Golden sandy beaches are the best kind of beaches. When in Newquay you have choice aplenty when it comes to sandy feet and salty toes. Some of Cornwall’s finest beaches area found near Newquay, providing you with a massive choice and the perfect place to relax.

Newquay has a massive selection of the finest beaches around the county, renowned for their cleanliness, surfability (think we just made that word up) and providing you with the perfect place to relax on your holiday in Cornwall with high safety levels and lifeguards on many of Newquay’s major beaches. From dog friendly beaches to those with rock pools and really good for families – Newquay has a beach for every occasion!

When on the beaches, make sure you listen to any instructions given by the lifeguards. It is also important to recognise and understand the 4 commonly seen flags on the UK’s beaches – see below.For more information, download the RNLI beach safety leaflet here.

Map of Newquay’s Beaches:

Newquay on the north Cornwall coast boasts a huge selection of golden sandy beaches. Some are excellent for rock pooling, while some are perfect for more extreme water sports – surfing, kite surfing, jet skiing.

Click on each icon on the map above to find out more about which beach is perfect for your time in Newquay, Cornwall.

When on the beaches, make sure you listen to any instructions given by the lifeguards. It is also important to recognise and understand the 4 commonly seen flags on the UK’s beaches – see below.For more information, download the RNLI beach safety leaflet here.

 Red Flag: Never enter the water when you see this flag, under any circumstances.
 Red and Yellow Flag: These show the lifeguarded areas between these flags.
 Checkered Flag: This area has been marked by use only for surfboards and kayaks. Never swim.
 Orange Sock: When the orange sock is flying this warns of Offshore Winds, never use inflatables!

Little Fistral beach sits north of Newquay’s famous Fistral Beach, and is only accessible at low tide. Little Fistral is a cute beach that lies to the west of Towan headland, a perfect place to retreat so you can marvel at the panoramic views from the white ‘lookout’ building that tops off Towan headland.

The beach has limited parking, although you can park at the nearby Fistral Beach car park – just a short walk away. Fistral Beach also has a restaurant, toilet facilities and watersports activities.

  • Lifeguards: Daily -May – September
  • Dogs allowed year-round
  • National Trust Parking available (5 mins walk to the beach). Follow the postcode TR8 5PF.
  • Toilets & Cafe available during high season (May – September)
  • Disabled access

Holywell Bay which can be found 5½ miles (8.9km) away from Newquay. The stream that meanders down from a wonderful backdrop of dunes to meet the sea provides a natural paddling area for children and it’s a great beach for families. Please note there are no food or toilet facilities on Holywell Bay beach. Located 1 ½ miles away is Cubert which has various shops and a post office including Holywell Bay Leisure park.

Known as Polly Joke Beach or Porth Joke Beach

  • No Lifeguard
  • Dogs allowed all year
  • No Parking
  • Access by walking from Holywell Bay, Crantock or hike from West Pentire.

To the west of Newquay, without road access is Porth Joke.This is a sandy beach nestling in an attractive, narrow cove between Kelsey Head and Pentire Point West headlands. This hide away and little-known beach is only 5 miles from the bustling town of Newquay, Cornwall. Porth Joke Beach is a north west-facing beach which at low tide reveals rock pools and caves. It sits between the more popular beaches of Holywell Bay and Crantock.

  • Lifeguards: Daily -May – September
  • Dogs allowed year-round
  • National Trust car parking free for members. Follow the postcode TR8 5SE.
  • Toilets
  • Disabled Access
  • Various cafe & restaurants

Crantock Beach lies on the River Gannel estuary and is a beautiful expanse of golden beach with good surf, ideal for all abilities. With extensive dunes, rock pools and caves to explore it is part of an extensive stretch of sands between the headlands of Pentire and West Pentire, with Crantock situated at the mouth of the River Gannel. Access to the beach is via steep dunes. Be aware the right hand side of the beach meets the River Gannel estuary so to avoid resulting currents it is advisable to bathe towards the left of this lovely bay. Crantock beach is a 15 minute drive from Newquay Town Centre or 45 minute walk from the town centre, buses run regularly to and from.

  • Limited off street parking
  • Dogs allowed all year
  • Popular as a horse riding trail

Be safe – Check the tide timetable, plan a walk around the estuary avoiding high tide!

The Gannel Estuary is tidal river which can be explored during low tide. This silted estuary used to be popular as a river channel on incoming tide bringing in coal, wood and sand to be distributed. You can find The Gannel as you exit Newquay along the link road heading towards Mount Wise. There is limited parking but the Estuary is an easy walk from town and also forms the starting point of the Newquay to Crantock circular walk. Be safe – buya tide timetable, plan a walk around the estuary avoiding high tide!

Cornish Meaning:  Porth Maugan or St Mawgan’s cove meaning cove of the Gluvian river

  • Lifeguards: Daily-May – September
  • Dogs allowed year-round
  • Parking available in Mawgan Porth on the beach.
  • Disabled Access
  • Equipment hire
  • Toilets
  • Various Cafe and restaurants

Some 5.5 miles (8.9km) out of Newquay towards the North which follows onto Wadebridge, this large expanse of pale golden sand at Mawgan Porth is framed by towering cliffs and sand dunes and offers both space and seclusion with a host of local shops and food outlets. During low tide there are a number of caves and rock outcrops that are accessible. On the south side of the beach there is a river that flows out to the sea. Mawgan Porth is another European Designated beach and has achieved the highest UK standard for bathing water quality.

On the south side of the beach at certain tides you can get to a secluded beach called Beacon Cove. This is a tiny sandy beach sheltered on either side by steep cliffs. Access by a rough steep track. There are no facilities on this beach and please check the tide timetables for incoming tides.

Also known as Tregurrian Beach

  • Lifeguards: Daily-May – September including Easter weekend
  • Dogs allowed year-round
  • Parking available at Watergate Bay(400 Spaces). For parking information click here.
  • Coach Parking available
  • A European designated beach for the highest standard of water quality
  • Variety of restaurants and Cafe’s
  • Disabled access
  • Toilets
  • Water sport equipment hire

Tregurrian Beach based at Watergate Bay spans two miles of golden sands, situated 3 miles from the town centre of Newquay, a 15minute drive or a 45minute walk. The wide expanses of sand and proximity to Newquay make Watergate Bay a popular destination for families. The bay’s Atlantic swells make it equally popular with water sports enthusiasts, and the beach hosts annual surfing events. The beach is backed by steep cliffs and is flanked north and south by Stem Point and Trevelgue Head respectively. Watergate Bay is normally quieter than those beaches closer to Newquay however during the summer months this can change.

  • No lifeguard present
  • Dogs allowed year-round
  • Important to check local tide times before visiting
  • Parking available on nearby Porth beach. For parking information click here.

Secluded around the corner from Porth Beach the long walk down steep steps at Whipsiderry Beach are a small price to pay for the quieter location with no facilities it’s a small peaceful beach which can only be visited during low tide, please be warned to return back up to Porth as the high tide can cut off the stairs.

Porth Beach, Newquay

Cornish Meaning: Cove

  • Lifeguards: May – September
  • Dog ban applies Easter day until 1st October
  • Parking Available on Beach (Tide dependant spaces). For parking information click here.
  • Disabled Access
  • Toilet Facilities
  • Refreshment stands and shop available during the summer
  • On the beach pub

Porth is a west-facing beach in a long, narrow cove, between Lusty Glaze and Watergate Bay beaches which looks towards Newquay Bay and the Headland. Even at high tide, enough of the exposed beach remains to enjoy. Popular with visitors with walking difficulties, Porth Beach is level with the road and allows some parking on the sands. It’s ideal for families, offering safe bathing and a sheltered location away from the busyness of the town centre which is just a 5minute drive or 25 minute walk.

Cornish Meaning: Lostyn Glas, meaning a place to view blue boats

  • Lifeguards: From May till September (Check Local Info)
  • Dog ban applies 31st May until 30th September
  • Parking: Lusty Glaze Car Park opposite to the beach (450 spaces)
  • Toilet & Shower Facilities
  • Beach Huts available for hire
  • Surf Hire
  • Beach-side restaurant and takeaway
  • European designated beach for bathing water quality

The most eastern of the four beaches Lusty Glaze (the others being Great Western, Tolcarne and Towan Beach) and facing North West. Lusty Glaze’s unique beachside complex can be reached by a steep flight of steps. A uniquely privately owned beach that’s open to all. This lovely horseshoe-shaped cove offers an almost infinite selection of exciting water, cliff and land based activities making it a safe family friendly environment. Lust Glaze also plays host to an increasing list of live music events

Checkout the events planned to take place on Lusty Glaze this year.

Cornish Meaning: Talkarn ‘Hole in the Rock’

  • Lifeguards: Daily-Mid May – End of September
  • Dog ban applies 1st May until 30th September
  • Limited parking by beach. Nearby parking on Cliff Road and side roads.
  • Nearest Pay Parking: Manor Car Park (246 spaces). For parking information click here.
  • Beach huts available to hire on a long term basis.
  • Surf Hire
  • Disabled Access

Following on from Great Western Beach which can be walked right from Towan Beach during low tide if you walk further along Cliff Road for steps or a steep winding slope you’ll find Tolcarne Beach, with its brightly painted beach huts. This crescent shaped bay offers more than just golden sand and easy swimming. With plenty of organised activities, surf schools with BSA qualified instructors and beach hire amenities.

great western beach newquay

At low tide beach you can walk from Towan Beach to reach Great Western Beach but when the tide is high, this area can be approached from Cliff Road down a steep slope located next to the Great Western Hotel. Facilities include a café, public toilets, deckchairs, body boards and windbreaks are also available at this beach.

towan beach the most central beach to newquay

Facilities at Towan Beach, Newquay

Cornish Translation: Tewyn meaning Sand Dunes

    • Lifeguards: Mid May – September including Easter weekend
    • Dogs allowed year-round
    • Nearest Pay Parking: Manor Car Park (246 spaces). For parking information click here.
    • Various restaurants and cafe’s close by
    • Toilet Facilities close by
    • Deck Chair hire available from Blue Reef Aquarium
    • Disabled Access

Towan Beach is the western-most of the four ajoining beaches (the others being Great Western, Tolcarne and Lusty Glaze) in Newquay, which combine at low tide to cover over a mile of family-friendly sand that holds several little bathing pools for the family. Of the four beaches, the north-facing Towan Beach is situated closest to Newquay town centre. Accessed by steps down from the Killacourt or via a short but steep incline at the end of Beach Road. It is also where you will find Newquay’s most photographed landmark – The Island, nestled just off the coast. The Island’s former owners were famous scientist Sir Oliver Lodge.

  • No lifeguard present
  • Dogs allowed year-round
  • Limited parking at Harbour Beach (31 spaces). For parking information click here.
  • Various restaurants and cafe’s close by
  • Toilet Facilities

The Harbour Beach is the smallest in Newquay and is only accessible during low tide when you can watch as the the catch of the day arrives at the busy working harbour. Families can enjoy piece of mind as the harbour provides north east facing shelter for bathing. The RNLI also launch their sea rescues so be prepared to see the volunteer crew leap into a Newquay lifeboat. To the east of the harbour wall is Towan Beach. During peak seasons boat trips are available from the harbour.

Fistral Beach is a critically acclaimed beach in Newquay, Cornwall

Fistral Beach is one of the top UK beaches and probably the most well known.

Cornish Translation: Porth an Vystel, meaning ‘cove of the foul water’.

  • Dogs allowed year-round
  • Pay and Display nearby at Fistral Beach (200 spaces). 20 minutes free parking. For parking information click here.
  • Lifeguards: Daily from May – September including Easter weekend. Voluntary Lifeguards during winter weekends.
  • Various restaurants and cafe’s
  • Surf Equipment hire and lessons.
  • Shower & Toilet facilities.
  • Fistral Beach is a European Designated beach for European Water Quality Standards.
  • Live Music & Events
  • Disabled Access

Fistral, perhaps the UK’s most famous beach, is split between North and South Fistral. Fistral Beach is west-facing, exposing it to Atlantic swells, ensuring consistent waves suitable for surfing. The Cribbar, at the north end of the beach, causes waves to break when the swell is high. It is considered to be Cornwall’s “big wave” location with wave faces as high as 40 feet (12m).The UK’s most famous surfing location, Fistral Beach hosts many national and international surfing competitions which draw thousands of visitors to the beach.

Make sure to check our surf report to see the latest tidal information.

Check what events are taking place on Fistral this year on our What’s On Calendar.