Porthminster Beach

Porthminster Beach, with its crescent of golden sand and crystal-clear waters, is one of Cornwall’s most cherished seaside destinations.

Located just a short walk from the heart of St Ives, this beach offers a Mediterranean feel in the heart of Cornwall, making it a must-visit for anyone holidaying in the area.

Whether you’re seeking relaxation on the beach, a dip in the sea, or a dining experience with stunning views, Porthminster Beach provides the perfect backdrop for an unforgettable holiday.

Discovering Porthminster Beach

Porthminster Beach is renowned for its almost tropical appearance, thanks to its fine, white sand and calm, turquoise waters.

Sheltered by the headland and warmed by the Gulf Stream, the beach enjoys a microclimate that often brings sunshine and mild temperatures.

This makes it an ideal spot for sunbathing, swimming, and enjoying a variety of water sports.

A Family-Friendly Haven

The beach’s gentle slope into the sea and lifeguard patrols during the summer months make it a safe and welcoming environment for families.

Children can paddle and play with ease, while adults relax on the sand or take a leisurely swim in the clear waters.

Culinary Delights

Porthminster Beach is not just about its stunning landscape; it also hosts one of St Ives’ most acclaimed seafood restaurants.

Positioned right on the beach, with panoramic views across St Ives Bay to Godrevy Lighthouse, the Porthminster Beach Café offers a dining experience that is hard to beat.

Here, you can enjoy fresh, local seafood and other Cornish delights, all prepared with a creative twist.

Planning Your Visit

Getting There

Porthminster Beach is easily accessible from St Ives town centre, with a scenic walk leading directly to the beach.

If you’re driving, St Ives can be reached from the A30, and there are several car parks in the town.

However, parking can be limited in peak season, so using public transport or the park-and-ride services from nearby Lelant is recommended.

Facilities and Amenities

The beach is well-equipped with facilities to ensure a comfortable visit, including toilets, beach shops for essentials, and hire services for deck chairs and water sports equipment.

There’s also a putting green nearby, offering fun for all the family.

Respect the Environment

Porthminster Beach, like many in Cornwall, is a precious natural habitat.

Visitors are encouraged to respect the environment by using the bins provided, staying off the dunes, and being mindful of marine life when swimming or taking part in water sports.

Maximising Your Experience

Arrive Early or Late: To avoid the crowds and find a good spot on the beach, consider arriving early in the morning or later in the afternoon. The beach is particularly beautiful at sunset.

Explore the Area: Take the opportunity to explore the coastal path that leads from Porthminster around to other bays and beaches, offering stunning views and a chance to discover more of Cornwall’s rugged coastline.

Try Local Seafood: Don’t miss out on dining at the Porthminster Beach Café or other nearby eateries, where the focus is on fresh, local produce and seafood.

Tips for Your Visit

Check the Tide Times: The beach can look very different depending on the tide, so check the tide times to plan your visit accordingly.

Stay Safe in the Sun: The Cornish sun can be stronger than you might expect, especially on clear days. Ensure you have sufficient sun protection, including sunscreen, a hat, and a beach umbrella.

Dogs on the Beach: Note that there are restrictions on dogs on the beach during the peak season (from Easter to October). Always check the latest guidelines before you visit with your furry friend.

Nearby Attractions

St Ives Town: Explore the narrow cobbled streets of St Ives, filled with galleries, shops, and cafes. The town is renowned for its vibrant art scene, including the Tate St Ives and the Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden.

Carbis Bay: Another stunning nearby beach worth visiting, Carbis Bay offers a more secluded setting with equally beautiful sands and waters.

The South West Coast Path: For the adventurers, the coastal path provides extensive routes for walking and exploring the natural beauty of Cornwall’s coastline.


Porthminster Beach stands out as a jewel in Cornwall’s crown, offering a slice of paradise for beach lovers, families, and foodies alike. Its blend of natural beauty, safe swimming waters, and exceptional dining makes it an essential part of any holiday to St Ives.

Whether you’re laying back on the soft sands, enjoying the culinary offerings, or simply soaking up the scenic views, Porthminster Beach promises a day of relaxation and indulgence in one of the UK’s most picturesque settings.