Walk - Stepper Point, Padstow

1.5 miles (2.4 km)

Hawkers Cove Car Park, near Padstow - PL28 8HJ Hawkers Cove Car Park, near Padstow

Easy - An easy walk, with a shorter version suitable in dry weather for some mobility scooters and prams, along grass and stone tracks out to the Day Mark tower and Coastwatch lookout station situated on a spectacular headland.

A fairly level walk across wildlife rich farmland out to the Day Mark lookout tower at Stepper Point, from where you get great views along the coast and up the Camel Estuary.

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.

Tresco Farm

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

Sunny Corner

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

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.

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

Carruan Farm

Walk across our fields to farmhouse annexe with stunning views, wood burner, garden, central heating. Sleeps 2.Very Spacious. Sorry no pets. Can collect from path

Tregella Place Camping

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

Trevanger Farm

Wild camping on beef farm. 2 miles to coast. Walking distance to shop and restaurants.

Penhalonga B&B

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

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.

Penlan B&B

Situated 250m from Porthcothan Bay beach close to the Coast Path, midway between Padstow and Newquay on bus route. Twin ensuite .
What is on your list of things to do when you visit the Path? From walking companies, to help you tailor your visit, with itineraries and experts to enhance your visit, to baggage transfer companies and visitor attractions there are lots to people and places to help you decide what you'd like to do. The businesses that support the Path, where you've chosen to visit, are listed here.

Padstow Tourist Information

All the information you need to enjoy your visit to Padstow.

Interactive Elevation

Route Description

  1. From the Hawker’s Cove Car Park (seasonal - when closed, limited parking on the road) near Lellizzick walk back onto the lane, turn right, and after about 100 metres take the path leading off through the gate on the left. From here follow the track around the edge of the field.

The farmland around you has been managed under Natural England’s Higher Level Stewardship Scheme for a number of years. Many of the fields that you will be passing through were once arable fields. These fields have been allowed to naturally revert to the wild grass meadows that you see. Sheep graze these fields, and ground-nesting birds nest in the areas of rough grassland, so please keep your dog on a lead, particularly in the spring and early summer. Along with the coastal grazing slopes they are managed without fertiliser and sprays.

Late cutting for hay and silage protects ground-nesting birds, as by the time the fields are cut the young have fledged. This is one of the best sites for skylark, particularly noticeable in early spring. There is also wider wildlife benefits associated with the management that is in place here. In addition, underlying archaeology in some of these fields is protected as the fields are no longer cultivated.

Grazing has been introduced on the cliff slopes to open up the mat of grass and also to prevent scrub encroachment. There is a rich seed bank here, with many species of flowers. The grazing management here is helping to create a diversity of flowing plants for which the slopes of the Cornish cliffs are famous. You can help support this work by purchasing meat from the Padstow Farmshop that comes from the animals that graze these areas. You pass the Farm shop on the way to the start of the walk and it has a great range of local produce to make a delicious picnic.

If you look inland from a vantage point you will see that most fields have quite wide margins where no crop is grown, again for the benefit of wildlife. Some fields have grassy margins; others are cultivated, but not sown with a crop, to encourage rare arable weeds. In one or two fields wild bird seed mixes are sown and in others over-wintered stubble is left. This provides a source of winter food for farmland birds and helps them survive to the next breeding season.

  1. When you reach a gateway, branch off left towards the clifftop (unfenced, so take care of children and dogs), where close to Butter Hole you join the Coast Path. Following the Coast Path to the right, the path leads along the cliffs to a Day Mark tower – erected to help mariners find the entrance to the Camel Estuary. This part of the Coast Path is a bit too steep and narrow for mobility scooters, but rugged scooters can get to the Day Mark by following the track leading towards the Coastwatch Institute and taking a left across the field once you are on the plateau. See the Photo Trails website for more details.

The dramatic headland at Stepper Point marks the entrance to the Camel Estuary and features prominently in the opening episodes of Poldark.

  1. Pass through the gap in the wall, just inland of the Day Mark and cross the field to reach the lookout hut manned by volunteers of the National Coastwatch Institute.

The waters around here have proved treacherous over the years, with the infamous Doom Bar – a ridge of sand close to the mouth of the estuary causing many shipwrecks over the years.

  1. From the lookout station, a grass track leads back along the ridge and will bring you back to Butter Hole and the start of the walk.

Public transport

It is not possible to reach the start of the walk by public transport. However you could start the walk at Padstow, which is about 2 miles along the Coast Path. For details of buses to Padstow visit Traveline or phone 0871 200 2233.


Hawkers Cove Car Park – from the B3276 on the outskirts of Padstow follow the signs to Padstow Farm Shop (Postcode for Sat Navs: PL28 8HJ) and then continue onwards to Hawker’s Cove.


Walk Finder


Postcode, placename or click the icon to use current location

Click/hold and drag the map to set the centre point of your search location under the red crosshair

from this location


Length (miles)



Find somewhere to Eat & Drink, Sleep or Do


Postcode, placename or click the icon to use current location

Click/hold and drag the map to set the centre point of your search location under the red crosshair

from this location

Interactive Map