Walk - Padstow to Porthcothan

13.2 miles (21.3 km)

Padstow Porthcothan

Easy - Easy

This section of Coast Path offers a day of easy walking along low cliffs, with beautiful, tempting beaches below. The path leaves the attractive town of Padstow behind, passing the sheltered beach of Hawker’s Cove, before leading you out to the Atlantic Coast. The path can become narrow in places and is quite rocky around Constantine Bay.

Walking round Trevose Head, one of Cornwall’s most prominent headlands, provides spectacular views of the sandy bays ahead and if you can resist the beaches on your journey you will have more time to enjoy the sheltered dune-backed beach of Porthcothan at the end of your walk.

There are a range of wonderful places to lay your head near the Coast Path for a well-earned sleep. From large and luxurious hotels, to small and personable B&B's, as well as self-catering options and campsites. The businesses that support the Path, where you've chosen to visit, are listed here.

Penhalonga B&B

Family run B&B, full English breakfast. Single nights. Dogs welcome. Call Liz

Sunny Corner

Close to the sandy beach. Double/twin bedrooms both ensuite includes full breakfast, wifi, parking. Single night stays welcome

Carnevas Holiday Park

Located in unspoilt countryside bordering the North Cornish coastline, a short distance from Padstow and wonderful beaches. Bar serving food available at certain times and shop.

Tregella Place Camping

Basic rural site with some facilities. 10 min drive from Padstow

Penlan B&B

Situated 250m from Porthcothan Bay beach close to the Coast Path, midway between Padstow and Newquay on bus route. Twin ensuite and double ensuite

The Red Buoy

Right on the beach at Porthcothan next to the Path. Special wooden building with cabin bedroom and ensuite bathroom. Sleeps 2 - 4. Double room in main house available. Breakfast on request. Owned by local film maker and environmentalist.

Coswarth House

A beautifully furnished boutique hotel in a listed building with breakfast served at Rick Stein's Cafe. Each room has a luxury bathroom.

Macdonald's Farm Touring & Camping

Small family run Farm Park, B&B plus Campsite just ½ a mile from beautiful Porthcothan Bay, along the coast between Padstow and Newquay.

South Quay B&B

A house on the harbourside in Padstow. 2 double rooms, the en suite top bedroom has a tiny terrace under the gable of the house.

Tresco Farm

Wild camping farm site, pub within walking distance. 2 mile from coast.

Dennis Cove Campsite

Closest campsite to the harbour,10min walk from the Path via the Camel Trail. Serene site bordering the Camel Estuary. A perfect base to explore the Cornish coastline & beaches.

Mariners Lettings Ltd

Mariners Lettings - seven self-catering properties in Rock ranging in size from two to five bedrooms, 500 metres from the SW Coast Path

Linhay Cornwall

Attractive cosy cottage in a tranquil location, just a short drive from foodie haven Padstow and close to many beautiful beaches.

Traeth Barn

Characterful cottage, close to local amenities just 0.5 from the beach. See wide selection of properties from Cornish Horizons

Interactive Elevation


  • Gun Point: featuring on maps dating from 1801, here you will find the remains of fortifications thought to date back to the time of the Spanish Armada.
  • Orchids and reed buntings in the marshes of Harbour Cove.
  • Views from Stepper Point with its navigation station. Much of this area is farmed under the Countryside Stewardship scheme, which means that the land is farmed in an environmentally sensitive way, banishing chemical fertilisers and encouraging wildlife and flowers.
  • Nesting birds on limestone layers of Marble Cliffs, Porthmissen.
  • Round Hole near Trevone: a collapsed sea cave.
  • Harlyn: an Iron Age cemetery was discovered buried beneath the Harlyn Inn. It contained over 100 coffins with human remains and bronze and iron ornaments. These are now in the museum in Truro. Keep a look out for seals around Harlyn Bay.
  • The Old Fish Cellars above Harlyn Bay which were once used for processing pilchards. Carved into the lintel are the ironic words “Lucri Dulcis Odor” or “Profit Smells Sweet”. No doubt the smells were far from sweet when the building was a working fish cellar and the profit itself far from sweet due to the 16th-century Curse of Mother Ivey! 
  • Padstow's Lifeboat Station in Mother Ivey’s Bay, open to visitors Mon-Fri 10.00-16.00 (including weekends during the summer).
  • Trevose Head Lighthouse opened in 1847, and is available for holiday hire.
  • Enjoying the wonderful names, such as Big Guns Cove, Cat’s Cove and Stinking Cove.
  • Watching the surfers and having a picnic at Constantine Bay: a beautiful beach of golden sands backed by dunes.
  • The marine life of Treyarnon Bay exposed at low tide.
  • Resting on the beach in Porthcothan Bay.

Shorter option

Stop at Treyarnon Bay (11.4 miles, 18.3 km).

Longer option

Continue to Mawgan Porth (an additional 4.4 miles, 7.2 km).

Public transport

The nearest train station is Bodmin Parkway, from where you can get a bus direct to Padstow (about 1hr journey), from where you can change buses for Porthcothan. For timetable information, zoom in on the interactive map and click on the bus stops, visit Traveline or phone 0871 200 22 33.


Padstow (Post Code for Sat Navs: PL28 8DT), Trevone, Harlyn, Trevose Head, Treyarnon Bay and Porthcothan.


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