15 Best Beaches In Newquay, Cornwall

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Newquay is renowned as the surfing capital of Cornwall, so prepared to be thrilled. Newquay is blessed with some of the best beaches in the UK, and that’s why it’s popular with locals and tourists. The beautiful beaches in Newquay and the picturesque coastal scenery made Newquay Cornwall’s premier resort. 

Newquay beaches boasting more than seven miles of golden sands are some of the best and busiest in the UK. The beaches in Newquay are distinguished by magnificent variety, reliable, accessible surf, and are primarily within walking distance from the town center. 

This town is famous for the surfing championships held at Fistral beach, but there is much more to do on the Newquay beaches. Newquay offers a wide range of options, but here are 15 of the best beaches in Newquay.

Most Popular Beach In Newquay, Cornwall

Fistral Beach


This is no doubt the most popular beach in Newquay and Cornwall for surfing. Fistral is only a few miles from Newquay, blessed with fine golden sand and rugged hills. The beach attracts enthusiast surfers from all over the world because of its impressive waves. 

The long stretch of sandy beach is also possibly the largest in Newquay. It is divided into three parts: South Fistral, the main beach, and little Fistral. Little Fistral is on the beach’s northern end and is only really there at low tides.

The epic waves on this beach result from the two headlands (Headlands of Pentire and Towan) to the north and south that attract powerful hollow waves. You can hire equipment from the surf center on the beach, and if you’re interested in learning how to surf, the Fistral Beach Surf School is at your service. 

Facilities are available on this beach, and a collection of restaurants, cafes, and pubs are at the far end of the beach for you to get food and drinks. Fistral is also one of the dog-friendly beaches in Newquay, as dogs are allowed all year round. 


Best Newquay Beaches For Families

Harbour Beach

Harbour beach is Newquay’s smallest beach; as the name suggests, it is a sheltered beach. The beach is easily accessible and offers safe swimming. It is popular with families as there is no surfing here, so it doesn’t get as busy as other Newquay beaches. 

The vast sweep of golden sand is suitable for sandcastles, building, and sunbathing. Boat trips leave Harbour beach in the summer, and shops and cafes are nearby.

The harbor scenes of this beach make it a picture-perfect spot. You can enjoy a day out by the beach with your family while your dog tags along, as dogs are permitted throughout the year. 

Tolcarne Beach

Tolcarne is nestled between the Great Western and Lusty Glaze and sheltered on three sides by tall cliffs. It offers excellent views of the harbor and headland. The fine golden sand, gentle surf, and lots of space for beach activities make Tolcarne of the best beaches in Newquay for families.  

Getting to this beach requires some work as you need to climb down the high cliffs, but it is worth it because you will be rewarded with a gorgeous beach.

Colorful beach huts line the beach, which are suitable for changing and keeping your belongings. There is a sunbathing platform excellent for lounging in the summer sun.

Facilities available are cafes, shops, a surfing center, and restaurants. Dogs are not welcome on this beach.  

Lusty Glaze Beach


Lusty Glaze beach is a privately-owned beach opened to the public. It has a spectacular horseshoe-shaped cove, and high cliffs naturally shelter it. It is a favorite for families because of its safe surfs and many facilities, including a creche and The Adventure center, which provides everything from jet skiing to kiteboarding. 

If you are in for some adventure and willing to learn how to surf, Lusty glaze is home to the headquarter of the National Lifeguard and Rescue Training center, which is known for training in surf lifesaving. 

This is one of the beaches in Newquay with its own café where you can grab something refreshing while taking in the sea air.  

Crantock Beach

Crantock beach is part of a vast expanse of fine golden sand between Pentire and West Pentire headlands. High cliffs at the southern end sheltered the beach from the wind. Most of the sandy beach is backed by high dunes. It has rockpools and caves at the mouth of the River Gannel.   

Crantock is one of the many dog-friendly beaches in Newquay, so you can bring your furry friends along to play. It feels like a secluded beach, perfect for a family day by the sea. 

Kids can explore the rock pools, play in the sand and build sandcastles. The crystal-clear blue water is excellent for swimming, surfing, kayaking, and fishing. 

Porth Beach


Porth beach is popular with families because of its vast stretch of fine sand, which is ideal for children to play and build sandcastles. The beach is situated on the north coast of Cornwall between the four Newquay beaches in town and Watergate Bay. 

The beach is set in a deep inlet which provides a degree of shelter from the north coast’s winds. Like most Newquay beaches, it is an excellent surf spot, but it is worth noting that surfing is not allowed during summers.

You can enjoy your time on this beach swimming, sunbathing and taking in the sea air. Dogs are banned from May to September. 

Holywell Bay


Holywell is a mile-long sandy beach about six miles west of Newquay. The beach retained its unspoiled rural backdrop despite being close to town. A distinctive feature of Holywell is the iconic Gull Rocks that spring out of the coast. 

Although it doesn’t get as busy as the main Newquay beaches, Holywell gets quite busy during summer. The expanse of golden sand is suitable for a family day by the beach. Kids can explore the sand dunes and rock pools, or bring their sandcastle building kit and play in the sand.

The blue flag water is suitable for swimming and bathing. Like other Newquay beaches, you can catch some surf here, and an 18-hole golf course overlooks the beach.  

Best Newquay Beaches For Watersports

Watergate Bay Beach

Watergate bay is significant for its golden sands that stretch up to two miles at low tides and steep cliffs. It picks up some Atlantic swells, which makes it popular with surfers. Given the size of the beach, there is enough space for everyone though it gets bustling sometimes. 

There are beach huts and deck chairs for hire on the beach. Cafes, restaurants, and shops are available on the beach for you to grab food and drinks. 

Kids can play and run on the beach; the fine golden sand is also perfect for building sandcastles. You can come with your dogs as dogs are welcome all year round. 

Great Western Beach

Great Western beach is a favorite for surfers and families. Although it is near the center of Newquay, it is still one of the quieter Newquay beaches. If you want to escape from the remaining busy beaches in Newquay, head to Great Western beach. 

Caves on high cliffs offer many rock pools for kids to explore. The beach is not suitable for sunbathing as the high cliffs tower over the beach and cast a shadow over the beach later in the afternoon.

Beginner surfers will enjoy playing out in the waves because the currents here are not that strong.

A surf school is open on the beach if you are interested in surfing lessons.

Deck chairs and surfboards are available for hire on the beach. You can enjoy swimming, playing beach games, building sandcastles, and much more on this beach.

Your furry friends can come along as they are welcome all year round. Bring along a dog leash stake if you want to keep them close as you rest under the sun.

Penhale Sands Beach

Penhale Sands is found in a Special Area of Conservation, and it joins with Perranporth beach to form a magnificent three-mile stretch of golden sands.

The beach is backed by sand dunes and is home to the ruins of St Piran’s oratory. The beach is easily accessible, so it gets really busy. Though the beach can get busy, it absorbs the largest crowd because of its size. 

Penhale Sands is one of the best beaches in Newquay for watersports because it tends to pick up more waves, especially at the far end known as “Penhale corner.” It is suitable for canoeing, diving, kayaking, surfing, swimming, kitesurfing, snorkeling, and fishing.  

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Other Famous Newquay Beaches

Towan Beach

This is one of the most popular beaches in Newquay, all thanks to its easy access. It is located right in the town center, so it gets swamped here, especially during summer. There are so many activities to enjoy on this beach, so prepare to have a swell time. 

The waves here tend to be smaller, making it perfect for newbies surfer. The beautiful blue water is ideal for swimming. You can enjoy many activities here, including surfing, canoeing, bodyboarding, diving, and snorkeling. Kids can run around and build sandcastles on this beach.

It is an excellent spot for people with mobility issues as there are beach wheelchairs for hire. Facilities are available, and you have access to many shops, cafes, and restaurants because of the location of this beach. 

After spending time on the beach, you can even head to Blue Reef Aquarium to look at marine life.  

Mawgan Porth Beach

Mawgan Porth is a sandy beach about four miles from Newquay, ideal for escaping the crowds from the main Newquay Beaches while still enjoying the best beach experience.

High cliffs shelter the beach on both sides, and there is plenty of sand to build sandcastles at low tide. Mawgan Porth is a favorite with families and surfers.

There are many rock pools, caves, and a large stream on the beach’s southern end, which kids can explore. Facilities have everything you would need, including disabled access. The clear blue water is suitable for swimming. 

Perranporth Beach (Perran Sands)

Perranporth is one of the most famous and best beaches in Newquay and Cornwall. The beach features a vast expanse of golden sand, great surf, and everything you would expect from a beach, including a bar on a beach. The Watering Hole is a relaxed bar that hosts extraordinary events throughout the year.  

The beach backs directly to the village, making access to the beach easy; this is one of the many reasons it is popular. At low tides, the beach is massive as it extends from Droskyn Point to Penhale Point, which is over two miles. 

At the beach’s southern end, there are some interesting rock formations and a chapel rock in the middle of the beach with its little tidal bathing pool. 

Although Perranporth beach gets really busy during summer, there is enough space for everyone. Dogs are allowed all year round but with rules in place. 


Hidden Gem Beaches In Newquay

Whipsiderry Beach

Renowned for being one of the top 20 best European beaches in the Sunday Times. It is snuggled between Watergate Bay and Porth beach and is one of the most beautiful hidden gem beaches in Newquay. 

Unlike other Newquay beaches, there are no facilities here, and access is via a flight of cliff-hugging stairs which may put so many people off. But if you’re an adventurer, you need to visit this beach as you will be rewarded with a stunning beach with a collection of rock pools and caves to explore. 

The sheltered nature of the cove and the fine sand make it an ideal sunbathing spot. You can also bring a portable beach tent if you want to relax in the shade. Dogs are welcome all year round so remember to take your furry friend along for an adventure. 

Porth Joke Beach


Porth Joke, also called Polly beach, is in a remote location, but it is worth the extra walk. The unspoiled sandy beach is located in a deep cove between headlands, with Crantock beach north and Hollywell Bay south. 

This beautiful Newquay beach offers a relatively peaceful feeling. During spring and summer, wildflowers add a burst of color to cliffs. You won’t have any dull moments on this beach as there are rockpools and caves to explore, and the exciting waves are excellent for surfing.

This is another one of the dog friendly beaches in Newquay. Furry companions are allowed throughout the year. There are no facilities on the beach, but there are facilities nearby. 

Where To Stay In Newquay

The Quies

This is a 4-star hotel located just 2 minutes from the town center and the beach. It features a bar, games room, and a sun terrace. The rooms are stylishly decorated with sea views. 

A full English and Continental breakfast are offered daily in the pleasant dining room, and secure indoor storage is available for surfboards and fishing equipment.  

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The Esplanade Hotel

This luxury hotel overlooks the Fistral beach and offers stunning Atlantic views. The hotel features an indoor child-friendly pool, a spa bath, and a sauna.

Local Cornish ales and ciders are served in the hotel’s Pebbles Bar. Full English and continental breakfasts are served in the restaurant with Atlantic Ocean views. The Quiksilver Surf School is right in this hotel, and all guests get discounted surf lessons. 

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OYO Minerva Guest house

This elegant hotel is less than a 2-minute walk from the beach. A bar and a games room with a billiards table and dartboard are available at this hotel. The accommodation is surrounded by restaurants and shops and is close to attraction centers, including the Blue Reef Aquarium, Newquay Zoo, and Newquay activity center.  

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Enjoying The Best Beaches In Newquay

If you don’t mind the crowd, Newquay is a fantastic UK beach vacation destination for families and lovers. It offers some of the best beaches in Cornwall. You can always count on Newquay beaches for a fun time, especially because the hitting waves are perfect for surfing. 

The long sandy beaches in Newquay are ready and waiting to provide an unforgettable experience full of swimming, sandcastles, sunbathing, and picnics. It is one of the reasons why Cornwall is a popular destination for UK family holidays.

Whichever of the beaches in Newquay you choose to explore, you are in for a wonderful experience. 



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Welcome To NomadsUnveiled
This is Rax. For over a decade, I have traveled to over 60 countries - from a budget backpacker to a business traveler, expat and then a digital nomad. You can find insights and perspectives from myself and other world travelers that will inspire your journey of discovery.


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