.5 miles off the coast of St. Ives and home to colony of Atlantic grey seals, Seal Island is the perfect trip out for kids who love animal spotting while enjoying a boat ride out on the sea. Even better, the skipper will point out where the sites of sea wrecks are letting kids use their imaginations to envisage pirates from the past wrecked off the coast of our wonderful British isles. There are plenty of boat services in the area to choose from and a family of four will cost around £30-40 for a trip lasting just over ninety minutes.
Want to learn more about planning the perfect Cornwall holiday? Check out this guide to planning the perfect holiday in Cornwall
Thanks to the following bloggers who helped me write this post with their knowledge of Cornwall:
What do you like doing in Cornwall with kids?