Fowey is a charming maritime town on the south coast of Cornwall. Set on the banks of the River Fowey, it is one of the county’s most beautiful locations with an array of restaurants, shops, cafes, and a plethora of beautiful walks right from the town centre.
The town has strong literary links to several famous authors including Daphne du Maurier, who once lived here, and Rosamunde Pilcher.
Discover our 8 top things to do in Fowey in this guide and once you’re done reading, click on the button below to book one of our wonderful Fowey holiday cottages and start counting down the days until your Cornwall getaway.
- Spend time at Fowey Harbour
- Browse the array of wonderful shops
- Head to Readymoney Cove beach
- Visit St Catherine’s Castle
- Walk the South West Coast Path to Lantic Bay
- Take a trip on the ferry to Mevagissey
- Spend a few hours at Fowey Aquarium
- Follow the Fowey Hall Walk trail
1. Spend time at Fowey Harbour
Set within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the sheltered, deep water of Fowey Harbour is a paradise for boat enthusiasts and water sports lovers. Perhaps you might enjoy a self-drive motor boat up the Fowey Estuary, or with a range of water sports on offer including kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, sailing and even sea fishing – you’ll be spoilt for choice!
2. Browse the array of wonderful shops
Fowey has a great selection of small, independent shops and galleries dotted along Fore Street, Fowey’s main street. There are also several well-known national brands including Saltrock, Seasalt and Mountain Warehouse to name a few. Fowey offers a wonderful blend of local and national shops that you simply wouldn’t find on the ‘normal’ high street. One of our personal favourites has to be Brocante.
3. Head to Readymoney Cove
Readymoney Cove is a charming sandy beach, which is about a 15-minute leisurely stroll or half a mile from the centre of Fowey. It is sheltered by cliffs close to the mouth of the River Fowey and bounded, on one side, by Fowey town and on the other, by St Catherine’s Castle.
There is a small café/shop and toilets here, and dogs are welcome on the beach except between 1 July and 31 August (10am-6pm) when a seasonal dog ban is in place (2024).
4. Visit St Catherine’s Castle
Photo credit: Fowey.co.uk
St Catherine’s Castle is a small artillery fort which was built by Henry VIII between 1538 and 1540 to defend Fowey Harbour. It is situated on the tip of a rocky headland, St Catherine's Point, at the entrance to the Fowey estuary.
The castle is accessible on foot from Readymoney Cove and is now in the care of English Heritage, although entry is free.
5. Walk the South West Coast Path to Lantic Bay
If you are a keen walker, or just love the outdoors, why not catch the ferry over to Polruan and walk the South West Coast Path to the beautiful Lantic Bay? It’s about 2 miles each way (so 4 miles if you walk there and back) along the South West Coast Path which for the most part, follows the contours of the cliff edge.
Even on an overcast day, you’ll be rewarded with some stunning views on the route, with viewpoints and benches along the way, should you wish to sit down and take in the breathtaking surroundings.
6. Take a trip on the ferry to Mevagissey
The Fowey to Mevagissey ferry operates seven days a week from the end of April until the start of October (weather permitting) with multiple daily departure and return times on offer.
The journey across St Austell Bay takes about 40 minutes and is a wonderfully unique way to visit Mevagissey. You are guaranteed to enjoy some incredible views of the Cornish coastline along the way and with a bit of luck, you may even spot some dolphins and seals.
7. Spend a few hours at Fowey Aquarium
Situated on the historic Fowey Town Quay, Fowey Aquarium gives a fascinating insight into the marine life which inhabits our UK waters. Most of the fish in the aquarium have been obtained from local fishermen and fresh seawater is pumped in daily at high tide to fill the tanks.
Although the aquarium is quite small, you will be amazed by the variety of marine creatures on display. Children will especially enjoy the touch pool where they can handle creatures such as starfish and crabs under expert supervision.
8. Follow the Fowey Hall Walk trail
The Hall Walk is one of the most popular walking trails in South Cornwall. The circular walk is 4 miles and includes two ferry crossings. The walk can be started from Fowey, Bodinnick or Polruan.
The walk which passes through beautiful woodland offers striking views across Fowey Harbour as well as the tranquil still waters of Pont Pill. The walk is classed as moderate because it does contain some steep climbs in places, but there are frequent benches along the way.
Map of the best things to do in Fowey
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Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing,
please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.