Places to Go

Beaches in St Ives

St Ives is the perfect Cornwall holiday spot: quaint cobbled streets, great local shopping and the Tate St Ives Gallery for a taste of culture. St Ives also has stunningly beautiful beaches and you can find out all about them here and also find an equally lovely St Ives cottage nearby.


St Ives is one of the best loved towns in Cornwall, painted for hundreds of years by renowned artists who are drawn to the area because of the light created by the crystal clear coastal water reflecting the sky.  The town boasts unique cobbled streets, quaint eclectic shops and a vast selection of eateries from small pasty makers to The Porthminster Cafe, one of the leading restaurants in the area. You can check out the weather before venturing to the beach with our webcam in St Ives.


Porthminster Beach

Porthmeor Beach in St Ives at low tide

This is the first beach you will see when you drive down the main road into St Ives. You can park above the beach in the train station car park but this does get really busy in summer and you may need to park further away and walk. The beach is pretty much a perfect crescent shape with golden sand and gently sloping. It is very sheltered and ideal for families with children. One of the few Blue Flag beaches in Cornwall, it is pristine year round and has life guard cover during busier months. The Porthminster Beach Cafe is perched above the beach and the outdoor terrace is a great place to go for lunch.


St Ives Harbour

St Ives Harbour beach at high tide. 

This is probably the most photographed beach in St Ives, and is the star of our webcam. Easily accessed from the harbour, this sheltered beach is lovely and safe for swimming, particularly at high tide. If you don’t fancy getting wet, sit back and watch the fishermen bring in their daily catch, or wander along the front to one of the many cafes, pubs and shops. This spot is ideal for letting your dog cool off, but it’s worth noting that the summer dog ban is in place on this beach.


Bamaluz Beach

Bamaluz Beach in St Ives

This is the best beach if you’re after a little peace and quiet away from the crowds. Rarely busy, Bamaluz Beach is nestled in between Porthgwidden and the harbour. It is dog friendly all year round for dogs that need a cool down and is usually quite well protected from wind for swimming. Its sheltered position does mean it can lose the sun as the evening comes, and at high tide the beach can all but vanish, but it’s the loveliest, quietest little beach spot in St Ives.



Porthgwidden Beach in St Ives

So we all know you shouldn’t have a favourite child but I feel the same way about this beach as I would my favourite child. I love it. Tucked away and hard to find, it’s usually pretty quiet. If you go early enough there is a small car park nearby but it’s worth an early start as it’s a bit of a trek from the other town car parks. The beach itself is small but perfectly formed, with gently sloping soft golden sand. Porthgwidden Beach Cafe overlooks the beach and is the ideal place for a long leisurely lunch overlooking the clear blue waters.


Porthmeor Beach

surfing on Porthminster beach in St Ives, Cornwall

Porthmeor is further around the coast and is more exposed to the Atlantic making it popular with surfers. The Tate Gallery stands majestically overlooking the beach and you can always call in for a spot of culture before stepping on to the sand. You can buy lunch in town and make a picnic or alternatively pop in to the Porthmeor Beach Cafe which is open all day. The beach is relatively flat, sandy and also has a Blue Flag award. Parking nearby is limited so you’ll either need to get there early in high season or park further away in one of the larger car parks in town. Usually a good family friendly beach, you do have to check the weather as the waves can come crashing in at times.


If you’re looking to stay in St Ives take a look here at some of our lovely properties in the area.


More reading

Food vans of Cornwall

Food vans of Cornwall

Peckish? Stuck in the beautiful wilderness of Cornwall? Don’t panic. There may be a fantastic food truck just around the corner. 

Classic Fodder 3 years ago Kayleigh Hardy
5 late summer music festivals in Cornwall 

5 late summer music festivals in Cornwall 

Find your groove from August through to October with these family friendly festivals and more mature musical events in Cornwall.

Places to Go 3 years ago Abby D
Top tips for a UK beach holiday

Top tips for a UK beach holiday

We know beach holidays pretty well so we’ve gathered together some of our best hints and tips and put them in one handy blog for you.

Places to Go 3 years ago Kayleigh Hardy
How to Spot a Rip Current

How to Spot a Rip Current

It’s best to familiarise yourself with the dangers that come with swimming in the sea so that you can stay safe and happy - how to spot a rip current is important.

Visitors' Book 3 years ago Lizzie Heather