Cornwall’s beaches always have something for everyone. Families can enjoy a day out on the county’s coast, in the...
Discover the beauty of Porthgwidden Beach and its inviting golden sands.
Located on the north coast of Cornwall in the harbour town of St Ives, Porthgwidden Beach is one of five picture perfect beaches otherwise known as the ‘St Ives collection’.
Nestled on the north side of the Porthgwidden peninsular, between the grassy slopes of ‘The Island’ and Bamaluz Beach, the Atlantic views are unrivalled and take in both St Ives Bay and Godrevy Lighthouse.
Read on for our complete guide to Porthgwidden Beach…
Porthgwidden Beach is a small and sheltered sandy beach that sits in the lee of ‘The Island’, making it a reliable sun trap. East facing, it is the ultimate spot for those looking to bask in the sun all day long.
The crystal clear waters and rocky outcrops on either side of the beach, ideal for snorkelling, make it a popular destination, especially for those with a love of sea swimming!
Just a five minute walk from St Ives town centre, Porthgwidden Beach can be accessed by foot on the South West Coast Path, or by car with immediate parking available in The Island car park situated next to the beach.
If you are arriving by car, Porthgwidden Beach is approximately 26 miles from the city of Truro.
The postcode for sat nav directions is TR26 1SY.
Read our parking section for more details about parking charges and how to pay.
St Ives town also has a bustling train station. Famously known as the St Ives Bay line, you can travel by train from both Truro and Penzance and enjoy sweeping coastal views on route – visit the Great Western Railway website for tickets and timetables.
It is also possible to travel to St Ives by bus, details of which can be found on the First Bus website.
Porthgwidden Beach is located right next to The Island car park which provides direct access to the beach. Tickets can be purchased on an hourly, daily and weekly basis and the pay station accepts coins / notes, contactless, Apple Pay and Google Pay. Disabled parking is also available.
The carpark fills up quickly at peak times (weekends and summer holidays), so it’s advised to either arrive early or join late afternoon to beat the crowds.
Additionally, Trenwith car park is situated at the top of St Ives town and is much larger. Do note this is a steep climb and can be hard work on tired legs.
Relaxed and friendly, Porthgwidden Beach Café is open year round for the duration of the day. Renowned for specialising in Mediterranean and Asian seafood the Porthgwidden Beach Café menu is varied with something to suit all taste buds.
Looking for a delicious beverage? Porthgwidden Beach Café boasts a fully licensed bar and serves a sumptuous selection of cocktails, local ales, wine and champagne.
The perfect beach café to embrace all elements, you will find a fully enclosed glass terrace that remains heated and cosy in cooler weather and a sun-soaked deck for those wanting to dine al fresco. Dogs are welcome on the indoor terrace.
Beneath the main restaurant is the Porthgwidden Takeaway and Bar. The wooden benches are conveniently placed providing quick and easy access to the beach, the beach shop and public toilets. Subject to seasonal opening times, the takeaway is not open all year round.
Porthgwidden Beach is fringed with quintessential beach pods. With 36 Porthgwidden Beach Pods in total, they are available to hire on a daily or weekly basis. With ample space for storing beach accessories, each pod is equipped with two deckchairs. Additional items such as parasols and windbreaks can be hired from the shop situated on the beach.
Split between two levels, The Balcony and The Terrace, the pods were built with privacy and security in mind with those found on The Terrace providing flat and level access to all amenities.
If you’re looking to bring your four-legged friend with you for a holiday in St Ives, then it is worth noting that whilst Porthgwidden Beach is dog-friendly, there is a seasonal dog ban in place during peak periods.
Restrictions apply in the height of the summer and dogs are not allowed on the beach between 1st July to 31st August during the hours of 10am-6pm.
St Ives itself is extremely dog-friendly and you will find a wealth of walks, dog-friendly restaurants and coves all easily accessible. For sandy adventures further afield, check out our guide on dog-friendly beaches in Cornwall.
Often referred to as Cornwall’s dazzling crown jewel, St Ives is home to a wealth of stunning beaches, all of which are just a short distance from Porthgwidden Beach itself and easy to reach on foot, including:
Looking for more inspiration on things to do near Porthgwidden Beach?
We’ve put together a list of our favourite things to do near Porthgwidden Beach whilst you’re in West Cornwall.
For avid hikers and outdoor enthusiasts, we highly recommend walking a stretch of the South West Coast Path. One of our favourite walks is from St Ives to Zennor (7.5 miles).
Be warned, the walk out of St Ives is relatively gentle, but it quickly becomes arduous with a lot of ascents and descents!
The wildlife is rich on this coastline, so keep your eyes peeled for peregrine falcons, shags, herring gulls and rock pipits. If you’re lucky, you may even spot a rare Cornish chough.
The north coast of Cornwall is jam packed with incredible walks, with something to suit ramblers of all ages and abilities.
For more walking inspiration, take a look at the following blogs:
Porthgwidden’s neighbouring beach, Porthmeor, provides the perfect environment to learn to surf. With good wind protection and varying amounts of Atlantic swell, you will find a wave to suit every ability.
St Ives Surf School, based on Porthmeor beach, is a great place to book a lesson. Boards and wetsuits can be hired from the beach if required.
Read our St Ives surfing guide for the full lowdown on all St Ives beaches with reputed surf breaks.
If you are looking for something a little gentler on the water, perhaps try stand up paddleboarding or kayaking in the more sheltered bays.
Stacked with independent art galleries and artist studios, St Ives is famed for its quality of light and has drawn painters since the beginning of the nineteenth century.
Regardless of whether you want to join a painting group or admire artwork from a distance, you will find the art scene brimming with activity.
Discover a handpicked selection of self-catering properties, situated just a short distance from Porthgwidden Beach, on our website. Book your holiday today!