Looking for family friendly holidays ideas for the February half term? If you are searching for inspiration and aren’t sure what to do, then why not consider packing the family up and making the trip to St Ives.

Located in Cornwall, this stunning seaside town is a hidden gem, with incredible beaches, award winning restaurants, boutique shops, galleries and a multitude of outdoor and indoor activities for all ages to enjoy.

So what does Cornwall and St Ives have to offer this February half term?

World class beaches – picture deserted golden sands, azure waters, rocky headlands and foamy wavesand your family running along them! St Ives boasts Porthminster, Porthmeor, Porthgwidden, Bamaluz, Harbour Beach, Carbis Bay Beach, Porthkidney Sands and multitude of coves to explore. For the more adventurous perhaps enjoy a day surfing or coasteering with St Ives Surf School, based on Porthmeor or Porthminster beaches.

Beach in Cornwall

Water water everywhere – you can’t go far in Cornwall without being by the sea, whether it is rock pooling, or crabbing off a pier or more adventurous water sports and activities then there is somewhere in Cornwall that will cater to all your needs.

Castles and Dragons – Cornwall is an ancient community which has had prominence through history and it boasts castles and dwellings that have remained throughout the ages from the Bronze Age through to the present day. Explore these fascinating places such as Chysauster Bronze Age village, Pendennis Castle, St Mawes Castle, Llanhydrock House and Gardens, Tintagel with its Arthurian legends and St Micheals Mount with a stunning monastery and home on top of it’s own tidal island.

13th – 17th February 2017 (10.30am – 3.30pm)

Step back in time over 400 years and imagine life in the Tudor fort of Pendennis this half term.  Warm up by the roaring fire in the castle keep as you help the Tudor cooks to prepare a feast for the banquet before you step outside to try your hand at sword drills and jousting.

English Heritage members: free/ Adult: £7.90 Child: 5 – 15 years: £4.70 Concession: £7/ Family: £20.50

Expand your horizons – Do you fancy planning your first mission to space this February half -term and getting up close to our solar systems amazing stars and planets?  There’s now an actual space portal in Falmouth!  Or perhaps visit the futuristic biomes at the Eden Project, enjoy the rainforest or perhaps a trip down the largest zip wire in the UK, or maybe ice skate on their purpose built winter rink or maybe let you imagination run wild with Story Fest over the half term.

Visit the National Maritime Museum in Falmouth and voyage through space with Space Odyssey Plane.

1 Feb 2017 to 19 Feb 2017: Tickets: Adults: £12 Children (under 18s): £5 Under 5s: Free

Eden Project near St Austell: Family tickets – £69 save 10% if you buy in advance online.

Eden Project

Get Creative – St Ives is renowned for its quality of light and centre for the boho art scene, enjoy a day exploring the galleries and shops in and around St Ives cobbled streets or the Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden is an unmissable spot and makes for an unforgettable afternoon. The Barnoon Workshop offers activities which are inspired by the beautiful surroundings from felt making, to beach mosaics and fine art workshops.

Alternatively, the town of St Ives itself holds myriad charms, with quaint shopping, great bars and friendly nightlife that make it an ideal place to share a romantic holiday.

At Carbis Bay Holidays, we’re proud to offer memorable St Ives holidays to thousands of families every year in over 150 luxury self-catering coastal properties. Why not consider a self-catering holiday in Cornwall? A family holiday to Cornwall does away with the stresses of going abroad, is often easier on the pocket and for many becomes a yearly pilgrimage and something to remember for generations.

By: Jessica Colliver On:8th February 2017
Categories:Blog,Family Friendly

Cornwall has some of the best beaches around and there are plenty that welcome our four legged friends. Check out our map of the top dog friendly beaches in Cornwall:

Top dog friendly beachs

If you’re thinking of taking a trip to Cornwall with your pooch, check out our Dog Friendly Holidays in Cornwall and St Ives page and find out about the best eateries, days out, and how we can make your stay with us unforgettable.

By: Jessica Colliver On:27th January 2017
Categories:Blog,Dog Friendly,Holiday Ideas

With the beautiful seaside town of St Ives on your doorstep, why not leave your car at your home from home for the day, or even the week? With a plethora of activities and pursuits within easy reach, you can do your bit for the environment and for your back pocket.

Here are five of our top tips for things to do in and around St Ives:

Family Fun

Pack up a picnic or order a scrumptious hamper from The Allotment Deli in St Ives and head down to the beach. Take inspiration from what you can find on our stunning Cornish beaches and have a sand sculpture competition, loser buys the ice creams!

Explorers

Take the 300 ‘Cornwall Explorer’ open top, double decker bus around the West Cornwall peninsula. Jumping on and off as much as you like, visiting Lands End, Sennen, Porthcurno and many other quaint Cornish villages. You will get the chance to peep over hedgerows and view this spectacular corner of Cornwall like never before.

Art Lovers

It’s impossible to come to St Ives without taking in some of its famous art. Why not follow the art trail around the town, including the Tate St Ives, Barbara Hepworth Museum and Leach Pottery. There is also a great array of free galleries to pop in and out of, and if all this art has inspired you, how about joining one of the art classes run by the St Ives Art Club?

Adventurers

The great rock pool safari!  Pack your bucket, net and swimming cossie and jump on the train to Penzance.  Walk around the harbour stopping off at Bag O Rags, a pirate ship moored in the Harbour.  A minute’s walk away is Battery Rocks, at low tide there is some fantastic rock pooling to be had. Check out our wildlife section on our website to see what species to lookout for. During the summer months the saltwater filled Jubilee swimming pool is open, located next to the rocks, with a very popular café which offers luscious lunches.

Adrenalin Junkies

St Ives is home to the popular surf beach: Porthmeor.  This amazing stretch of golden sand offers a surf school, cafe and restaurant, and throughout the summer season is supervised by RNLI Lifeguards.  Zip up your wet-suit and head into the surf, then round off the day by watching the unbelievable red sunset with a glass of wine and beach barbecue.

St Ives and Carbis Bay offer a wide range of holiday cottages in West Cornwall, ideal for a car free holiday.  First Great Western offering frequent trains directly into nearby St Erth and often to Carbis Bay and St Ives itself. 

By: Amanda O'Toole On:17th June 2016
Categories:Local Area,Things to Do

Holidays should be crammed with unique and memorable experiences. Whether you’re on honeymoon, celebrating a landmark birthday or on a family adventure, splash out on a little extra luxury experiences to make your break in Cornwall extra special. From hot air ballooning and Champagne cream teas to hiring a classic car or a private chef, here’s a few ideas we can help organise at Carbis Bays Holidays:

Private boat charter

Charter your own skippered boat and explore the St Ives coastline, spotting seabirds and marine life on a bespoke itinerary to the likes of Godrevy Lighthouse (immortalised in Virginia Woolf’s To The Lighthouse) and Seal Island. The Dolly P can carry up to 12 passengers, making it the perfect vessel for any sea-bound adventure, whether you fancy a private celebration picnic in St Ives Bay or a full-blown trip to the Isles of Scilly.

Take a boat ride on the Dolly P with St Ives Boats during your stay with www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Take a private charter on the Dolly P

Hire a private chef

Fancy all the freedom of a stylish self-catering property with delectable food that you don’t have to cook yourself? Then why not hire a private chef to throw the ultimate dinner party at your holiday cottage? Whether you choose fresh fish flipped straight from rod to pan, or Cornish reared meats cooked to perfection, Benedict Quinn will whip up a culinary storm in the privacy of your luxurious accommodation. And, if you want to delve deeper into the Cornish foodie scene, top chef Benedict can also take you out to catch your own dinner with local fishermen, or teach you how to create a fine family feast out of local ingredients.

Benedict Quinn offers a luxury in-house dining experience, parties with nibbles and cook alongside experiences in Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Luxury in-house dining by Benedict Quinn

 

Private tours of St Ives

Wander around St Ives to your heart’s content, or take a tour of this fascinating town with a private tour guide. Whether you choose to take in the arty hotspots, delve into the fishing history or focus on the foodie haunts, your personal guide will regale you with stories, facts and legends that will unveil the most interesting and extraordinary aspects of your surroundings.

Tate, St Ives in Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Enjoy a private tour about Art in St Ives or The Story of St Ives

Champagne Cream Tea

Enjoy a Champagne cream tea on the decking overlooking one of Cornwall’s most beautiful beaches. At the Porthminster Beach Café you can order a bottle of your favourite fizz, served alongside the traditional Cornish treat of jam and scones. How better to combine swish seaside style with a dash of old-fashioned local fare?

A Cornish cream tea is an experience not to be missed during a holiday in Cornwall. Just add a glass of champagne for some added pizzazz! www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

A Cornish Cream Tea…just add champagne!

Complete your luxury experiences in St Ives by staying at one of Carbis Bays Holidays’ uber-stylish self-catering cottages. Opt for stunning sea views, a plush family pad or a cosy cottage for couples, and we’ll be on hand to help you organise special and luxurious days out on the doorstep.

 

By: Jessica Colliver On:13th March 2016
Categories:Holiday Ideas,Things to Do

Toddler friendly Days Out

10th February 2016

Holidays in Cornwall aren’t all about extreme water sports, hikes along the South West Coast Path and days lolling on the beach. There are plenty of attractions that babies and toddlers will love, and where parents of young children can relax, explore and have fun too. Here are some of our favourite toddler friendly days out:

Eden Project, Bodmin

Where else can toddlers step into a rainforest, explore the Med and get up-close to nature with weather-proof, child-friendly facilities at hand? Exploring our natural environment, children can step inside jungle huts, take a walk in the rainforest canopies, enjoy story-time in the iconic biomes and ride a tractor-train up through the gardens. As well as themed events throughout the year, during winter Eden hosts toddler ice-play sessions on the ice rink.

Explore the subtropical biomes at The Eden Project. A superb attraction for all the family. https://carbisbayholidays.co.uk

The Eden Project

National Maritime Museum, Falmouth

Boats, helicopters, pirates and sea life… experience maritime adventures with your feet firmly on dry land. At the National Maritime Museum Cornwall, kids can take the helm of a model sailing boat, checkout the underwater gallery and climb aboard a rescue helicopter. With interactive exhibitions designed especially for younger children, family trails and half-term art and craft workshops, it’s no wonder that this was the winner of the Telegraph Family Friendly Museum award 2014.

The National Maritime Museum in Falmouth is great for toddler friendly days out in Cornwall. Look out for their fun half term and holiday activities for kids. https://carbisbayholidays.co.uk

National Maritime Museum, Falmouth

St Ives beaches

The pearly beaches hemming St Ives are a haven for children wielding buckets, spades and bodyboards. Treat tots to a ride on the coastal train from St Erth, and footsteps from the station you can dip your toes in the Caribbean-blue waters lapping Porthminster beach. Head into town and tuck into Moomaid ice cream (made from local cows) while you watch the boats on harbour beach, build sandcastles and spot dolphins from The Island’s Porthgwidden, and splash in the waves with the surfers on Porthmeor.

Splashing in the waves on Porthmeor beach, St Ives. https://carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Becoming a surfer on Porthmeor Beach, St Ives

Paradise Park, Hayle

With plenty of animals to gawp at, from flamingos and red pandas to parrots and giant rabbits, Paradise Park really is paradise for young children. Join in with penguin feeding time, pet the farm animals, hop onboard the mini train and watch free-flying bird shows. Wildlife takes centre stage, but there are also plenty of park areas and the indoor Jungle Barn with slides and soft play for rainy days.

Wildlife takes centre stage at Paradise Park in Hayle. Children will love to get up close to penguins, flamingoes and birds of prey. They can also burn off some energy in the soft play located on site. https://carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Paradise Park, Hayle

Blue Reef Aquarium, Newquay

Peering into the underwater kingdoms on display at Newquay’s Blue Reef Aquarium, children will feel as if they’ve just dived into the Finding Nemo film set. Come face to face with all sorts of sea life from clown fish and sea cucumbers, to spider crabs and a giant octopus. The highlight is the underwater tunnel, where children will be mesmerised by close encounters with stingrays, reef sharks, turtles and tropical fish.

Families will enjoy this perspective of the underwater world at the Blue Reef Aquarium in Newquay. An ideal destination for toddler friendly days out in Cornwall. https://carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Blue Reef Aquarium, Newquay

Glendurgan Garden, Mawnan Smith

Get dizzy on the Giant’s Stride swing, find the heart of the cherry laurel maze, wend through the bamboo jungle and take shelter under giant Gunnera plants. Glendurgan is the perfect setting for a day out in the garden with toddlers: tumble through sub-tropical gardens, picnic on the beach, skim stones in the Helford River and scoff ice cream in the family-friendly café.

Toddlers will love Glendurgan Gardens. There is so much to do from swinging the giant's stride, to exploring the laurel maze and skimming stones in the Helford River. https://carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Swinging at Glendurgan Gardens!

Enjoy all of these toddler friendly days out in Cornwall while you’re staying in one of Carbis Bay Holidays’ cottages in and around St Ives. Our family friendly cottages are ideal for babies and young children, and we provide all sorts of equipment from travel cots and toys to highchairs and toddler steps.

Save

By: Amanda O'Toole On:10th February 2016
Categories:Family Friendly,Local Area,Things to Do

Dog Friendly Beaches

2nd February 2016

West Cornwall’s Dog Friendly Beaches…

With a wealth of world-class coastline, it’s no wonder why West Cornwall boasts beach living at its best. What’s more, with an eclectic mix of dog friendly beaches ideal for walks and days out, exploring the area’s stunning shorelines is an activity available to everyone.

Seasonal bans are imposed on many of the larger beaches, but there’s still an array that permit dogs all year round. In the St Ives Bay area, the stretch of sands south of Gwithian Towans to the Black Cliffs along the Hayle Riviera welcomes dogs across three miles of open golden sands.

Three unspoilt beaches: Peter’s Point, Upton Towans and Mexico Towans linked by the coastal path across windswept sand dunes ensure oodles of space amidst beautifully sublime surrounds presiding over the renowned Godrevy Lighthouse.

Across the river, and Porthkidney Beach is nestled between Hayle estuary and Hawke’s Point, just a brief coastal walk or drive from Carbis Bay. Offering a wide expanse of north-facing sands, it’s easy to see how artist John Miller found his muse amongst such soul-stirring seascapes.

Beyond ‘secret’ Bamaluz Beach (that only reveals itself at low tide) between St Ives Harbour and Porthgwidden Beach, holidayers can head further west for more dog friendly beaches.

Past wild moorlands and craggy clifflines, Portheras Cove provides a wonderfully secluded spot between Morvah and Pendeen, while Priest’s Cove at Cape Cornwall presents a picturesque, end-of-the-world locale, perfect for a picnic or barbecue flanked by spellbinding sunsets.

Similarly striking, Gwenver Beach near Land’s End offers not just a surfer’s paradise, but dog owners’ dream. Not the most accessible beach, Sennen Cove’s concealed neighbour is well worth the cliff-hugging walk down, providing the type of tranquil, rugged charm usually reserved for exclusive island escapes.

Along the western Atlantic edge at Lands End, you’ll discover a captivating collection of exotic-looking coves, including the crystalline waters of Nanjizel and the wildly romantic Pedn Vounder at Porthcurno just past the legendary Minack Theatre (though be advised by locals and Lifeguards on the best access routes for this tidal beach).

Venturing westward toward Penzance, and Roskilly Beach comprises a scenic rocky outcrop under the cliff road between Mousehole and Newlyn – itself home to the pebbly and dog friendly environs of Wherrytown Beach by Newlyn Art Gallery.

The softly curving Mounts Bay sweeps from Newlyn past Marazion, housing the iconic St Michael’s Mount along with the dog welcoming Penzance Promenade beaches (tide-pending) and sandy shallows of Long Rock Beach.

Further eastward, a world of wave-lashed coves, exposed headlands and meandering pathways greet guests to Prussia Cove, where the gorgeously jagged landscape offers everything from sheltered shores to fields of wildflowers.

The West Cornwall coastline continues east toward Porthleven, where Loe Bar Beach – complete with Cornwall’s largest natural fresh water lake – permits dogs to freely roam.

The county’s most southerly and uber pretty point is The Lizard peninsula, which provides a selection of dog friendly locations including the magnificent Mullion Cove, Polpoer Cove and Pentreath.

Carbis Bay Holidays offer a fantastic collection of luxury dog friendly properties within the St Ives area of West Cornwall. Many of our dog friendly properties feature enclosed gardens and nearby beaches and dogs stay for free throughout the year. View our dog friendly home from homes to find the perfect coastal retreat.

By: Amanda O'Toole On:2nd February 2016
Categories:Dog Friendly,Local Area

Celebrated for its unique near-island status, Cornwall is surrounded by the ocean on all coasts but one, meaning that a spectacular beach sunset is a holiday guarantee.  A waterside wonderland, West Cornwall’s land to sea ratio presents a bevy of beautiful beaches and seascapes that showcasing the natural light and acting as an awe-inspiring canvas.   Check out our recommendations for the best beach sunsets in Cornwall:

Carbis Bay

Carbis Bay makes an especially captivating sunset destination, providing the perfectly sheltered spot to admire the sun as it sinks beneath the ocean.  Imagine your day on the beach morphing into night as you bask in the sun’s final rays and wallow in the sea’s warm shallows for an incredibly fitting finale.

The sunset in Carbis Bay is, in our opinion, one of the best beach sunsets in Cornwall. We are of course biased but the magical colour displayed wows us time after time. This image was taken from one of our properties at Carbis Beach apartments. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Sunset over Carbis Bay from Carbis Beach apartments

Porthmeor Beach, St Ives

Venture into St Ives in the evening, where the Island and Porthmeor Beach take advantage of their north Atlantic reach and are renowned for treating visitors to some truly spellbinding scenes. Whether you wish to dine in a café or restaurant or enjoy an al fresco glass of wine, your day will end with dazzling, show-stopping effect.

St Ives Bay

The northern stretch of coastline along St Ives Bay from Hayle Towans to Godrevy offers miles of unspoiled beaches from which to experience nightfall, providing picture-postcard views and rainbow coloured skies that smack of pure romance.

Sunset over Hayle Towans and St Ives Bay. One of the most beautiful sunsets in West Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Sunset over Hayle Towans in St Ives Bay

Land’s End

For one of the most memorable and best beach sunsets in Cornwall, the Land’s End area delivers a heady dose of high drama. Being at the far western point of the country makes it one of the best vantage points for viewing jaw-dropping sunsets scattered over uninterrupted Atlantic Ocean.  You may also be lucky to see the sub-tropical Isles of Scilly dotted in the distance.

Cape Cornwall, Sennen and Gwenver Beaches

Cape Cornwall, Sennen and Gwenver beaches are particular sunset hot spots, providing a plethora of eye-catching features and gazing opportunities such as the twin-peaks of the Brisons rocks to the pulsating Longships Lighthouse.

Marazion Beach

The southern coast proffers more subtle skies, as the sun escapes westward over the land, with the early-disappearing soft light pouring peach and rose tones over Mounts Bay.  Marazion Beach grants eye-catching views of the bay stretching from the south-jutting Lizard to the striking silhouette of St Michael’s Mount and outlying fishing village of Mousehole.

St Michaels Mounts sunset. One of the best sunsets in Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Sunset at Marazion Beach

Sunset from the Ocean

For something decidedly different and utterly unforgettable, consider taking a boat tour or twilight sail from Carbis Bay in order to literally transport yourself into the sunset. Whether you sit alongside or immerse yourself into the ocean with a swim, surf, stand up paddleboard or sail; relish the raw magic of dusk before the arrival of yet another promising dawn.

Sunset from the Ocean at the Cornish Coast. Whether you surf, sail or stand up paddle board, relish the silence and contemplate what the next day ahead holds. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Sunset from the Ocean

Carbis Bay Holidays offers a wide range of self catering holiday homes in the St Ives area that make the ideal base for experiencing the dramatic sunsets of West Cornwall. If you’re considering a couple’s break or honeymoon, our wide portfolio of properties will help ensure the perfectly romantic stay.

By: Jessica Colliver On:2nd February 2016
Categories:Holiday Ideas

With miles upon miles of Atlantic-lashed shores and a plethora of paradise coves, it’s little wonder that Cornwall’s glorious beaches lure the holiday crowds. Yet with more than 250 miles of coastline to explore, there are plenty of lesser-known beaches where you can escape the bucket-and-spade brigades and bag your own patch of pearly sands. These are some of our favourite secret beaches and coves in Cornwall:

Porthkidney Sands, nr St Ives

Flanked by Carbis Bay to the west and Hayle Towans to the east, the less accessible Porthkidney Sands remains crowd-free even in the height of summer. Boasting a mile of empty, dune-backed sands (that’s actually quite easy to reach from Lelant), it’s often the domain of just a handful of surfers and smug dog walkers. Dubbed ‘Happy Dog Beach’ by the locals, it’s just two miles along the South West Coast Path from the hub of St Ives.

Chapel Porth, nr Porthtowan

It’s no surprise that surfers and families flock to Porthtowan, what with its smile of sand pummelled by Atlantic breakers and the convenience of beachside parking, cafés and surf shops. However, you don’t have to forego beachside parking to enjoy its wilder, more remote neighbour, Chapel Porth, with its sugary sands, sea caves and staggering cliffs atop which dramatic engine houses peer out to sea.

Porth Chapel Beach

Durgan, Mawnan Smith

Part of the magic of this shingle and sand beach on the banks of the Helford is getting to it through Glendurgan Garden. Once you’ve bashed through bamboo groves, got lost in the cherry laurel maze and been dwarfed by giant Gunnera plants, it’s hard to believe your eyes when you eventually emerge on the shores of a charming beach that’s perfect for skimming stones and building sandcastles.

Pedn Vounder, nr Porthcurno

With white sands and iridescent-blue seas backed by towering cliffs and the famous Logan Rock, this paradise cove has many reasons for keeping the crowds at bay: Firstly it’s a low-tide beach and, except on a spring tide when you can walk from neighbouring Porthcurno, it’s accessible only via knee-wobbling cliff path. And secondly it’s, unofficially, a naturist beach.

Gwenver, nr Sennen

Stroll east along the beach from Sennen Cove and eventually you’ll set foot on the more rugged, more secluded Gwenver, where serious beach lovers sprawl on sugar-white sands, scramble over wave-hewn boulders and dip in unforgiving waves. Fortunately, unless you’ve strayed from Sennen on a low tide, the steep cliff staircase is a good deterrent for anyone not utterly serious about beach life.

Duckpool, nr Bude

At the foot on the Coombe Valley – north of Bude’s busier beaches – awaits a wilder, more desolate coastline where Jurassic-looking ridges yawn towards the border of Devon. And it is here that you will discover the rugged little treasure of Duckpool, where vast cliffs collapse into a sand and boulder beach and there are no tourist trappings except for an ice cream van on the sunniest days.

Vault Beach, Gorran Haven

A good ten-minute stroll from any parking and with no beachside amenities to spoil its beauty, Vault Beach attracts naturists and sea swimmers looking for some peace and quiet. Sheltered by Dodman Point on Cornwall’s south coast, here the fine shingle shelves into piercing blue waters that are usually calm and hospitable to all levels of swimmers.

Trebarwith Strand, nr Port Isaac

Beyond Polzeath, North Cornwall isn’t renowned for its beaches ¬– instead a wild and rugged coastline prevails until you reach Bude. However, the few sandy coves hiding amongst staggering cliffs along this section of coast are some of Cornwall’s wildest. And Trebarwith Strand is one of these gems – a domain of caves, rock pools and sand made for barefoot explorations with crabbing nets and buckets

Perranuthnoe, nr Marazion

Sandwiched between Praa Sands and Marazion, the sheltered cove of Perranuthnoe bags all the beauty of its neighbours, without inviting the crowds to enjoy it. From the cliffs you can gaze out to the magical sight of St Michael’s Mount, whilst the beach itself boasts the same excellent swimming and surf conditions as nearby Praa.

Bedruthan Steps, nr Newquay

With its mussel-clad towers of granite rising from the sand, Bedruthan Steps attracts plenty of camera-swinging visitors to snap its beauty from the cliff tops. However, many are deterred from the beach by the 140-odd steps to reach it, so you can enjoy the gob-smacking scenery from crowd-free pearly sands punctuated by rockpools teeming with marine life.

2015-07-09 at 18.38.09_Ver.1.02

Discover all of Cornwall’s secret coves when you stay in one of Carbis Bays Holidays’ luxury cottages. We’ve got a huge range of family holiday homes, boutique boltholes and stylish self-catering properties around St Ives and Carbis Bay.

By: Amanda O'Toole On:2nd February 2016
Categories:Holiday Ideas

Fusing fabulous settings with first-rate service and fantastic food, you can find some of the best restaurants in Cornwall.  It is fast becoming something of a dining destination. Harvesting its natural surrounds by fishing and farming the freshest produce while hosting an array of restaurants, pop ups and festivals means that the county’s cuisine is celebrated in supreme, lip-smacking style.

Offering everything from fine dining to family (and dog) friendly, Cornwall is home to some seriously special spots that make dining out a deliciously coveted pastime…

The Porthmeor and Porthminster Beach Cafés, St Ives
St Ives’ surf beach café on Porthmeor serves top taste bud-tickling tapas from Australian chef Cameron Jennings, whose distinctive flavours find mouth-watering form in the likes of crispy fried monkfish and chili pineapple caramel, chorizo meatballs and lemon pepper calamari. The magnificent menu boasts extensive breakfast, lunch and supper options alongside a world wine list and Juice Bar.

Presenting sprawling seascapes from sheltered sands, The Porthminster Beach Café is an award winning seafood restaurant that specialises in Asian and Mediterranean cuisine. The innovative menu caters for breakfast, lunch and dinner (also serving coffees and patisserie), all with a beautiful side of prime, Blue-Flagged beach.

Tolcarne Inn, Newlyn
After a decade of delivering high-end, exclusive fine dining, Ben Tunnicliffe’s desire to share his Michelin starred cuisine and love of good food with West Cornwall heralds a new movement in eating out.

Sourcing fish and seafood from neighbouring Newlyn Harbour, Ben combines the best produce with award-winning flair to create delectable (and affordable) dishes served in a wonderfully inviting and dog-friendly pub setting.

The Tolcarne Inn in Cornwall is one of the best restaurants in Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

The Tolcarne Inn

Ben’s Cornish Kitchen, Marazion
Head Chef Ben Prior certainly steps up to the plate. Locally sourced fresh ingredients feature on a daily changing menu built on fuss free, flavoursome and unforgettably good food.

Minimalist interiors portray cool coastal style where clean lines and a muted palette perfectly juxtapose the elegant complexity of the dishes, providing a palatable taste sensation.

Gaining a Certificate of Excellence from Trip Advisor in 2013, as well as appearing on The Times’ 30 Best Restaurants By The Sea list, Ben’s Cornish Kitchen is well and deservedly on the map.

Kota Restaurant, Porthleven
Kota (Maori for shellfish) presents Pacific cooking by way of inspired creations from chef virtuoso, Jude Kereama. Its organic fish and meat menu is crammed with formidable flavours such as their Japanese plate of edamame and miso risotto, tempura sweet potato with dipping sauce and buckwheat noodle and seaweed salad.

Located at Porthleven’s historic harbour head near sister café Kota Kai, the restaurant boasts multiple appeal: a wonderfully scenic backdrop, laudable food and sweetly inviting staff and surrounds. Fast gaining wide repute as one of the South West’s best restaurants, it is just one of five throughout Cornwall to be awarded a Michelin Bib Gourmand 2014.

Nathan Outlaw
St Enodoc Hotel in Rock is home to the eponymous restaurant from one of Cornwall’s most prominent chefs. Nathan Outlaw’s two Michelin starred a la carte gem presides over Cornwall’s Camel estuary, where the stunning scenery is an apt prelude to the fabulous feast in store.

Expect modern British seafood (and meat dishes) such as Porthilly oysters and fish fresh from the market such as brill on the bone, baked cod and lemon sole locally caught by Cornish fisherman certified by the Responsible Fishing Scheme.

Other dining hotspots in Cornwall can be found at Jamie Oliver’s flagship Fifteen Cornwall at Newquay’s Watergate Bay; Fowey’s fabulous Sam’s on the Beach and The Old Quay House’s Q Restaurant; and Mustard & Rye in Truro, which brings big American flavours from a retro diner-style restaurant complete with Speakeasy bar upstairs.

Carbis Bay Holidays has a wide range of self-catering properties that allow visitors to stay in West Cornwall while exploring its brilliant range of restaurants and culinary events. So whether you’re looking for a foodie’s weekend of frolics or family holiday, you’ll find something spectacular to suit.

By: Amanda O'Toole On:2nd February 2016
Categories:Food and Drink,Holiday Ideas

Romantic Breaks in Cornwall

15th January 2016

Fall under the spell of Cornwall and enjoy one of these romantic breaks. Wine and dine by the sea, walk hand-in-hand across pearly beaches and rolling moors, and watch storms scud across the ocean as you hunker down by a roaring log fire. The perfect destination for honeymoons, anniversary breaks and weekend flings, Cornwall seduces lovers with romantic outings from its cliff-tops to its cultural hubs:

Champagne Sundowner

Nothing spells out romance like the clinking of champagne glasses as you watch the sun plonk into the ocean. There are plenty of seafront bars in St Ives, but our favourite for bubbles at sunset is the Porthmeor Beach Café. Toast summer evenings with Cornish, Italian or French fizz, snuggle up under a blanket on the beachside terrace and graze your way through a tantalising tapas menu.

Drink in a breathtaking sunset on Porthmeor beach, St Ives. A great idea to experience during a romantic break in Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Drink in the sunset at Porthmeor Beach Cafe.

Hand in Hand Beach Walk

Park up at the beautiful St Uny Church in Lelant and mosey down to the golden sands of Porthkidney Beach. Tucked into the nook of St Ives Bay, here you can scour the shoreline for beach treasure, dip your toes in the ocean and climb up to Hawkes Point for eye-popping views. Either follow the coast path on to arty St Ives, or loop back through the dunes to your starting point.

Walk hand in hand on the beach during a romantic break in Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Walk hand in hand on Porthkidney beach.

Beach Picnic

Pack a hamper with artisan Cornish goodies from The Allotment Deli in St Ives, and head to Mexico’s Beach for a picnic. Sandwiched between Hayle Rivermouth and Gwithian, this much quieter stretch of sand deters crowds because access is via towering sand dunes. If you’re prepared to carry a little extra on the calf-busting climb back to the car park, why not bring a barbecue for a sizzling beach date?

Love in Action

Just because you’re on a romantic holiday it doesn’t mean you want to sit around holding hands all day long. Castaway together on a kayaking trip around St Ives Bay, try the latest craze of stand-up paddle boarding, or spot marine life on board a Hawaiian canoe tour. The Ocean Sport Centre at Carbis Bay will help you fulfil all your water-bound passions.

Wild Walks and Cosy Inns

Strike out on a two-pub loop from Zennor’s cosy Tinners Arms (much-loved by DH Lawrence), stomping along two miles of staggering coastline lapped by crystal waters into which a legendary mermaid is said to have lured a local chorister. Turn inland at the rugged promontory of The Gurnard’s Head, stopping for a slap-up lunch in the stylish hostelry of the same name, before taking a shortcut back across the fields to your starting point.

Take a wild walk along the coastal path to breathtaking Gurnard's Head. Enjoy a slap up meal at the local Inn there. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Take a romantic wild walk to Gurnard’s Head.

Love Art

Stroll through subtropical gardens littered with monumental bronze, stone and wood sculptures inspired by the coastal environment around St Ives. Barbara Hepworth is one of Cornwall’s most eminent artists, and a spin around her studio and sculpture gardens invites you to experience her passion for this stunning landscape. Get joint entry into the Barbara Hepworth Museum and the Tate St Ives, and complete your art tour with a tipple at the sea-view café on the top floor of the Tate.

Stroll through the subtropical gardens littered with sculptures and dedicated to eminent St Ives artist, Barbara Hepworth. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Explore Barbara Hepworth’s sculpture garden and studio.

View to Dine For

Looking for an intimate, romantic spot dinner venue and a table for two? Bag a window table at the Porthgwidden Beach Café, nestled beside a white-sand cove on St Ives’ ‘Island’. The lesser-known little sister of the famous Porthminster Café, here you’ll be seduced by sumptuous Med-inspired dishes (using the best Cornish produce, of course), mesmerising sea views and the soundtrack of the ocean.

 

Take a romantic break in Cornwall, staying in one of Carbis Bays Holidays’ cottages for couples in the St Ives area. We’ve got boutique boltholes, honeymoon hideaways and little love nests to choose from.  

By: Jessica Colliver On:15th January 2016
Categories:Holiday Ideas

Wildlife Activities Cornwall

12th January 2016

Cornwall has a fascinating and diverse eco-system, from the tranquil seashore to the rugged moorland heaths. These wonderful habitats make Cornwall a fantastic wildlife haven.  If you love nature, then there is an array of wildlife activities in Cornwall:

Nature Trails

There are several nature trails, all based within a twenty minute drive of St Ives.

  • Baker’s Pit (old china clay works, heathland, wet willow woodland, scrub & grassland), near Nancledra.
  • Tehidy Woods (woodland & lakes), near Portreath.
  • Upton Towans (sand dune & grassland), Hayle.
Tehidy Woods in autumn, a walk through the woods is a great opportunity for wildlife activities in Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Tehidy Woods in Autumn

Best Places for Rock Pooling

A good majority of local beaches have good rock pools, but here are our personal favourites.

  • Battery Rocks, Penzance.
  • Godrevy Beach, Hayle.
  • Sennen Beach.
Rockpooling at the beach in Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Exploring marine life in Cornish rock pools

Tidal Pools

A great, safe alternative to swimming in the sea. Filled with fresh sea water at high tide and warmed by the sun during the day. The nearest tidal pools can be found at:

  • Cape Cornwall.
  • Chapel Rock, Perranporth.
  • Portreath.

Guided Nature Tours

Marine Discovery offer an exhilarating wildlife watching boat trip from Penzance Harbour, aboard an exciting sailing catamaran. Search for seals, seabirds, dolphins, porpoises, basking sharks and more along the stunning Cornish coastline.

Elemental Tours provide expertly guided, marine wildlife, ocean & coastal cruises on a 12 seater R.I.B. around the spectacular Land’s End and Lizard Peninsulas.

Also there are many small group, safari- style, tours and walks, with local guides where you can explore wildlife, flowers, ancient sites, folklore, mining history and geology, all set in and around the stunning granite cliffs and moorlands of West Penwith.

Where is your favourite place to enjoy wildlife activities in Cornwall?

Save

Save

Save

By: Amanda O'Toole On:12th January 2016
Categories:Things to Do

St Ives at Christmas

22nd November 2015

When it comes down to the festive season, St Ives is most famous for its carnival-style New Year street party. However, this is just the culmination of a calendar packed with magical events throughout December. These are some of our favourite things to do if you’re on a Christmas break in and around St Ives:

See Santa Arrive by Lifeboat

Father Christmas makes his arrival in St Ives in a unique fashion: ditching his old-fashioned sleigh for an RNLI lifeboat, he zooms into the harbour to switch on the Christmas lights and kick off the festive season. Swarms of children follow Santa in a musical parade through the town, ending up at his snowy grotto for gifts and goodies.

Carols in Carbis Bay

Nothing conjures up that Christmas feeling better then an evening of carols, mince pies and mulled wine. Which is why, each December, the Carbis Bay Hotel invites everyone to join a gathering of local choirs for a festive sing-a-long in their beachside conservatory.

Party Train into St Ives

As if taking the train into St Ives wasn’t already an enchanting experience for a winter’s day out, on Saturdays in December the St Ives branch line puts on a special Christmas party train for this magnificent journey. Hop on-board the decorated carriages for music, a children’s entertainer and festive goody bags.

Christmas Panto

Hailed as one of the best pantomimes in the county, the Kidz R Us Christmas show rounds up another year of award-winning performances from this St Ives-based youth theatre company. Last year it was Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs that brought modern hits, dance, drama and comedy to the St Ives Theatre stage – we can’t wait to hear what’s in store for Christmas 2016.

Christmas Food Trail

If the previous year’s festive food trail is anything to go by, this will become a staple event in the St Ives Christmas calendar. A unique and flavoursome way to undergo your Christmas shopping, it encourages you to taste your way around some of the town’s favourite foodie hotspots. Gathering gifts and clues on route, at the end of the trail you are entered into a prize draw.

New Year’s Eve Party

The culmination of the Christmas season, this is the biggest, most dazzling party in the St Ives annual calendar. The entire town takes on a carnival ambience and folk come from far and wide to join the fancy dress celebrations. Streets are packed with revellers sporting crazy costumes, live music spills out of harbour-side venues and the skies over the ocean light up with fireworks at midnight.

To find out about all the events happening in St Ives over Christmas, see www.stivesindecember.co.uk and www.stives-cornwall.co.uk.

Carbis Bay Holidays offer a range of self-catering holiday cottages perfect for a Christmas holiday in St Ives. Whether you’re looking for a cosy cottage with a wood burner, or a family pile footsteps from the sea, checkout our luxury holiday accommodation in and around St Ives.

NOTE: this article will be reviewed and updated closer to Christmas to ensure that all dates and events are running.

By: Jessica Colliver On:22nd November 2015
Categories:Local Area,Seasonal Breaks,Things to Do

When it’s cold outside, where better to hunker down than by the roaring fire in a traditional inn? These are some of our favourite cosy pubs in Cornwall with a log fire, where you can enjoy a glass of champers or pint of real ale together with fine Cornish cuisine:

The Queen’s Hotel, St Ives

Warm your cockles in a bar decked out in Cornish art, vintage furniture and comfy sofas. At The Queen’s Hotel you can sink cask ales or fine wines, and order dishes from a blackboard chalked daily with flavours sourced from Cornwall’s farms and fishermen. Kids and dogs are welcome too.

The Queens Hotel, is a one of the best cosy pubs in Cornwall with a log fire. It boasts a lovely restaurant and is in central St Ives. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

The Queen’s Hotel, St Ives.

The Halsetown Inn, St Ives

On the western flanks of town, The Halsetown Inn is helmed by the crew behind St Ives’ award-winning Blas Burgerworks. In a relaxed and sophisticated setting – with squeaky-green eco-credentials, no less – enjoy a good selection of ales and wines served alongside an original, ethically sourced menu (seafood curry to pulled pork). It’s little wonder that this gem has already swept up Gold in the Taste of the West Awards.

The Watermill, Lelant Downs, nr St Ives

Once a corn mill – and still with a working waterwheel – The Watermill boasts sprawling gardens outside while log fires warm its traditional interior. Dogs and children are welcome in the bar, where you can slouch into a sofa with the newspaper or sit up and dine on decent pub grub. Upstairs, under the beams of the old mill loft, you can dine in the ambience of a more formal restaurant.

Cosy Fire at The Watermill. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Roaring fire at The Windmill.

Gurnard’s Head, Treen

Stomp straight off the coast path, bring the family and the dog, or dress-up for an occasion dinner at this friendly inn on the cliffs of West Cornwall. Whether you pull up a pew by the fire or take a seat in the eccentric dining room of the Gurnard’s Head, expect Cornish ales, unusual wines and an upmarket menu packed with Cornish fish, game and produce plucked from the surrounding coast and countryside.

The Old Success Inn, Sennen

Nudging the pearly sands of Sennen Cove, with its roaring log fire and low rafters The Old Success exudes all the charm you’d expect of a traditional inn. Sepia prints and nautical memorabilia adorn the walls, harking back to the 17th century when the pub was a thatched cottage where fishermen shared their profits. These days it’s coast path hikers, beach goers, dog walkers and surfers that huddle around the bar, fuelling up on hearty pub food and St Austell Brewery beers.

Tolcarne Inn, Newlyn

With Cornish foodie superstar Ben Tunnicliffe now running the Tolcarne Inn, the quality of the seafood (landed footsteps away by Newlyn’s fisherman) needs no introduction. But as well as serving a concise menu of delectable fish, Tunnicliffe has managed to retain the ambience of a traditional village boozer, with live jazz on Sundays, real ales and Cornish ciders on tap, and a log fire.

The Tolcarne Inn in Cornwall is one of the best restaurants in Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

The Tolcarne Inn run by chef Ben Tunnicliffe.

Come home to your own cosy lodgings with a log fire when you stay in one of our luxury holiday cottages in St Ives or Carbis Bay. Checkout our range of self-catering properties where you can snuggle up by the log-burner, minutes from the coast and award-winning beaches.

By: Jessica Colliver On:29th October 2015
Categories:Food and Drink

Buggy Walks in Cornwall

13th September 2015

From trails hugging the coastline to paths wending through woodland, many of Cornwall’s walking routes are accessible to a push-chairs; so there’s no need to miss out on any of the eye-popping landscapes when you’ve got tots in tow. Explore Cornwall with your little ones on these six accessible buggy walks in Cornwall that soak up some of the county’s stunning scenery.

Buggy Walks from Penzance to Marazion

This easy-peasy two-mile stretch flanking the glory of Mounts Bay proves that the South West Coast Path isn’t just for serious hikers. With sailing boats and the sea-bound St Michael’s Mount on one side, and trains chugging past on the other, there’s plenty of eye candy for buggy-bound toddlers. The trail is level and wide with plenty of places to stop for a picnic, skim pebbles or build a sandcastle on the beach.
Start Point: Penzance train station
More Information: www.southwestcoastpath.com

Buggy Walks in Tehidy Woods Country Park

Fancy a stroll through enchanting woodland where little ones can feed ducks, spot squirrels and play Tarzan on rope swings? With over 9 miles of walking trails ranging from an easy 1/2-mile loop around the lakes to longer routes in the North Cliffs woodland, Tehidy Country Park offers the perfect terrain for buggies and bikes. There’s an excellent family-friendly café too.
Start point: Tehidy South Drive entrance (SW650432)
More information: www.cornwall.gov.uk

Spot a Squirrel in Tehidy Woods. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Spot a Squirrel in Tehidy Woods

Buggy Walks from Sennen Cove to Land’s End

Cornwall’s western tip boasts some of the region’s wildest, wave-hewn scenery. And if you follow National Cycle Route 3 from Sennen Cove to Lands End (which runs parallel to the coast path) you can still appreciate much of the jaw-dropping panorama from a wide, level path. It’s about a mile to Lands End visitor centre, from where you can reach the south-westerly tip of Britain and look out to Longships Lighthouse.
Start Point: Mayon Green Car Park, Sennen
More information: www.southwestcoastpath.com

The Southern most tip of Britain at Land's End, Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

The Southern Most tip of Britain at Land’s End

Buggy Walks along Bude Canal

Start your stroll along Bude Canal from the Weir café and wildlife centre, where little ones can enjoy interactive wildlife exhibits, a playground and lakeside farmland. From here follow the canal towpath seaward, spotting herons, egrets and otters in the nature reserve, before emerging beside the wharf, beaches and sea lock at Bude.
Start point: The Weir Bistro & Wildlife Centre
More information: www.southwestcoastpath.com

 Buggy Walks from Daymer Bay to Polzeath

Set off from the pearly crescent of Daymer Bay (backed by Brea Hill and the wonky steeple of St Enodoc Church), and walk along verdant cliff tops at the mouth of the Camel Estuary. A mile and half of wide, well maintained path takes you all the way to the surfy village of Polzeath, and you can pause on route for a spot of rock-pooling at the rugged Greenaway Beach.
Start Point: Daymer Bay car park
More information: www.phototrails.org

Picnic between Daymer and Polzeath. One of the best buggy walks in Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

A picnic with a view between Daymer and Polzeath

Buggy Walks from Swanpool to Gylyyngvase

For a snapshot of Cornwall’s south coast scenery try this short, easy stroll between two of Falmouth’s beaches. Start in the sub-tropical foliage of Queen Mary Gardens, beside Gyllyngvase beach, and follow the tarmacked coastal path over the cliffs, taking in spectacular views of Pendennis Castle and Falmouth Bay. The next crescent of sand, Swanpool beach, is perfect for a paddle, skimming stones or a wedge of homemade cake from the beach café.
Start Point: Gyllyngvase Beach (SW809316)
More Information: www.falmouth.co.uk

Enjoy a cake as a treat after a long walk a long walk. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Homemade cakes. A well deserved treat!

All of these walks are ideal to explore from one of Carbis Bay Holidays’ superb range of family friendly cottages. We make holidays with young children easy, by providing toddler-friendly accommodation equipped with travel cots, toys and highchairs.

By: Jessica Colliver On:13th September 2015
Categories:Family Friendly,Local Area,Things to Do

With its cracking beaches, scrub-topped headlands and rugged hills, there are plenty of spectacular places for the perfect picnic in St Ives. Fill your basket with delicious local foodstuffs in St Ives, and spread out your picnic blanket in one of our favourite local picnic spots.

Where to fill your picnic basket

With its fast-growing reputation on the culinary scene, it comes as no surprise that St Ives has plenty of shops selling the county’s finest local produce.

Pop into The Allotment Deli and get your hands on home-baked treats and Cornish produce, from fresh artisan bread to goats’ cheese tarts. Fill your hamper with Scotch eggs, olives, cheese and chutneys, not forgetting a hunk of carrot cake, caramel slice or a rock bun for afterwards.

The Allotment Deli, St Ives is the perfect place to stock up on fresh local produce for all your self catering needs. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

The Allotment Deli

Another of St Ives’ finest delis is The Digey Food Room, where you can stuff a hessian bag full of local and international goodies to graze on. Think savoury tarts, crumbly cheeses and Cornish cider, as well as Spanish and Italian delicacies such as chorizo, Serrano ham and antipasto ingredients.

 

If you’re planning a romantic picnic, pop the cork on an unusual vintage from Scarlet Wines. Friendly staff will help you choose the finest wine for your alfresco feast, plus there’s a selection of foodie delights from the legendary Baker Tom’s bread to local preserves.

Scarlet Wines offers a wealth of local and sparkling wines for any special occasion during your stay in St Ives. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Scarlet Wines

For an easy-peasy picnic, grab a warm pasty from one of St Ives’ bakeries and whisk it straight to the beach to eat it. We love the award-winning pasties from the Cornish Bakehouse, or – if you’re a real connoisseur – head to Hayle for a famous Philp’s Cornish pasty.

Where to lay your picnic blanket

From headlands to hilltops, these are a few of our favourite picnic spots:

Beaches
With a string of pearly beaches to choose from in St Ives, you don’t have to carry your hamper far from a local deli to be sat on the sand, stuffing fine food with a jaw-dropping sea view. However, for a more exclusive patch of sand, hop on the train to Lelant Saltings (or cover the 4 miles on foot) and descend onto Porthkidney Sands. Tucked into the nook of St Ives Bay, here you can hunker in the dunes or sprawl out on the beach, savouring your picnic along with views to Godrevy Lighthouse and the bay’s golden beaches.

 

Headlands
Striking out west along the South West Coast Path from St Ives, Clodgy Point is a prime picnic spot lashed by the wild Atlantic and topped by wildflowers. From here you can spot seabirds (and even passing pods of dolphins), while peering back towards Porthmeor or west along the craggy coastline stretching to Lands End. Nudging the lighthouse in the distance, at the other end of St Ives Bay is Godrevy Head, where the grassy National Trust car park – perched above a sandy swimming cove and a short walk from a seal colony – is a popular, more accessible picnic location.

 

Hill
The highest hill in West Cornwall, Trencrom is just a couple of miles south of St Ives. It’s a fairly easy climb up to this ancient hill fort steeped in history and legend, yet from up here you can enjoy your picnic with views of Godrevy and Hayle Estuary to the east, and Mounts Bay to the south.

 

Hidden Cove
There are few places for which folk pack a picnic with such gusto as the Minack Theatre. Hampers stuffed with Champagne and chocolate strawberries are a common sight before performances start at this amphitheatre overlooking Porthcurno. However, we prefer to take a pre-show excursion over the cliff-tops, to picnic on the Caribbean-white sands of the more private Porthchapel Beach.

Wherever you choose to picnic, Carbis Bay Holidays offers the perfect self-catering accommodation to come back to – from romantic retreats to family villas.

By: Jessica Colliver On:15th July 2015
Categories:Food and Drink,Local Area

Being one of the UK’s favourite holiday resorts, it’s little surprise that there’s plenty for energetic families to do in St Ives. Immerse yourself in nature and get your heart racing on all levels of these active family adventures:

Explore the Bay by Hawaiian Canoe or SUP

Born from a passion for watersports, the Ocean Sports Centre encourages all ages and abilities to cast off from Carbis Bay and explore beyond the beach. Families can join in the latest global craze of stand-up paddle boarding on the (usually) calm waters, hire sit-on-top kayaks, or learn the ropes on a fleet of Topper dinghies. However, the most unique vessel for a coastal explorer tour is a four – or six-seater Hawaiian canoe, with underwater viewers that bring you face-to-face with marine life.

A colourful line up of kayaks offered for hire on Carbis Bay beach by Ocean Sports. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Try kayaking with Ocean Sports, Carbis Bay

Surf Porthmeor Beach

Is it possible to come to Cornwall and not dabble in the county’s most popular watersport? Sandy-bottomed and safe for beginners, St Ives’ Porthmeor is the ideal location to try surfing. Catering for family groups and all levels of wave riders, the St Ives Surf Centre will get you on your feet and gliding towards the shore in no time. Or, if you can’t bear the thought of squeezing into a wetsuit and battling the Atlantic swell, simply rent a deckchair and watch the rest of the family have a go.

At St Ives Surf Centre, you can hire boards, wet suits, deck chairs and wind breaks for your day out on Porthmeor Beach. Perfect for your active family adventures in St Ives. when staying with www.carbisbayholiday.co.uk

St Ives Surf Centre

Walk and Ride from St Ives to Carbis Bay

In the days when I didn’t have two young children in tow, my favourite walk from St Ives was the 6 miles to Zennor – along gorse-topped cliffs and boulder-strewn moorland flanked by the Atlantic. However, while that’s out of our league, I prefer the much easier mile-long walk to Carbis Bay. Not only is there is very little ascent and descent to tackle, but as well as the spectacular scenery you’ve got sandy beaches at each end of the walk, both equipped with family-friendly facilities such as lifeguards, cafés and toilets. And once you reach Carbis Bay, you can hop on the train back to St Ives.

Scenic Train Link from Carbis Bay to St Ives, a must for guests of www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

The scenic train line between Carbis Bay and St Ives

Brace Yourself for a Multi-Activity Day

Experience a range of activities on land and sea, on a great value, multi-activity, family day out with JB Adventures. Your instructor will scoop you up from St Ives and take you on a whirlwind of activities from kite buggying and fishing, to coasteering and horse riding. Tailor-make your itinerary from an assortment of activities – participants as young as 6 years old can try giant bubble making, kite making and tandem kite-buggying.

Experience an active family adventure by horse riding on the beach in St Ives, Cornwall. A magical memory of your stay with www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Horse riding on the beach

Catch Your Own Mackerel for Tea

Hop aboard for a family-friendly fishing trip and learn how to catch mackerel using traditional hand-lines. Or, if you prefer your seafood plated up at one of St Ives’ harbour-side restaurants, ditch the fishing trip for an exciting boat ride out with St Ives Boats to Seal Island, Godrevy Lighthouse or Hell’s Mouth. You never know what you might encounter out to sea – from pods of dolphins to seals, basking sharks and sunfish.

Take a boat ride on the Dolly P with St Ives Boats during your stay with www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Take a trip out on the Dolly P to Seal Island

Whatever level of adventure you’re after, Carbis Bay Holidays offers a wide selection of luxury family accommodation in and around St Ives. Whether you want to fling open the doors to a world-class surfing beach or retreat with countryside views, we’ve got the perfect self-catering cottage from where to enjoy your active family adventures.

Take a look at our family friendly eateries and our article on a family day out in St Ives for more inspiration for your holiday.

By: Jessica Colliver On:28th June 2015
Categories:Family Friendly,Local Area,Things to Do

Toddler Friendly Cornwall

8th April 2015

Cornwall is the perfect destination for holidays with toddlers. Bring buckets, spades, wellies and waterproofs, and you can hit the beaches, woodland and wide open spaces for all sorts of family fun. From crabbing to kite flying, here are 10 of our top toddler friendly experiences and activities:

1: Go Rockpooling

Take your fishing nets down to the rocky shoreline to search for starfish, sea anemones, crabs and crustaceans, and see if you can identify different types of seaweed from bladderwrack to sea oak. Our favourite rockpooling beaches are Godrevy (by the lighthouse), Trebarwith Strand and Bedruthan Steps.

Enjoy rockpooling at Gwithian, Cornwall. https://carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Rockpooling at Gwithian

2: Go bodyboarding

There are few better thrills than whooshing along on a wave, and even toddlers can paddle out catch the white water on a foam bodyboard. Never go out of your depth and always bodyboard between the flags on a lifeguarded beach. Try Porthmeor, Gwithian or Porthtowan.

Toddlers will love experiences of body boarding in Cornwall. https://carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Toddlers love body boarding!

3: Go crabbing

Dangle a crab line over the harbour wall at Hayle and see if you can haul in a crab. You can buy a crab line complete with hooks and a net for bait, or make one using string and a wire hook weighted down with a pebble. Beware of toddlers by steep drops and slippery steps at the edge of the water.

4: Build a sandcastle

A bucket and spade will keep a toddler amused for hours on the beach. Whether you make a fortress, a boat or a sand sculpture, digging in the sand is simply what tots love to do most. As well as castles with moats, we like to build sand boats and wait for the tide to come in and cast us out to sea.

5: Take the train to St Ives

Enjoy one of the most scenic train rides in the UK on the coastal railway between St Erth and St Ives. Toddlers will love spotting boats, the lighthouse and surfers against the gob-smacking backdrop of St Ives Bay, and an all-day ranger ticket means you can travel up and down the line as many times as you like (great for a rainy day activity).

Scenic train link from Carbis Bay to St Ives, a must for guests of https://carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Scenic train to St Ives

6: Hunt for beach treasure

Scour the shore for shells, driftwood, feathers and treasure washed in by the waves.  Turn your collection into a game for toddlers by laying out 10 different items on the sand, from limpet shells to mermaids’ purses, then take one item away at a time, and see if the children can identify which one is missing.

Hunt for treasures on the beach with the children during your stay in Cornwall. This Seashore guide is perfect for little people. One of our top ten toddler friendly experiences in Cornwall.  https://carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Hunt for beach treasure

7: Fly a kite

There is nothing as simple and exhilarating as flying a kite on a blustery day. Pick up a one-string stunt kite, or try harnessing the elements with a dual-stringed power kite. Our favourite kite-flying beaches are St Ives Bay, Kennack Sands (on the Lizard) and Mawgan Porth.

Kite flying on the beach in Cornwall. https://carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Kite flying on the beach

8: Pick mussels

Turn a rockpool ramble into a family foraging excursion, when you pluck mussels off the rocks at the lowest point of the tide. Kids love filling buckets with their finds, scrubbing off the barnacles and beards, then putting them into a pot for tea. (Always pick mussels in a month with an ‘r’ in it, as there is less bacteria in the water and the mussels aren’t breeding.)

Mussels clinging to a rock in Carbis Bay. Only pick mussels during a month with an "R" in it. https://carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Mussels cling to a rock on Carbis Bay beach.

9: Follow the woodland trail

Crunch through leaves, picnic by the river, play in the park and tuck into cake in the family friendly café – Cardinham Woods is the perfect place to take wild toddlers at any time of year.

10: Walk in the footsteps of giants

Walk in the footsteps of a legendary giant when you cross the causeway to the sea-wrapped castle of St Michael’s Mount. Hunt for the giant’s stone heart etched in a cobbled pathway, climb to the castle turrets and return by boat once the tide has come in.

Carbis Bay Holidays offer a superb range of family accommodation in and around St Ives, Cornwall. Our toddler-friendly cottages come equipped with the likes of travel cots, toys, stair gates and highchairs.

You may also wish to read our recommendations for great family days out and buggy friendly walks in Cornwall.

By: Jessica Colliver On:8th April 2015
Categories:Family Friendly,Things to Do

Wildlife Charter For Guests

12th February 2015

Our Wildlife Charter outlines what you can do, as a guest, to help us protect our wildlife…

We are continually working to make Carbis Bay Holidays more eco-friendly, but we need your help to promote biodiversity, by protecting eco systems, wildlife and rare plants.

The Wildlife Charter below outlines some recommended tips on how you can help:

  • Please enjoy the variety of plants and wildlife around our area, but do stay on nature trails where they are provided and do not disturb wildlife.
  • Fires can be as devastating to wildlife and habitats.  Please be careful with matches and only use barbecues in designated areas.
    Please help us keep natural habitats clean by using the bins provided or taking your rubbish away and recycling at the nearest point.
  • Discover the beauty of the natural environment and take special care not to damage, destroy or remove features such as rocks, plants and trees.  They provide homes and food for wildlife, and add to everybody’s enjoyment of the countryside.
  • Everyone enjoys rock pooling, but if you’re lucky enough to catch something in your bucket please make sure you put it back in the same rock pool!
Father and son rockpooling. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Always replace creatures back into the same rockpool.

  • A farmer will normally leave a gate closed to keep livestock in, but may sometimes leave it open so they can reach food and water.  Leave gates as you find them or follow instructions on signs.
  • In fields where crops are growing, follow the paths wherever possible.
  • Use gates, stiles or gaps in field boundaries when provided – climbing over walls, hedges and fences can damage wildlife habitats as well as increase the risk of farm animals escaping.
  • By law, you must control your dog so that it does not disturb or scare farm animals or wildlife.  Everyone knows how unpleasant dog mess is and it can cause infections – so always clean up after your dog and get rid of the mess responsibly.
  • Ensure you follow The Countryside Code.
A dog enjoying a walk in the woods. The Wildlife Charter asks that you keep control of your dog while you explore the delights of Cornwall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

The Wildlife Charter asks that you keep control of your dog.

Thank you and happy exploring!

By: Amanda O'Toole On:12th February 2015
Categories:Holiday Ideas

Wildlife Species Cornwall

12th January 2015

There is a fantastic array of wildlife species to look out for whilst staying in Cornwall.  Many are available to spot year round, though others are limited to specific seasons.   If you wish to explore Cornwall’s wildlife species by rock pooling, bird watching, or a guided nature tour, we have put together a wildlife species list here for you to tick them off.

Here are some of our favourite marine life that can be spotted around St Ives and Carbis Bay:

The Grey Seal

Grey seals pop up almost everywhere year round so keep your eyes peeled.  You can often see them bobbing in the waves with you in Carbis Bay, or saying hello in the Harbour of St Ives as they wait for the fishermen to haul in their catch.  For a guaranteed spot and more close up sighting, you may wish to visit the Cornish Seal Sanctuary in nearby Gweek, which is the UK National Rescue Centre for Seals.

A friendly Seal bobbing in St Ives Harbour. Look out for this local wildlife species from the Harbour Wall. www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

Friendly Grey Seal in St Ives Harbour

Bottlenose Dolphin

The Bottlenose Dolphin can often be found in pods around the Cornish coast.  They particularly enjoy surfing and keeping people company as they undertake different water activities off our beaches.

Bottlenose Dolphins can be spotted frequently off the coast of Cornwall. They sometimes love to surf too! www.carbisbayholidays.co.uk

A pod of surfing dolphins on the Cornish coast

Have you spotted any marine wildlife during your holiday in Cornwall?  Do share with us.

By: Amanda O'Toole On:12th January 2015
Categories:Local Area
Porthrepta View - Compass Point Carbis Bay - For Sale

Properties For Sale

View properties offered as a Turn Key investment.

Dog friendly properties in cornwall

Dogs Stay for Free All Year!

Luxury homes for all the family, including your four legged friend.

mum and children on the beach

Family Friendly Holidays

Memories to be shared for a lifetime.

Close

Date not available

This date is currently not available.

Close

Terms and Conditions

Subscribe to our mailing list

Please enter your email below

Oops your session has timed out

Someone has started the process of booking your chosen property, for your chosen dates. They have 1 hour to complete the booking process however if they decide not to go ahead the property dates will be released and will be available to book.

If you would like to wait and see please submit your email address below and we will notify you if your chosen property and dates become available again.

Alternatively please search for your chosen dates and choose another property from our portfolio.

Oops someone else is booking this holiday!

Someone has started to book this property for the dates you have requested, they have 1 hour to complete the booking please choose alternative dates or another property.  Or please supply your email address below and we can email you should the dates be released again.

Thank you for your enquiry, unfortunately we appear to have a problem processing your booking online.

Please call the office on 01736 630 015 during office hours to book.

Our apologies for the inconvenience.

Back to property page