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The Ultimate Tidal Pools in Cornwall

Cornwall is a tapestry of ocean pockets, shingled coves, and picturesque rivers, just waiting to be explored. Dip your toe into the world of cold water swimming in Cornwall, with a visit to one of these six incredible tidal pools.


Head to Porthtowan, nestled on the north Atlantic coast, just west of St Agnes, for a gorgeous stretch of sand and sea. If you’re looking to avoid the crowds of beach-goers, head to the cliffs on the eastern side of Porthtowan Beach to discover a tidal pool with an intriguing history. 

From first glance, you may suspect this idyllic rockpool is the work of mother nature, but this swim spot was actually a man-made construction back in the early 1900s.

📷: Cornwall Guide


The fishing village of Mousehole is home to one of the most spectacular small tidal pools for cold water swimming in Cornwall. What makes this salt-water swim spot so special are the views it boasts.

Take the plunge into the still sea water, and enjoy uninterrupted 180° views across to The Lizard, and St Michael’s Mount.

📷: Zone One Arts


For a slightly larger, less secluded Cornish tidal pool, take a trip to Bude on the north coast. The popular seaside town has a semi-natural sea pool that has been a much-loved community spot for safe bathing and swimming since the 1930s. 

This pool looks much more polished and commercial than some of the more rugged spots, but it’s still free to enjoy – a great, accessible option if you’re taking children along.

📷: Bude Sea Pool


Treyarnon Bay

Wild swimmers will fall in love with the natural tidal pool at Treyarnon Bay, located near Padstow. Time your visit when the tide is out, and submerge yourself in the rock-enclosed waters, refreshed every tide change with the Atlantic swell. 

Well-located and easy to access, with parking and facilities nearby – take advantage of the views across the ocean and admire a breathtaking north Cornish sunset.

📷: Explore Cornwall

Chapel Rock

Black and white marks the spot of this beautiful tidal pool. Look out for a Cornish flag flapping in the breeze on the far side of Chapel Beach near Perranporth.

A popular discovery amongst beach-goers and children, let the sunshine naturally heat the water for a less chilly experience!

📷: Explore Cornwall


Clamber down the steep paths at Nanjizal to discover a magical lagoon, abandoned off the coast, just around the corner from Land’s End. Known by the locals as ‘The Song Of The Sea Cave’, this naturally formed arch inside a cave is home to two natural pools.

It’s one of the most idyllic, peaceful, and pure spots for cold water swimming in Cornwall, making it to many of the residents’ Cornish bucket lists.

📷: Third Eye Traveller

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