Images by Mike Searle
I love walking and I love food. So for me and the Black Dog, a brisk dog walk that’s punctuated by a good lunch is pretty much our idea of heaven. And luckily for us, living as we do in Cornwall, we’re spoilt for choice when it comes to breathtaking scenery and tasty culinary delights. These are just a few of our favourite dog-friendly pubs in Cornwall that we can walk to:
One for a special occasion - Watergate Bay and Fifteen
We only ever do this combo if there’s something to celebrate, such as my birthday. Watergate Bay boasts a two mile sweep of sand, with views of Pentire Point in the west to Park Head, past Bedruthan Steps in the east, and best of all - dogs are allowed all year. Either park up at Watergate Bay itself for a saunter up and down the beach, or arrive on foot via the coastal path. Fifteen is delectable, there’s an incredibly affordable set-price lunch menu, a tapas bar and quite possibly unrivalled coastal views. Booking is essential.
Windswept recovery - Pendeen coastal walk and Gurnard's Head
The Gurnards Head is a gastro delight, slung out in the far reaches of Penwith. We like to go here to refuel after windswept walks on the moor, but have the following planned out on our ‘to do’ list too: start with lunch at The Gurnard's Head (starters and main only), head down to the coastal landmass the pub takes its name from, follow the coastal path north towards Zennor, stop at Moomaids for a desert ice-cream, and then catch the open-top bus back to pick up the car.
Summer loving - Helford River and the Ferryboat Inn
We can think of few other places we’d rather be on a hot Cornish summer’s day than by the Helford River, quaffing oysters and chilled white wine. To make sure we combine this with a brisk walk we’ll start off at Trebah Gardens (dogs on leads welcome), which wind down to the river in a tropical tangle. Head towards Helford Passage on the coastal path, through wooded valleys, past craggy outcrops and sheltered coves, to the delicious Ferryboat Inn.
Forest forays - Cardinham Woods and Woods Cafe
A mass of steep wooded valleys in the heart of mid Cornwall, Cardinham Woods is a foresty delight for dog walkers, walkers, cyclists, runners, kids, horse riders and sometimes (in the depths of winter) cars on classic trial events. The hub of the woods can be busy, but you don’t need to go far on well signed paths to escape from the crowds. Woods Cafe sits at the heart of the hub, with a brilliant menu of homemade lunch delights. The cakes are particularly amazing and take pride of place on the counter.
Surfing circular - Porthtowan to Chapel Porth National Trust Cafe
A brilliant circular walk if you take the beach route on low tide one way and then follow the coastal path the other way. The coastline is scarred, staggering and iconic in this part of Cornwall and the beaches at Porthtowan and Chapel popular with surfers. The National Trust Cafe at Chapel is a brilliant halfway house for filling up with all manner of clotted cream laced treats – the cafe is a takeaway with a few tables out front. There’s a dog ban at Chapel Porth during the summer, so if you’re walking with hound put them on the lead and make a quick exit from the beach.