Family-friendly Things to do and see in North Cornwall
Cornwall is the perfect destination for UK travellers looking to stay in the country rather than travel abroad. If you’re planning a family day out in the northern part of the county then look no further than this list. From the rare animals of Newquay Zoo to the pretty harbour of Padstow, here are five family friendly destinations for you in north Cornwall.
Located in the popular Cornish surfing town, Newquay Zoo is a great day out for the entire family. The zoo is home to an array of rare animals, including ring tailed lemurs, capybaras and Carpathian lynx. But by far the zoo’s most popular exhibit is its pride of African lions. You can join experiences to feed the lions, as well as the zoo’s penguins, and there’s even a junior keeper experience for budding young animal lovers.
The zoo also works to breed rare creatures to help preserve them for future generations to enjoy. And they help out native UK wildlife too, such as with the breeding and release of hazel dormice and cirl buntings, a farmland bird whose population has crashed in recent years.
Your ticket price to Newquay Zoo helps to support these rare species as you enjoy your family day out. Ticket prices start at just £13.90 for adults and £10.45 for children, though kids under 3 go free.
Padstow is another of north Cornwall’s most popular locations. Known for its pretty harbour and quaint fisherman’s cottages, kids and adults alike will enjoy a stroll around the town. Padstow is just as famous for its fish and chips, particularly those served in celebrity chef Rick Stein’s award-winning seafood restaurant. Whether you’re a lover of shellfish, lobster, plaice or a good old fashioned plate of steak and chips, it’s all on the menu at Stein’s restaurant.
Combine your afternoon in Padstow with a boat trip out to sea and you have an amazing day for the entire family in the offing. There are numerous local boat operators on the ground offering all kinds of trips, from whale watching to angling.
There are numerous places along the north Cornish coast where coasteering is offered. Bude and Newquay are probably the two best locations, but it is worth doing some research if you decide this activity is for you. Not suitable for younger children, but perfect for older kids and adults, coasteering is the adrenaline-filled art of rock jumping. Leap from cliffs into the sea, explore hidden sea caves and swim against the waves, all guided and supported safely by experts. It’s a fun-filled way to explore the Cornish coast.
One such group of experts are the guys and girls of Cornish Coasteering, who are based at Dinham Farm campsite, near the small town of Rock. They and many other companies like them are specialists at showing families how to go coasteering safely.
You simply cannot travel all the way to north Cornwall without paying a visit to the beach. Some of the county’s beaches are packed with amenities, such as Polzeath beach. But others are more secluded, and therefore tend to have fewer crowds, especially in the peak months of summer. Bedruthan Steps is one such example.
Located around halfway between Newquay and Padstow, near the village of Treburrick, it is one of the most picturesque beaches in all of Cornwall. Reached by a steep staircase carved into the rock face, it is famous for the number of sea stacks which rise up from the beach. At low tide kids can climb up on these or build castles in the golden sand. There are no lifeguards at the beach so be careful if entering the sea, but the water tends to be relatively calm as it is protected by a nearby headland. If you want to avoid the crowds during your visit to Cornwall, then make sure to add Bedruthan Steps to your list of places to visit.
Camel Creek Adventure Park
Located just outside Wadebridge, Camel Creek Adventure Park is a family theme park suitable for kids and adults of all ages. There are dedicated rides for young children, and height restrictions on certain rides which are designed for older children and adults. Highlights of the park include Creeky’s Water Rush log flume and Swampy’s Drop Tower – riders will be lifted up to Swampy’s tree house for amazing views over the park before being dropped quickly from height. There are also soft play areas and ball pits for toddlers, so the whole family is catered for. You can purchase annual passes for the park or one off day tickets, with prices for an annual pass starting at £28.95.
Whether you’re visiting north Cornwall with young children or older adventurers, there are plenty of attractions in the area suitable for the whole family. It’s important to make the most of Cornwall’s famous coastline, but there’s plenty to keep you busy inland too.