Taking your dog on holiday in Cornwall

Cornwall is a very dog friendly place. There are lots of attractions that welcome four legged friends and we’ve put together a list of just some of the places you can go.

Lulu our ten year old Weimaraner enjoying Gwithian beach

Cornish Seal Santuary

With 42 acres of land to enjoy, including woodlands, there is lots to excite your dog at the Cornish Seal Sanctuary. They have dog water bowls for four-legged friends, dog bins to dispose of waste and free degradable doggy bags – you can even take your dog on the Land Train!

They have doggy treats at reception and in past years they have run an annual Fun Dog Show. The gift shop also sells treats for your doggy friend.

There are a few areas you can’t take your dog – such as the cafe and the seal hospital – and you must keep your dog on a lead at all times.

Flambards

Flambards is one of Cornwalls most popular theme parks, with both indoor and outdoor attractions. With rollercoasters and log flumes, its great for dare devil kids (and adults), but also has less adrenaline focussed experiences, such as the walk-through dinosaur experience, the Victorian towns and the World War II exhibition.

Flambards welcomes well-behaved dogs and owners as long as you keep your dog on a short lead and do not take them into any undercover areas (dogs also cannot go on the rides).

Geevor Tin Mine

You can discover the story of the Cornish tin and copper mining industry at Geevor Tin Mine and walk through the tunnels of the 18th century Wheal Mexico Mine, where men worked 200 years ago. You can also visit the Hard Rock museum and The Dry – which is an evocative experience where you’ll see the changing room which was left exactly as it was when the last miners left in 1990. You’ll also see the Victory Shaft where men and women were lowered 480metres in a metal cage. The kids can have a go at mineral panning and there is a cafe and shop.

Although your four legged friend can’t go into the mine tunnels, they are welcome across the site and the team will be happy to provide drinking water.

Healey’s Cornish Cider Farm

Who likes a Rattlers? Come and visit the home of this iconic cider and find out how it’s made. Friendly dogs on a lead are very welcome. They can go everywhere you can go, and can join you on a tractor ride, with some small restrictions in the production areas. 

At Healey’s Cider Farm, you can find to about cider making in their barrel cellar, make friends with farm animals and ride through the orchard. Once you’ve done all that, you can settle down with a Cornish cream tea.

Bodmin and Wenford Railway

The Bodmin and Wenford Railway is 6½ miles long and runs from the 1950’s charm of Bodmin Parkway through to Boscarne Junction via the line’s principal station at Bodmin General.

A journey of the full length of the track is 13 miles takes around 2 hours by steam, or slightly less time on the Auto Train – as the locomotive does not have to change ends.

The majority of trains have a buffet and bar, serving hot and cold drinks, snacks, sweets and light refreshments.

They also sometimes run events, such as First-Class Dining Trains, Cornish cream tea or high tea trains, or the popular Steam, Beer and Jazz trains.

You can even book driver experiences where you get to take control of a heritage locomotive.

Buy a £1 ticket for your dog and he’ll be welcome to travel with you on the everyday service trains. Dog tickets entitle your pooch to paws-on-the-floor travel. (They ask you to ensure your dog does not travel on the seats, not even on a blanket) Dogs are welcome throughout the station and on board trains (except around the on-train bar area, or where food is served). Assistance dogs only, are permitted on their Dining or Cream Tea Trains, and evening special events.

Eden Project

The Eden Project is one of Cornwall’s most popular attraction with its three huge Rainforest and Mediterranean Biomes. Unfortunately dogs are not allowed inside the biomes, but if you’re willing to take turns waiting outside, you can still visit and there are miles are pathways through the gardens so they can get a good walk.

Newlyn Art Gallery

Newlyn Art Gallery & The Exchange offers a wide and varied exhibition programme across two sites (one in Newlyn the other in Penzance), presenting contemporary work in all media by regional, national and international artists, with a supporting programme of events.

Well-behaved dogs are welcome at both venues, but may not be allowed into the main gallery spaces for certain exhibitions

Cornwall Gold

Cornwall Gold is the home of the largest collection of jewellery and pearls in Cornwall. It is also the site of the historic Tolgus Mill where you can learn about the process of tin streaming and how tin ore recovered from the stream running through the park, is smelted on-site to create exquisite Cornish jewellery.

They also create stunning pearl jewellery onsite, and take commissions. You can pick your very own pearl from a shell in their Pick-a-Pearl experience. Choose an Akoya oyster and learn all about your pearl and what makes it unique. You can then choose the perfect setting for your pearl from a range of silver and gold pieces and watch as they expertly set it there and then.

Even if you’re not buying a piece you can visit the workshop.

For those who prefer teddy bears to rings, you can build a bear at their Bear Works. There’s also the opportunity to paint your own pottery.

The site prides itself on being dog friendly too.

Lappa Valley Steam Railway

Lappa Valley transports families on an exciting nostalgic steam train ride into a secret world of traditional fun and family adventures. Children will delight in the thrill of trains and boats, explore nature, let off steam in their outdoor spaces, before refuelling in comfort at the café.

Apart from the steam train, Lappa Valley boasts boats, crazy golf, indoor play and woodland walks.

Well behaved dogs on leads are welcome. They charge £1 per dog and they can go on the Steam Railway, boats, Newlyn Downs Branch Line and numerous nature walks. Assistance dogs are welcomed free of charge.

Tintagel

Tintagel Castle is the mythical birthplace of King Arthur.

Immerse yourself in history, myths and stunning scenery at Tintagel Castle set high on Cornwall’s rugged north coast. For the first time in more than 500 years, the two separated halves of Tintagel Castle were reunited in 2019, thanks to the breathtaking Tintagel Castle Bridge. The bridge allows you to cross the sea to visit the island where the rest of the remains of the 13th Century castle are – and take in the stunning views.

Tintagel say they love dogs! They are welcome everywhere – but please note there are lots of steps, cliff edges and nesting birds, so please keep them safe on leads. Water is available for dogs at the café on request.

The Lost Gardens Of Heligan

Heligan is one of the most mysterious estates in England. Lost to the brambles of time since the outbreak of WW1, this Sleeping Beauty was re-awakened in 1990 to become Europe’s largest garden restoration project. Today Heligan’s 200 acres are a paradise for the explorer, wildlife, plant lover and garden romantic.

 Victorian Productive Gardens and Pleasure Grounds beckon, along winding paths laid out over two centuries ago. The Jungle takes you on a sub-tropical journey through bamboo tunnels and under majestic tree ferns, giant rhubarb and bananas whilst the estate reveals a lost world of traditional and rare breeds, wildlife and ancient woodlands.

The Jungle sits in a steep-sided valley, creating a microclimate at least five degrees warmer than the Northern Gardens. Here the exotic palette of plants brought back from across the world, both by the intrepid Victorian plant hunters and more recent collectors, flourish before your eyes. Intimate pathways edged with sub-tropical plantings have been created through the heart of the valley and its watercourses, and a rope bridge now extends across it all; offering a whole new Jungle perspective.

The Lost Gardens offer a perfect walk for you and your four-legged friend, with miles of pathways and routes to explore. Dogs with well-behaved owners are welcome to the Gardens all year round! They even have a video showing you a dogs-eye view!

Beaches

Most beaches in Cornwall are dog friendly but please make sure you know which ones are and which ones aren’t or you could find yourself landed with an on-the-spot fine!

Generally from September to June most beaches are fine for dogs to use. However, July to August they are usually banned from 10am to 6pm. This isn’t true of all beaches. Some have a year round ban. Cornwall Council have a useful guide – they list restrictions, but Top Tip – look at the maps. They may show sections of beach where the bans do not apply.

For example, our closest beach to Treglisson is three miles long and runs from Hayle Towans to Godrevy (includes Gwithian) The map shows restrictions at the two far ends of the beach, with the middle section unrestricted.

Cornwall Council do not run all beaches, many are private and their own rules will apply. Please read signs.

Please, please, please – keep your dogs on the lead until safely on the beach. Many excited dogs end up rushing off cliffs and many, sadly, don’t make it. Even dogs that are familiar with beaches could bolt or chase a bird or ball and end up in trouble.

There are many, many other dog friendly attractions in Cornwall. These are just a small selection. Have a wonderful holiday with your furry friend this year!