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10 June 2021

St Ives’ Beaches

by Nick McIvor

St Ives has drawn visitors for centuries. From Irish saints in the fifth century. Artists in the nineteenth century. And in more recent years people visiting for holidays from around the UK and beyond. One of St Ives many attractions is its beaches. They are beautiful and each has its own charm, so here’s the lowdown on the beaches in St Ives and a few gems close by.

Porthmeor Beach

The first beach in the journey along St Ives Bay is Porthmeor Beach. And it’s a good one. In fact, it’s a Blue Flag one. It’s a lovely long beach with the Island to the east, Tate St Ives behind, and a rocky headland to the west. It’s the most exposed beach in St Ives making it a popular choice for surfers of all abilities, swimmers, and families.

Dear dogs: Between 15th May to 30th September this is also a no-no between 10 am to 6 pm. The rest of the year it’s all yours though.

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Porthgwidden Beach

Facing east across St Ives Bay to Three Mile Beach, Porthgwidden Beach is a lovely, sandy cove. Sheltered to the north by the Island with a backdrop of beach huts and the Porthgwidden Beach Café, this is a family favourite.

Dear dogs: In July and August this is a total no-no between 10 am to 6 pm. The rest of the year it’s all yours.

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Bamaluz Beach

This small beach located between the harbour and Porthgwidden Beach is often missed by most visitors looking for the more famous beaches in St Ives, but it’s great for rock pooling.

Dear dogs: This is all yours, all year round. It’s the only one in St Ives that is.

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Harbour Beach

This is where to paddle, enjoy exceptional Cornish ice cream, and take in the ebb and flow of this go-to town. It’s still a working harbour, so fishing boats are come and go in all weathers. At low tide, the beach stretches out beyond the harbour walls and makes for a lovely sun trap. Just watch out for the resident seagulls and keep your fish and chips close. They love an unsuspecting visitor.

Dear dogs: Between 1st July to 31 August it’s a no go from 10 am until 6 pm. The rest of the year, knock yourself out.

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Porthminster Beach

With a wooded headland to its Carbis Bay side and St Ives Harbour to the other, this crescent-shaped beach is one of Cornwall’s best. Being sheltered, the turquoise waters are calm and paddle-friendly. Facilities are great here too, including one of our favourites in the area – The Porthminster Beach Café (more on this little gem in the places to eat nearby blog).

Dear dogs: Between 15th May to 30th September this is a total no-no between 10 am to 6 pm. The rest of the year it’s all yours.

View on a map

Beaches near St Ives

Carbis Bay Beach

Carbis Bay is an unbelievable Blue Flag beauty. The headland at either end of the bay shelters the beach from the ravages of the surf and creates a micro-climate where sub-tropical plants flourish. It looks and feels like the Med. The calm waters are perfect for families with young children keen to paddle in the Atlantic. There are plenty of great facilities here too.

Dear dogs: Check the sign-in case this changes, but you can’t walkies between 10 am to 6 pm from 15th May to 30th September. And the rest of the year whenever you want.

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Porthkidney Beach

This beach stretches nearly a mile out to sea at low tide and is backed by dunes and West Cornwall Golf Club (duck if you hear the shout “fore”). Thanks to its unusual dune system and the nearby RSPB managed reserve, this beach is a designated Site for Special Scientific Interest. It’s northern end, Hawk’s Point, is a popular but fickle surf spot.

Dear dogs: Go for it. It’s yours all year round

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More about Three Mile Beach

Three Mile Beach is a collection of 15 luxury self-catering 2, 3, and 4 bedroom beach houses in the wilds of St Ives Bay, Cornwall.

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