Merlin’s Cave

Merlin’s Cave, nestled beneath the dramatic cliffs of Tintagel Castle on Cornwall’s rugged north coast, is shrouded in myth and legend.

This sea cave, accessible at low tide, is intrinsically linked to the tales of King Arthur and the wizard Merlin, offering visitors a magical step back into Britain’s mystical past.

Whether you’re drawn by the allure of Arthurian legend, the stunning natural beauty, or simply the thrill of exploring a sea cave, Merlin’s Cave is a must-visit for anyone holidaying in Cornwall.

Discovering Merlin’s Cave

The cave stretches approximately 100 metres through Tintagel Island, from the Atlantic Ocean to the sandy beach on the other side, allowing visitors to walk through at low tide.

Its association with the legend of Merlin adds an enchanting layer of intrigue, making it a popular spot for those captivated by Cornwall’s rich tapestry of history and folklore.

Highlights of Merlin’s Cave

Exploration: At low tide, the cave is fully accessible for visitors to walk through, explore its nooks, and enjoy the unique atmosphere of this natural wonder.

Photography: The cave, with its striking rock formations and play of light on the water, offers fantastic photo opportunities, especially with the backdrop of Tintagel Castle above.

Legend and Lore: Embrace the magic of the place, where legend has it Merlin once lived, adding a touch of enchantment to your visit.

Stunning Views: The approach to the cave offers breathtaking views of the Cornish coastline, Tintagel Castle ruins, and the Atlantic Ocean.

Planning Your Visit

Getting There

Merlin’s Cave is situated below the cliffs of Tintagel Castle, which is accessible from the village of Tintagel.

Visitors can park in the village before making the scenic walk down to the castle and the cave below.

For those using public transport, Tintagel is well served by local bus routes.

Tickets and Opening Times

Access to Merlin’s Cave is free and possible during low tide. It’s essential to check tide times before planning your visit to ensure the cave is accessible.

While the cave itself is free to enter, there may be an admission charge for Tintagel Castle, managed by English Heritage.

Safety and Tips

Check Tide Times: The cave is only accessible at low tide. Check the local tide times to ensure you can safely enter and exit the cave.

Wear Appropriate Footwear: The cave floor can be wet and slippery, and the approach involves some uneven terrain, so sturdy shoes are recommended.

Respect the Environment: Help preserve the beauty and integrity of the cave by taking any litter back with you and not disturbing the natural formations.

Maximising Your Experience

Visit Early or Late: To avoid the crowds and experience the cave at its most atmospheric, try to visit early in the morning or later in the afternoon.

Explore the Surroundings: Allocate time to explore the ruins of Tintagel Castle and enjoy the coastal walks around the area for a full experience of the landscape’s historical and natural beauty.

Local Legends: Enhance your visit by learning about the legends and history associated with Merlin, King Arthur, and Tintagel before your visit.

Nearby Attractions

Tintagel Castle: The legendary birthplace of King Arthur, offering dramatic views, fascinating ruins, and a rich history to explore.

Tintagel Village: Discover the charm of Tintagel village, with its Arthurian-themed shops, cosy cafés, and local craft stores.

St Nectan’s Glen: A beautiful woodland walk leads to this spectacular waterfall and hermitage, said to be a site of spiritual significance since the Arthurian times.


Merlin’s Cave offers a unique blend of natural beauty, legend, and history, making it a captivating destination for holidaymakers in Cornwall.

Whether you’re exploring the cave itself, soaking up the myths surrounding it, or simply enjoying the stunning coastal scenery, a visit to Merlin’s Cave is an unforgettable experience that brings the magic of Cornwall’s past to life.