Where better to visit over the summer months than Cornwall? A haven of beautiful beaches, stunning waters, picturesque villages, fascinating English heritage sites… and of course, Cornish pasties!
We’ve rounded up 11 quintessentially British dog-friendly days out in Cornwall where you can explore, indulge and soak up the sunshine til your heart’s content.
Tintagel Castle is a clifftop castle steeped in intriguing history and sporting incredible views over the sea and landscape below.
Enter this 13th-century castle through the medieval gates, and prepare to be mesmerized by captivating views and historic tales of wonder.
The history of Tintagel Castle remains somewhat of a mystery, but we do know that it was a site of great importance for trade. Luxury glassware and pottery were imported here from the Mediterranean, and it’s thought they were traded for tin, a desirable commodity at the time.
We cannot tell the tale of Tintagel Castle without including reference to the legend of King Arthur and Merlin, the magician. Writer Geoffrey of Monmouth named Tintagel as the birthplace of King Arthur in his History of the Kings of Britain chronicles.
Dogs are welcome at Tintagel Castle, but they must remain on leads to keep them safe from the steep cliff edges.
Top tip: Wear comfy shoes as there are a lot of steps and steep climbs!
Address: Castle Road, Tintagel, Cornwall, PL34 0HE
Pendennis Castle is a coastal fortress built by King Henry VIII to defend Cornwall from foreign invasion since Tudor times. Situated upon the headlands and stretching out to sea, this English Heritage site takes you back in time.
Discover incredible coastal views, weapons of defence through the ages, and tunnels of historical curiosity. It’s an astounding slice of history that your dog is welcome to join you for. Dogs are welcome on lead both inside the castle and on the grounds.
Top Tip: Book a tour to reveal the rich history of Pendennis Castle
Address: Falmouth, Cornwall, TR11 4LP
Wheal Coates tin mine is a UNESCO World Heritage site cared for by the National Trust. Situated just a short clifftop walk away from St. Agnes, an area of outstanding natural beauty, you will discover the remains of the Towanroath engine house.
St. Agnes head is dog-friendly all year round, so you can enjoy a clifftop walk before experiencing the dramatic ruins of Wheal Coats tin mine.
For a dog-friendly beach, Trevaunance Cove is dog-friendly all year round and is approx 8 minutes drive away or a 40-minute walk.
Top tip: Stay a little longer and enjoy a remarkable sunset on a clear day.
Address: Wheal Coates Car Park, Beacon Dr, Saint Agnes TR5 0NU
All aboard! Your dog can join you aboard this old-fashioned steam train for a journey through beautiful Cornish countryside. The main station building at Bodmin General has been restored to give a feel of the 1950s, so you can truly travel back in time.
Bodmin is an incredibly dog-friendly place to visit. Even the local library and town museum allow our four-legged friends to explore.
There are many places to visit nearby, from Bodmin town centre to Cardinham Woods or, if you’re feeling very energetic, the 17 mile Camel Trail!
Top tip: Combine with a visit to Bodmin Beacon Nature Reserve or National Trust’s Lanhydrock Estate
Address: General Station, Harleigh Rd, Bodmin PL31 1AQ
Nose around this quintessentially English Country house on the Lanhydrock Estate. Coupled with riverside walks, ancient woodlands, and a peek inside Victorian life, this is a beautiful classically British day out.
Dogs are not allowed inside the house itself, but the grounds are utterly glorious and very dog-friendly! The Victorians were big fans of our canine companions, after all.
From gentle strolls to epic hikes, there are routes to please every visitor (and their dog!)
The woodland floor is awash with bluebells in spring, and the tranquil River Fowey is just beautiful. The Lanhydrock swimming pool walk takes you over a stream and through tree-lined paths to discover a Victorian Swimming Pool which is now teeming with wildlife rather than humans!
Top Tip: Lanhydrock is very cycle-friendly. Bring your bikes and take to the trails!
Address: Lanhydrock Estate, B3268, Bodmin PL30 4AB
Heartlands is a Cornish Mining World Heritage site in Redruth.
Once upon a time, tin was the most sought metal on earth, and the mining sites of Cornwall are now given the same cultural recognition as sites such as the Taj Mahal and Machu Picchu.
Heartlands is completely free to visit and houses a mining museum, enlightening exhibitions, and 19 acres of glorious grounds to revel in.
Supremely dog-friendly, dogs are allowed to explore heartlands in its entirity except for the kid’s soft play and adventure playground areas.
Nestled within the Cornwall area of outstanding natural beauty is Boscastle. While not much remains of the original castle, the natural harbour and fishing village is an idyllic place to visit.
Home to many a traditional tea room, you can indulge in cream teas, scones with clotted cornish cream and jam,
Or enjoy a stunning walk to the Valency Valley along the cliffs above the medieval harbour. This clifftop and woodland walk is part of the South West Coastal Path and is a haven for wildlife lovers and birdwatchers.
Keep your eyes peeled for peregrine, gannet, and kestrel, and if you’re fortunate with the tide, you may even see the famous blowhole spouting water! In the summer, the valley meadows are full of wildflowers and rare butterfly species. What better place to rest and enjoy nature after a nice long dog walk.
Top Tip: Check the tide times for your best chance of catching the blowhole in all its magical glory.
Address: Boscastle, Cornwall, PL35 0HD
The camel trail is a 17-mile long trail along an old disused rail line linking
Wenfordbridge, Bodmin, Wadebridge, and Padstow. It’s mainly traffic-free and mostly flat, so ideal for dog walkers and cyclists alike.
You can even hire a trailer if you’d like to cycle with your dog, so they can take regular rest breaks while you do the hard pedal work!
There are various shorter pathways if 17 miles fills you with dread. The path from Padstow to Wadebridge is 5.5 miles and gives you stunning views of the camel estuary.
Top Tip: Stop off for fish and chips courtesy of Rick Stein at Padstow
Godolphin is an ancient 500-acre estate complete with medieval gardens, woodlands, a historic house, and fields aplenty.
The 16th-century garden and estate are rich in history and wildlife. Godolphin was quite literally built on top of the minerals that funded its existence. The woodlands retain a mysterious landscape from years of mining, and elsewhere on the estate, you can discover the remains of the Godolphin family mine.
Visit Godolphin hill during your visit and enjoy stunning views of St Ives Bay and St Michael’s Mount.
Dogs are welcome throughout the Godolphin grounds, including the tea room. The only place your dog cannot visit is the house itself.
Top tip: Stop off at the Piggery tea room for a break and perhaps some Cornish ice cream!
Address: Godolphin Cross, Helston, Cornwall, TR13 9RE
What a special place to explore. The Lost Gardens were once known as the famed Heligan estate until, at the outset of World War I, they disappeared.
Many of the groundsmen and women were drafted into the trenches, and slowly ivy and brambles buried the beautiful gardens and grounds.
It’s now been restored to glory and is home to 200 acres of splendid history, beauty, and mystery. A celebration of the ordinary people who made the gardens great before departing for the Great War.
Dogs are very welcome at the Lost Gardens of Heligan but must remain on lead to protect the wildlife and rare livestock that roam.
Explore the Northern Gardens, the Jungle, and the Hide. Keep your eyes peeled for some impressive sculptures along woodland walk for a touch of magic.
Top Tip: Take your dog for a ramble through the epic farmlands
Address: The Lost Gardens of Heligan, Pentewan, St.Austell, Cornwall, PL26 6EN
Discover this ancient settlement that dates back to the Iron Age. Surrounded by beautiful countryside, you will find round huts which remain mostly intact. Imagine what life was like for the people that lived here many moons ago.
As well as a glimpse into ancient history, the site is now home to much flora and fauna. and many birds.
Top tip: Pick up a guide book from the shop for a real taste of the history of this ancient village
Address: Newmill, Penzance, Cornwall, TR20 8XA
This is the first in a series of blogs designed to help you discover dog-friendly days out across England that you can thoroughly enjoy with your canine companion.
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And before you go, we’ve got a handy checklist of all the essentials to pack for your dog-friendly staycation.
We hope you have a wonderful time together, wherever you go!