Calmly watching the sun sink ethereally beneath the horizon, alone or with your favourite person, is one of the best ways to end a day spent in south Cornwall. The serenity that comes with watching the sky slide into a kaleidoscope of colours, while seabirds slowly swoop overhead, makes the heart swell.
For all of us who live beside the sea, watching the sunset has become a ritual. It’s our method for seeking daily gratitude and connecting with Cornwall. Sunsets remind us that there will always be a moment every day that is beautiful and full of joy. To combine this with a setting that stirs the soul, or offers something delicious to eat or drink, is a real treat.
We’re lucky to have many places in the south of Cornwall that make beautiful spots from which to watch the sunset. Read about some of our favourites below and why we love these the most.
Grebe Beach, Durgan
A tucked-away slice of paradise hidden amongst the woodland of Helford River, Grebe Beach sunsets are tranquil and indulgent. During the summertime Grebe is the best spot to see the bioluminescent plankton that thrives in the brackish water of the Helford River. After the sun has disappeared the waves flash green and the adventurous can swim amongst it for a truly unique experience.
Park up at the National Trust Car Park, Bosveal, and carefully walk along the path leading down to the pebbly beach. Take mackerel pate and toast flatbread over a portable BBQ, Hidden Hut style, and celebrate the sunset with a fishy feast.
Please make sure to take your bbq equipment and litter home with you after finishing. Also take care, as an uneven, steep path leading down to the beach makes this a less-than-ideal spot for anyone unsteady on their feet.
Pendennis Point, Falmouth
Walk up from Falmouth town centre, past the docks and along the quiet wooded coastal path to Pendennis Point. Set up a picnic on the grassy bank and take in the gorgeous panoramic views that stretch from Gyllyngvase Beach to St Mawes and St.Anthony’s Lighthouse. Watch the fishing boats return from their day at sea and the paddleboarders ripple through the golden current.
Pandora Inn, Restronguet Creek
Restronguet Creek is a wide stretch of peaceful water bordered by rolling countryside, pebble beaches and some truly spectacular architectural gems.
Nestled on the water’s edge is The Pandora Inn, a 13th Century historic pub with a charming interior, delicious food and a long pontoon. Outside diners can delight in eating and drinking on the pontoon where tables perch above the water and offer an idyllic spot for al fresco dining, and watching the sunset with a local ale or glass of wine in hand. With its timeless creekside position, a visit to Pandora is almost like stepping back in time. If you’re looking for somewhere gorgeous to dine and end your day, head to The Pandora Inn.
On the Helford River on a paddle board or kayak
Soak up every second of the magical evening skies as you paddleboard or kayak around the unspoilt and sheltered Helford River. Meander your way down the still, shimmering water and watch the stars sparkle in the reflection of the creek. Keep your eyes peeled for wildlife such as egrets or cormorants returning home for the night, and soak in the silence of the sleeping river. Kayaks and paddleboards can be rented from Port Navas Yacht Club, Helford River Boats, or Sailaway St.Anthony.
On the coastal path between Swanpool and Maenporth Beach, Falmouth
The walk from Swanpool to Maenporth Beach is jaw-droppingly beautiful even at the rainiest of times. To take a stroll along the winding wild-flower pathways, with the surrounding foliage highlighted in the soft pink of a Cornish sunset, is something truly special. The 2.7km walk starts from the road leading up from Swanpool Beach. Choose to dine on a fish supper at Hooked on the Rocks overlooking Swanpool and take a post-dinner stroll to Maenporth, or start at Swanpool and end your walk with dinner at The Cove. Be sure to bring a torch if you are walking in the dark.