There isn’t much better than a spring picnic – all of your favourite things to eat and drink in a wicker hamper, a flask of something warm and a cosy blanket to sit on. There are plenty of pretty picnic spots within easy stride of Mawgan Porth – some just on our doorstep, and some a little further afield if you fancy building up an appetite – here are some of our favourites to inspire you…
Mawgan Porth Beach
If you don’t fancy a long walk before your lunch, then nestle down in the dunes of Mawgan Porth Beach for your picnic instead. It’s easy to get down onto the beach from here. Head out of the hotel through the fire exit at the entrance to the spa. Go through the wooden gate and turn right onto Tredragon Road. Take the first left down the side of the Scarlet Hotel, and keep going until you hit the coast path. Here,turn right and follow the path along until it turns back on itself over a small bridge, then down some steps onto the sand.
Head along the coast path towards Watergate Bay and you’ll find lots of picturesque spots on the headland where you can to stop, take in the view and tuck into some lunch. The little-frequented Beacon Cove is worth a visit.
I know we’re biased, but the walk along the coast path to Bedruthan Steps really is one of the most beautiful Cornwall has to offer. Fact! The steps – jagged and dramatic outcrops of slate – were said by an inventive 19th century tourism official to be the stepping stones of a giant called Bedruthan, and the legend has stuck. Getting down to the beach means negotiating a steep staircase, but the quiet beauty of the place makes it well worth the climb back up. Remember not to let yourself get cut off by the tide.
Japanese Gardens, St Mawgan
The gardens are on oasis of Eastern order and tranquility in the middle of the teaming, rustic Cornish countryside. Passing through the gates really feels like entering another realm. For your bite to eat, choose from the Water Gardens, Stroll Garden and Zen Garden. There are spectacular Japanese maples, radiant azaleas and rhododendrons, ornamental grasses and a bamboo grove. Soak up the tranquil atmosphere from the Zen viewing house, where you can admire the horticultural splendour, contemplate the rock scape and savour the many different scents of your surroundings.
Sitting on the Bridge at St Mawgan
If you head into the centre of St Mawgan Village, you can spread your blanket on the lowwall that overlooks the River Menalhyl, just in front of the village school. This shady spot is the perfect place for a relaxing en plein air repast as you listen to the river wander by.
Head the other way from Mawgan Porth, past Bedruthan Steps, and you’ll find Constantine Bay and the remains of a prehistoric cliff fort. This is a good walk in autumn, when the stubble in the clifftop fields provides rich pickings for the migrant pipits and buntings. If you’re lucky you might spot a merlin hunting them overhead, and at low tide you may even see seals around Trethias. The bay itself is a beauty, with its sweeping arc of soft pale sand.
Mother Ivy’s Bay
Walk a little further along the dramatic cliffs and headlands and you’ll reach Mother Ivy’s. The bay is a 20-minute walk from the car park at Harlyn, which means it’s usually quiet and peaceful – the perfect place for a spot of lunch. Cushioned from the wind by the Merope Rocks, Mother Ivey’s Bay lies in a sheltered spot framed by stunning coastal scenery. There are no toilets or cafes here, which means the bay rarely gets too crowded, even on the busiest of summer days.
If this sounds like your perfect spring time activity – why not have a look at our Spring Explorer Break where along with a relaxing two-night stay with dinner and champagne cocktails, we’ll provide a beautiful picnic and explorer guides so that you can really make the most of the Cornish coast in spring.