The beautiful Roseland Peninsula is home to one of the most beautiful rural villages in all of Cornwall: Portscatho. From local vantage points, you can see miles of coastline, drink a pint of beer while taking in the salt sea air, or enjoy freshly caught fish with chips. There are even more things to do in this relaxing seaside town, so read on for just a taste.
Portscatho in a nutshell
Portscatho sits in a small cove sheltered from the winds. For this reason, it was a valuable harbor for 18th and 19th century shippings concerns, particularly fleets of ships fishing for pilchard. The area is still an active fishing zone today, though fishing is only a small part of the modern economy.
The natural protection of the cove makes the beaches of Portscatho the perfect place for a family getaway. Much of the village today is dedicated to tourism, and the classic cottages Portscatho has for booking will be the perfect center for your Cornwall holiday.
If you’re interested in natural history, the Royal Cornwall Museum is a great place to visit. This museum has the distinction of being the oldest museum in England. If your tastes run to things nautical, try the National Maritime Museum with its interactive displays.
Roam around a castle
England’s King Henry VIII, famed for his many wives and the unfortunate ends that several of them met with, built two castles in the area in the 16th century. They sit on either side of the Fal Estuary and were designed to protect the inland from invasions by Spain or France.
Today, the St. Mawes Castle and Pendennis Castle are beautifully preserved examples of 16th century architecture. You can easily spend a day roaming these stone wonders and learning about the culture, architecture, and politics of centuries gone by.
Lounge on the beach
The calm waters of Roseland Peninsula are the perfect place to spend the day. And you should visit Pendower Beach if you have children. This lovely sandy beach has plenty of parking and toilet facilities, and it also won the Marine Conservation Society’s Good Beach Guide Recommendation.
If you like exploring, visit the Great Molunan beach. This sheltered cover offers lots of places for the curious to explore. If you want to be alone, try Carne Beach. This is a favorite spot for walkers, and dogs are permitted to roam the beach all year round.
Get out on the water
Portscatho is the perfect jumping off point for anyone who loves water sports. There are excellent canoeing, sailing, and kayaking facilities available, including sailing classes if you want to improve your skills.
If you prefer a larger boat, you can see gorgeous views of the water from the St. Mawes or King Harry Ferries which run all year round. There are also excellent yacht facilities if you prefer to bring your own watercraft.
Watch the stars
The world is so brightly lit these days that it can be hard to get a good glimpse of the universe around us. In Cornwall, this isn’t so much of a problem. The Roseland Peninsula in particular has very little light pollution, and it’s one of the country’s best spots for stargazing.
There’s a lot to see with just the naked eye, but if you use some binoculars or bring a telescope, the views will be unforgettable.
Eat and drink
No holiday is complete without food and drink, and there are plenty of great places to try in the Portscatho area. Try Cafe Chandlers early in the day to enjoy coffee with homemade pastries or scones. Check out the Rosevine for fresh food with great views, or the Watch House if you fancy some takeaway fish and chips.
The Royal Standard pub is a popular local favorite for drinks and relaxation. For something a bit more upscale, try the St. Mawes Hotel and enjoy cocktails while you look out one the sea. Wherever you choose to dine or drink, it’s sure to be the perfect end to a perfect day relaxing in Cornwall.