Golden beaches, sandy coves, scenic coastal paths, and blue waters – these are just some perks you’ll get to enjoy at the best place for a family holiday in Cornwall.
This diverse county not only offers great views but a ton of things to do as well while you’re in the county, for both kids and adults, so there’s never a dull day!
From lush forests to miles of granite coasts, quaint fishing villages to unique architectures, and everything in between, Cornwall has a diverse range of incredible attractions that would be perfect for kids and families.
Depending on the kind of experiences you’re hoping to get on your trip, we’ve highlighted some of the best places in Cornwall for a family holiday regardless of the weather and the things you can do to help you plan the best trip to Cornwall for your family.
5 Best Place for a Family Holiday in Cornwall
- St. Ives
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5 Best Place for a Family Holiday in Cornwall
1. St. Ives
Perfect for first-timers and those who want to experience the best that the region offers, St. Ives could easily be one of the best places for holidays in Cornwall for families.
Located in a beautiful area that offers a good mix of everything, St. Ives is a good starting point for you to visit all the main sights and landmarks in Cornwall.
It also has some of the most beautiful world-class beaches as it is located on a narrow peninsula in the Celtic Sea, and four of these beaches are within walking distance of the town.
Check out Porthgwidden, a sheltered beach, small and a big hit for those with smaller families, whereas Porthmeor is a great place to watch surfing or jump on a board yourself!
Not too far from town, you can also check out the long stretch of sandy beaches from Hayle Beach to Gwithian Beach.
Be sure to check out the fishing harbours and take a boat to the nearby Seal Island, where you can watch grey Atlantic seals in their natural habitats – a fun activity for kids and adults alike.
While you’re there, take a scenic drive to Land’s End one of the best place for a family holiday in Cornwall and check out the coastal walks there too!
Other attractions you should check out in St. Ives:
- St. Ives Boat Trips (to Seal Island)
Best places to stay in St. Ives:
- Budget Stay: Primrose House
- Mid-range: The Western
- Luxury Stay: Carbis Bay and Spa Hotel
Best places to eat in St. Ives:
Bude is located in a remote area between the Cornwall and Devon border which means you will experience the best of both worlds during your trip.
It is a good family-friendly place to stay in Cornwall if you’re looking for a quiet family break with lots of local and natural attractions to enjoy.
It boasts miles of beautiful beaches, and one of the most famous ones is Summerleaze.
Ideal for young children, this beach has an impressive 300 feet long safe, part natural, part artificial pool known as the Bude Sea Pool, perfect for children to swim in when the waves are choppy.
Famous for its unusual rock formations, you can also book a geological tour to learn more about them, or optionally, you can hire a rowboat and explore the Bude Canal route as well as the 10-mile circular Planekeeper’s Path. If you have the time, why don’t you do both?
As one of the best family-friendly places to stay in Cornwall, Bude is packed with a variety of shops, restaurants, family attractions, cafes, and sandy beaches – there will never be a dull day in this town for you or your family to spend time in the best place for a family holiday in Cornwall, that’s for sure!
Other attractions you should check out in Bude:
Best places to stay in Bude:
- Budget Stay: Brendon Arms
- Mid-range: Atlantic House
- Luxury Stay: Morwenna Lodge
Best places to eat in Bude:
Situated on the Atlantic Coast in Cornwall’s northern part, Newquay has some of the best beaches in the county.
If you intend to take your family out for a laid-back summer holiday in a beautiful seaside town, this might be one of the best places to stay in Cornwall for families.
There’s something for every type of traveller in Newquay – good surfing sites, lovely beaches, exciting nightlife, and tons to see and do nearby.
Strategically located not too far from many of the main attractions in Cornwall, you could plan a day trip to attractions like Tintagel Castle, Falmouth, or St. Ives without worrying about travel time. The local airport is also nearby.
Fistral Beach is one of Newquay’s most known attractions – a mecca for surfers to catch incredible rolling waves and be funneled into it by the opposing headlands.
If you enjoy surfing but don’t have your gear, don’t worry! There are plenty of places to rent equipment, and if you’ve never surfed before, you can also book a beginner’s lesson to give it a go.
Family beaches like the Great Western, Lusty Glaze, Towan, and Tolcarne are quieter and more sheltered, often preferred for families with children as it is generally much safer.
Other attractions you should check out in Newquay:
Best places to stay in Newquay:
- Budget Stay: Marina Hotel
- Mid-range: Pine Lodge
- Luxury Stay: The Lewinnick Lodge
Best places to eat in Newquay:
A foodie’s haven, Padstow is the place to be for fresh produce and delicious food. A great Cornwall holiday with kids The main attraction is the bustling harbour filled with pleasure boats and working fishing boats that bring in fresh seafood every day to cater to the nearby restaurants.
Besides excellent, delicious food, Padstow also has many other attractions and activities worthy of a family trip. Get on a boat tour and check out the local marine wildlife such as puffins, seals, dolphins, and even sharks!
While you’re there, be sure also to check out Prideaux Place, a lovely Elizabethan house overlooking Padstow that offers a tour of the house itself, its gardens, as well as a teddy bear collection, and a deer park. That is sure to excite the kids!
Other attractions you should check out in Padstow:
Best places to stay in Padstow:
- Budget Stay: Drang House
- Luxury Stay: Padstow Harbour Hotel
Best places to eat in Padstow:
Looe is a quaint, pretty town on the southern coast of Cornwall that is ideal for one of the best family holidays in Cornwall. The River Looe divides into two, with charming little harbours and small, safe beaches for the whole family.
A family favourite among tourists is Millendreath Beach, which has a lot of rock pools to explore and is located in a cove that is sheltered, particularly on hot days.
Kids will particularly enjoy Looe as there are many opportunities for them to get up close and personal with animals of sorts, either at the Monkey Sanctuary in St. Martin or the Porfell Wildlife Park and Sanctuary. The Sardine Factory Heritage Centre also offers an educational insight into Looe’s fishing history that both kids and adults can enjoy.
While you’re there, make sure to take a boat to Looe Island, a marine nature reserve that can only be accessed via an official boat tour. Here, you can see all kinds of wildlife in their respective marines, coastal or woodland habitats.
Other attractions you should check out in Looe:
Best places to stay in Looe:
- Budget Stay: Looe Yurts
- Mid-range: Nancecliff Cottages (Dog-friendly)
- Luxury Stay: Wreckers Retreat 158
Best places to eat in Looe:
What To See And Do With Kids In Cornwall?
One of the top attractions for families and a favourite family holiday in Cornwall, the Eden Project has futuristic domed biomes home to the world’s largest indoor rainforest.
It also has a Mediterranean climate in one of the domes and interactive exhibits, plants from around the world, and a sensory garden.
Location: Google Maps
- Adults : £28.50 (USD 38.75)
- Children : £15 (USD 20.40)
- Family : £75 (USD 102)
Guaranteed to be a hit with the kids, this beachfront aquarium houses an array of ocean creatures such as turtles, sharks, and a giant Pacific octopus in 40 different habitats. Wander through the ocean tunnel and try spotting as many animals as you can, from loggerhead turtles to pufferfish and many others!
Location: Google Maps
- Adults : £12.50 (USD 17)
- Children : £9.50 (USD 13)
- Family : £42 (USD 57.10)
The largest and oldest museum in Cornwall, the Royal Cornwall Museum, exhibits Cornish culture and heritage from the past to the present.
It has also expanded to include art and exhibits from around the world, like an Egyptian mummy and other family-friendly and kid-friendly activities and events.
Location: Google Maps
- Adults : £5 (USD 6.80)
- Children : Free
An adventure like no other, Pirate’s Quest is a must-go for children when in Cornwall. Here, they can journey back 300 years to the Golden Age of piracy meet buccaneers, mermaids, and smugglers while going on an hour-long discovery of Cornwall’s 18th-century history.
One of the best family holiday parks, here, kids will also be given a treasure map to claim the pirate treasure as part of the immersive experience.
Location: Google Maps
- Adults : £11.50 (USD 15.64)
- Children : £7.95 (USD 10.80)
Camel Creek is a great adventure theme park for children of all ages and has a bit of everything – indoor and outdoor play, 5D theater, animals, and many more.
They have gentle rides for the little ones and some more adventurous rides like roller coasters for those who love a little thrill. This is also an excellent activity for a rainy day in Cornwall.
What Is The Best Way To Get Around Cornwall With Kids?
The best way to get around Cornwall with kids is to drive by car. The roads are good in most parts of Cornwall, but the streets into the county can get pretty busy around July and August. Make sure to leave early and account for the time you will need to make pit stops for the loo or get snacks on the way.
Most towns also have bikes for hire to explore the local cycle paths and trails in the area.
When Is The Best Time To Plan A Family Holiday In Cornwall?
The best time to visit Cornwall with your family is from July to August, during summer when the temperatures will be warm and pleasant for a day out.
The average temperature during these months is around 19 ºC (66 ºF), with roughly 7 hours of sunlight a day.
There are fewer crowds and cheaper trips in winter, so this would be perfect for those looking to have a budget-friendly holiday with their family in Cornwall. May, June, and September are also great months to head to Cornwall for smaller crowds and lower prices,
Where Is The Best For Families In Cornwall?
The best place for families in Cornwall is Newquay. This seaside location is one of the best place for a family holiday in Cornwall making it a favourite among holiday experts for a traditional beach holiday for children. Newquay Zoo was also highly rated for a great family day out in Cornwall, especially among mums in Britain.
Is Cornwall Good For Family Holidays?
Cornwall family holidays are some of the best holidays in the UK. Renowned for its flour-fine, golden beaches, cliff-top walks, scenic coastal paths, sandy coves, and beautiful crystal blue waters, Cornwall is the perfect choice for staycations in the UK for families and children.
Travelling with kids can sometimes be difficult, especially when travelling out of town. Some of the best places to stay in Cornwall with your family will keep them occupied such as the Blue Reef Aquarium, and Eden Project where they can learn something new about nature.
We hope this guide to the best places for family holidays in Cornwall has helped you find the best locations and things to do not just for the kids, but for you too!