Gwithian and Godrevy Beaches

December 17, 2014 by becca.lazar No Comments

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Gwithian and Godrevy are technically one beach. A tidal beach, at which, 3 miles of golden sand that spans from the opening of the River Hayle, all the way to Godrevy Head. Backed by wild, grass flecked sand dunes, it’s almost impossible to run out of things to do. The tide recedes to reveal large areas of rock pools and caves at the Godrevy end, which provide hours of exploration for children. Godrevy Head lighthouse, the real life inspiration for Virgina Woolfe’s novel To The Lighthouse watches over the shores from the Eastern headland.

Gwithian is a bit of a surfer’s paradise. It is one of the best areas to catch holiday waves, for beginners and veterans alike. Exposed to the Atlantic Swell, there’s almost always something rideable out there and when the swell picks up there are long, gorgeous waves that break at a leisurely pace, giving beginners lots of time to practice standing up.

Because of this, it is the perfect place to learn to surf. With a gently sloping shore, you have to go a long way out before you’re out of your depth.

Two surf schools and equipment hire companies operate at Gwithian. Although the most of the beach’s facilities are all to one end of the beach, there’s a definite east versus west divide. To the west you’ll find the well-known Sunset Surf Café, who are a slick operation with their own branded merchandise and at the other end of the beach there’s the Gwithian Academy of Surfing, whose hire is cheaper, for longer. Their surf lessons are also better value for money, if we’re going to quibble about it.photo 1

There are a number of parking options. Next to the Sunset Surf Café, there’s a large car park that operates a pay and display policy over the summer months. At the other end of the beach there’s a National Trust car park, as well as a second car park up on the headland. You’re spoilt for choice.

Food wise, there are café’s situated next to each car park, but as there’s a short walk through the dunes from your car to the beach, a little bit of a walk back to the facilities. Next to the National Trust car park there’s the Godrevy Beach Café, who boast a fantastic lunch menu with ‘rapsicles’ for the kids and lots of goodies baked on the premises.

The Sunset Surf Café is the obvious choice, back at the other end of the beach. A licenced bar, they also locally source their seasonal ingredients.

But there’s another gem hidden in the dunes that has given us surfers, at Cornish Holiday Cottages, the necessary sustenance needed after a hard surf: that gem is The Jam Pot. Housed in an almost 100-year-old Coastguard lookout, the ‘Pot’ offers a range of home cooked snacks at very reasonable prices. A look on their website also adds some historical information to your beach visit.

If you’re lucky, bobbing up and down on your ‘swell board’, you may spy the odd seal: A large seal colony lives at Godrevy and the seals can be seen swimming in the sea or from the cliff top on their beach in breeding season.

So whether surfing is your thing, if exploring caves and rocky outcrops is your thing, or you prefer the simple pleasures of building sandcastles and sunbathing, Gwithian’s seemingly endless sand is a beautiful place to do it.

 

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