A day trip to the town of Padstow
Cornwall is home to countless towns and fishing villages that are steeped in history and charm. However, if you’re planning a trip to Clowance or Bude, then a visit to the picture-perfect port of Padstow should be at the top of your list.
Here’s our idea of the perfect day trip to Padstow, including some of the top things to see and do in the Cornish town.
Cycle the Camel Trail
The Camel Trail is an 18 mile cycle route which stretches along a picturesque disused railway line from Wenford Bridge to the centre of Padstow via the towns of Wadebridge and Bodmin. The most popular section is from Wadebridge to Padstow, as the path is just 5.5 miles long and takes you past the beautiful Camel Estuary and through the wooded countryside of the upper Camel Valley.
If you’re just spending the day in Padstow, this is undoubtedly the best way to reach the fishing town. Not only can you enjoy a leisurely cycle ride along the beautiful Cornwall coastline, but during busier periods, you won’t need to embark on a frantic search for a parking space!
Visit the National Lobster Hatchery
On the outskirts of Padstow, at the end of the Camel Trail, is The National Lobster Hatchery. This unique conservation charity is doing vital work to preserve lobster populations in Europe and, in turn, help support local communities.
The Hatchery is home to a fantastic visitor centre which features interactive activities and live exhibits. You can even sponsor a lobster through their ‘Adopt a Lobster’ scheme, which you can then track through their website at a later date to discover where and when it was set free.
Sample Stein’s fish and chips
Nothing says a trip to the seafront like fish and chips. Often dubbed ‘Padstein’, the town is home to no less than three restaurants by the celebrated seafood chef, Rick Stein.
The Seafood Restaurant serves a delicious selection of sophisticated seafood dishes, and Rick Stein’s Cafe is perfect for tea and cake or a proper cooked breakfast. However, Stein’s Fish & Chips is ideal for those who fancy enjoying an unfussy bite to eat al fresco. The popular harbourside restaurant and takeaway serves locally caught fish fried in traditional beef dripping alongside chips, mushy peas, and homemade tartare sauce.
Take to the water
Why stay on land when there are miles of river and ocean to explore? Padstow’s position on the North Cornwall coast means it’s the perfect place to set sail on a boat trip. Spend the afternoon exploring the nearby islands and get up close to wildlife on a Sealife Safari, embark on a fishing trip with local fisherman, or enjoy an exhilarating ride on a speed boat around the harbour.
Or, if you fancy heading further afield, why not take the ferry over to the town of Rock? Popular with the rich and famous, you can spend a few hours enjoying the town’s white sandy beaches, unusually calm blue waters, and quaint little shops.
Explore the South West Coastal path
The perfect way to end a day in Padstow is a peaceful walk along the South West Coast Path. The flat, winding route takes you along the cliff tops and offers breathtaking views of the coastline and the azure blue waters below. You’ll also be able to enjoy enchanting sunsets over the Atlantic at dusk.
If you fancy tackling the longer 13 mile route, head along the Atlantic Coast to Porthcothan, past Hawker’s Cove and around Trevose Head. Or, if you fancy a shorter stoll, walk inland from Harbour Cove and loop back past the Tudor Mansion of Prideaux Place on the return trip to Padstow.