Things to do

Cornwall dog walk from Porthleven to The Loe

It was the perfect day for a proper dog walk; bright blue skies, a hint of a chill in the air and lashings of autumnal sunshine to take the edge off. So off we headed down to a part of the county I love dearly, yet rarely visit due to the 1+ hour drive to get there.

We parked up in Porthleven and after a quick mosey about the quaint port town we headed down to the harbour walls toward the Clock Tower of 2014 storm fame.

The iconic view of Porthleven in Cornwall.

From here we swung left and walked the path that hugged the clifftop that runs parallel to the beach (the tide was in, but at low tide on the way back we spotted several dogs having great fun in the shallows). We continued along the coast path and as we rose gently out of Porthleven and along the coast toward Loe Bar the coastal vistas were absolutely breath-taking. We passed a couple of other dog walkers, but for the most part it was just the three of us.

Dog friendly and family friendly walk for your next holiday in Cornwall.

After half an hour or so we ended up at the Loe, a freshwater lake that was once the mouth of the River Cobers at the harbour in Helston. But by the 13th century, the bar had cut Helston off from the sea and formed the pool. It was a strange but alluring landscape: in one view you could take in the Atlantic Ocean, sandy beach and the largest freshwater lake in Cornwall, all backed by woodland.

Head out on this walk for amazing views of Porthleven in Cornwall.

The beach might look like a perfectly pleasant place to take a dip, but Loe Bar has a bit of a reputation for its powerful waves, strong current and steep bank. The result? It’s a very dangerous stretch of beach and you’re best off admiring it from the shore.

We walked inland through the trees and woods of Penrose.

We kept Monty on his lead as he can’t say no to swimming and instead headed inland and down to the lake and walked some of the perimeter. It was an odd but welcome change of scenery as we left the coast behind and delved deeper into the woods.

Monty tested out the outdoor gym equipment for us.

As we made our way around we spotted a couple of the National Trust ‘Green Gym’ activities – a great idea for those looking to increase their fitness without a gym membership. Predictably, Monty was more interested in the lake and thoroughly enjoyed a swim and a cool down in the safer lake waters. We followed the lake for a while, before heading back towards Porthleven. The route we followed on the way back took us slightly above the coast path, offering even better views than on the way out.

Great views all round on our dog walk from Porthleven to the Loe.

When we arrived back in Porthleven we made a beeline for The Ship Inn where we enjoyed a restorative pint while Monty had a nap under the table. We sat at the table googling nearby places to eat and – having already tried Kota and been totally wowed – we headed out towards Helston in search of Boo Koos. If Americana décor and big burgers are you jam, you have to go. Check out the review here.

Stay near Porthleven and follow this route for yourself or take your pick from the rest of our holiday cottages and start planning your next break.

More reading

Discount walking guides

Discount walking guides

We've got a special Classic discount on walking books. All the walks in each book are circular and each has all the information walkers need for a good day out.

News & Offers 4 years ago Katie Chown
An American in Cornwall: Wild garlic foraging in Falmouth

An American in Cornwall: Wild garlic foraging in Falmouth

Everything smelled like rain. It was a smell I hadn't gotten used to yet, the smell of rain in Cornwall.

Visitors' Book 5 years ago Danielle Charles-Davies
The Magic of Mount's Bay

The Magic of Mount's Bay

Not just for those with a Bus Pass... this journey is best taken on an open top bus!

Visitors' Book 5 years ago Maz C
5 Dog-friendly walks with pubs in Cornwall

5 Dog-friendly walks with pubs in Cornwall

Combining two of the best bits about holidays in Cornwall - dog-friendly pubs and lovely long walks.

Things to do 3 years ago Sian Pickles