The Best Beach in Cornwall: Porthcurno Beach
Last Updated on July 14, 2023
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In the English summer, I went on an amazing road trip down to the south coast of England and visited the village of Porthcurno.
On this trip, I was lucky enough to visit Porthcurno Beach, which is the most beautiful beach in Cornwall and even the United Kingdom as a whole that I have EVER seen.
With a theatre hanging on the side of the cliff, bright turquoise coloured water and a white sand beach, it’s so picturesque you will feel like you’re in Greece!
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Everything to Know About Porthcurno Beach!
Porthcurno Beach is a 20-minute drive from Penzance and a 5 and a half hour drive from London but it’s totally worth the trip to experience the most beautiful beach in England!
When you get there, there are two carparks and I suggest (if you’re driving) to going all the way to the top of the hill instead of the one at the bottom because then you don’t have to pay for parking!
We parked by the beach at the bottom because it was further away from the theatre and we thought it would be cheaper, but turns out we were wrong!
The beach is something so special and it doesn’t feel like you’re at a UK beach because it’s not pebbled and over-crowded!
The village of Porthcurno is itself surprisingly famous for its size due to its history as a major international submarine communications cable station during the 1800s.
During this time, it was used as the British termination site for early incoming submarine telegraph cables.
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Top 3 Reasons to Visit Porthcurno Beach in Cornwall
- It’s the most beautiful beach in Cornwall with powdery white sand and clear blue waters
- Due to being in a cove, it is protected from large swells, making it the best beach to visit in Cornwall for families
- Stunning views! For those able to take a short hike up the nearby cliffside, you will be rewarded with some of the most breathtaking views of your life.
How to get to Porthcurno Beach?
If you are travelling to the UK, you have to come to Porthcurno and visit Porthcurno Beach.
This beautiful village and beach is definitely my new favourite place in the beautiful county of Cornwall.
But how can you get here? Here are the best ways to get to Porthcurno:
How to get to Porthcurno Beach from London
If you’re coming from London to Porthcurno, catch a train to Penzance which will take about 5 hours. From Penzance, you can then easily find a bus from there to Porthcurno.
Penzance to Porthcurno Bus
Whether you are coming from London, further afield, or within Cornwall, Penzance is the easiest and best city to get to Porthcurno from.
The Penzance to Porthcurno Bus is called 1A, which leaves every 2 hours and starts at £2 one way.
I also personally recommend staying in Penzance, so to return via bus Porthcurno to Penzance runs regularly throughout the day.
The last Porthcurno to Penzance bus time depends on the time of year and day you are visiting. If you want to know more about the timetable in either direction, then click here.
Rent a car
If you want to explore more of the area, the best option is to rent your own car rather than rely on public transportation.
This allows you full control over your itinerary and to travel from areas that don’t have direct public transport.
For example, you can come from further away and do Newquay to Porthcurno, or drive along the coast over to Sennen Cove and onto St. Ives.
From Penzance, you can access Porthcurno via the B3283. Follow this until it becomes the B3315, then look for signs to Porthcurno.
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Best Things to do in Porthcurno
You can easily spend the whole day lounging on the beautiful Porthcurno Beach. But if you want to explore the village and surrounding area, there are several fun Things to do in Porthcurno.
Being a coastal village, there are more beaches in Porthcurno worth exploring. The village and surrounding area has several of the best beaches in Cornwall.
Some of the other prettiest beaches in Cornwall worth visiting are Pedn Vounder Beach and Porthchapel Beach.
2. The Minack Theatre
After you have sunbathed on the most beautiful beach in UK until your heart’s content, then you have to make sure you climb the steep and narrow steps up to the top of the hill.
Just a 5-minute walk away up the surrounding cliffside is the beautiful open-air Minack theatre.
Opened in 1930 under the direction of Rowena Cade, the theatre is a must-see for anyone visiting Porthcurno – especially those who love the arts.
From here, you can get some fantastic pictures of Porthcurno Beach, and surrounding coastal area. If you come at sunrise or sunset, the views are truly phenomenal.
The theatre grounds also offer a dazzling subtropical garden, a cafe, tours and workshops. You can even catch a show if you plan accordingly.
There is a small cost to get in (except for local residents for whom it is free), but it’s totally worth it because the views from Minack Theatre are amazing.
Book your slot in advance, however, otherwise, you might not be able to get in! If going for a show, bring a cushion and a shawl or jacket.
They even have live shows still running at the theatre which you should totally check out if you’re in this area for a few days.
3. Walk the South West Coast Path
As the name suggests, this 630-mile path stretches along the entire south coast of England.
Of course you won’t be trekking the whole thing on a day trip, but you can use the path to stretch your legs and explore more of the surrounding area and nearby beaches.
There are so many remarkable coastal walks in the South of England, so you must do at least one of them when you’re down that way visiting Porthcurno Beach.
You could easily spend a couple of weeks exploring Cornwall and all the gems it has to offer.
4. Logan Rock
This incredible granite rock headland is a must if you’re in the area. You can walk here from Porthcurno via the S.W. Coast Path.
I recommend visiting at sunrise or sunset if you can.
5. Song of the Sea Cave in Nanjizal
Visiting this extraordinary hidden gem feels a bit like entering a magical world. The sea cave boasts two natural pools and a reef where you can swim and bask in its ethereal beauty.
While this one is walkable (about a 90-minute walk each way), I would only recommend going if you have a car.
Where to Stay in Porthcurno
Unfortunately, there aren’t really any options for accommodation in Porthcurno outside of private vacation rentals.
Instead, if you are looking for the best Porthcurno Beach accommodation options, I recommend staying in Penzance.
Here are some of the best places to stay in Penzance:
- The Beach Club – This beautiful beachfront property has a charming decor and incredibly comfortable beds to make you feel right at home.After a day at the beach, you can relax with room service and fast WiFi. The buffet breakfast is also a tasty bonus.
- The Summer House – Located next to some of the best beaches in Penzance, this B&B will let you extend your visit to Porthcurno Beach in spirit with its range of nearby beaches and available water sports. Guests can enjoy lounging in the garden, shared lounge or bar.
Have you been to Porthcurno and Porthcurno Beach? Did you fall in love? Do you have another beautiful spot in Cornwall or the South of England you would like to share? Please let me know in the comments.
Frequently Asked Questions
During the 1800s, the village of Porthcurno was used as an international submarine communications cable station. Today it is well known for having some of the best beaches in Cornwall.
Porthcurno Beach is located in the coastal village of Porthcurno, which in the South England county of Cornwall.
You can either get the bus from Penzance or drive there via the B3283. Follow signs for Porthcurno. Once there, you can park in the car park and walk on foot to the beach.
Other articles you will love:
- Amazing Places to Visit in Cornwall [United Kingdom]
- Your Guide to Some of the Best United Kingdom Attractions
- Beautiful Places to Visit in England (That’s Not London!)
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