Surf, Seafood & Saints... A Guide to Padstow

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The town of Padstow is a perennial favourite with visitors, with much to offer, meaning that many people return here time after time. Padstow is an historic fishing port with a maze of picturesque narrow streets of stone, colour-washed and slate cottages and a pretty working harbour. The harbour is, of course, the pivot around which the whole town revolves and, because there is always something going on, visitors are drawn to the seats around the quay. There is something very therapeutic about watching the world go by from this interesting spot.

There are many activities to enjoy in this area, such as regular boat trips, scenic walks along beautiful coastal paths, crazy golf or even a spot of fishing.  Within a short drive of Padstow, there are opportunities to go horse riding or go-karting, and the area has no shortage of golden sandy beaches where you can go rock-pooling, surfing or swimming.

Of course, if you prefer you can also just chill out, look around the shops and art galleries, or treat your taste buds in the fantastic range of eateries. In recent years, Padstow has gained a reputation as a foodie’s heaven, with many excellent restaurants, cafes and pubs.  The rise of celebrity chefs such as Rick Stein, Paul Ainsworth and Nathan Outlaw has helped this along.  You can try your hand as well, at the Seafood Cookery School, learning how to prepare and cook a number of fish dishes, and other culinary delights.

Padstow also has many appealing shops, pubs, restaurants and cafes and is home to the well known seafood restaurant owned by the town's celebrity chef Rick Stein who also has a bistro, café, fish and chip shop and cookery school in the town.

A short walk leads you to a beach in the estuary and it is only a drive of 5-10 minutes to the lovely sandy, surfing beaches of Trevone, Harlyn and Constantine Bay, or take the ferry across the river to Rock. Make sure to check out Harlyn Surf School on Harlyn beach who offer paddleboarding, coasteering, kayaking as well as surfing and equipment hire.

The Camel Trail starts in Padstow, following the route of the old railway line to Bodmin, and is much loved by walkers and cyclists (bikes may be hired at Padstow or Wadebridge). The path wends its way alongside the riverbank through this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty with its abundant wildlife. The estuary is a favourite stopping off point for migrant wading birds (up to 90 species!) who feed on the fertile mud flats during their journeys to and from the northern breeding grounds.

Christmas in Padstow is a very special time when the town is decorated with numerous Christmas lights. Mid December is also the time for late night Christmas shopping when local bands, street buskers, and the Padstow carollers take to the streets, and many shops and pubs offer mulled wine and snacks. Many of our properties in the town offer a special offer on bookings during this eventful weekend - visit our website nearer the time to view this offer.

With all this on offer, it’s no wonder that TripAdvisor travellers voted Padstow, and the surrounding area, the 10th best beach destination in the UK.