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moderate to challenging

Traveller Rating


  • self guided cycle
  • 8 nights in hotels and guesthouses
  • 8 Breakfasts

9 Days£1380GBP


Trip Code: CCC

Trip highlights

  • Padstow’s old harbour and Rick Stein’s famous restaurant
  • Visit magical St Ives, a town of art, ice creams and fish ‘n’ chips
  • Stunning coastline of beaches, coves and cliffs
  • Includes good quality bike hire for 7 days
  • Plenty of time to see Cornwall the way you want

Cornwall is very much a holiday county with beaches, famous cornish pasties, pirates, shipwrecks and the roaring sea. This bike tour is so much more, it is a journey through a varying landscape of inland heaths and downs, rolling hills and tumbling coastlines. There are sheltered coves and beautiful rivers, castles and gardens to visit, some flat trails away from the traffic and then some hilly minor road routes. Cyclists for this ride need to be fairly fit. The daily rides are kept relatively short; the longest day is only approx 30 miles (50km) however it can be windy. This allows plenty of time to see Cornwall the way that you want to!



Starting Point:


Finishing Point:


Make your own way to Padstow. The town is named after St. Petroc who came here circa A.D 500. The church of St Petroc is one of a group of three said to have been founded by the Saint. It is quite large and mostly of 13th and 14th century date. The old harbour usually has a nice ensemble of boats including the old pilot vessels. Nice pub fayre and a Rick Stein café/restaurant, not forgetting Rick's Fish and Chip shop and ‘National Lobster hatchery.’ Accommodation: Our normal inn dates back to the 14th century and is the oldest existing pub in the town.

Meals:  Nil

Your bikes will be delivered to you this morning where you have them for the next 7 days. From Padstow, cycle along the coast past Mawgan Porth and Watergate Bay. Passing by the surfing beaches and town of Newquay and follow coastal lanes to the village of Crantock with its pretty church and round garden, before arriving at Perranporth. It is believed that Saint Piran founded a church at Perranzabuloe near Perranporth in the seventh century. Buried under sand for many centuries, it was unearthed early in the twentieth century, but again left to the mercy of the sands in the 1970s. Otherwise this is a pretty small resort with a very long 3 mile beach, sea stacks and shrieking gulls. The ride between Padstow and Newquay can be very busy in summer, so alternatively you have the option to cycle an inland route which goes through St Columb Major. Adding 12 km/7.5 miles to the day’s total, but it is faster and flatter. Accommodation: The 4* country house offers all rooms ensuite. The country house is situated in its own grounds overlooking Perranporth and is only minutes from the coastal footpaths. It is a steep ride out of Perranporth to the accommodation, and if you want to have a meal.

Meals:  B

The ride today passes many old tin mine workings riding to the village of St.Agnes, there are then a couple of steep descents and ascents into the bays at Porthtreath and Porthtowan, before rolling along the coast road towards Hayle with a possible stop at Godvrey Head. Skirting the Hayle Estuary, which is noted for its seabirds and waders, you then roll past beautiful Carbis Bay to reach the town of St Ives. This dates back to AD460, when the missionary St. Ia, daughter of an Irish chieftain, landed here and gave her name to the settlement. Protected from Atlantic storms, St Ives was once the most important fishing port in Cornwall, but like elsewhere on the surrounding coast, by the beginning of the 20th century, the fish stocks became depleted and the fishing fleet largely disappeared. However as early as 1811 Turner visited to paint the seascapes and by the late 1880s there were several artists installed and the town became famous for its vibrant artists’ colony. This perhaps reached its peak during the late 1940s and the 1950s. Today their work can be seen in the St Ives Tate Gallery, the Barbara Hepworth Museum and the Bernard Leach Gallery. Accommodation: We use several guesthouses in the busy town of St Ives, one is a 4 * and the other a boutique B&B. If St Ives is full you may be booked into Carbis Bay a 10 minute ride away.

Meals:  B

Cycling steeply out of St. Ives, the roads take you along a classic Cornish scenery of small farms with ancient drystone walls, mine engine houses and chimneys. You could stop for a coffee in the attractive village of Zennor, famous for its mermaid legend. You could take the road out to Cape Cornwall then check out the landscape, visit the tin mining museum at Geevor or continue on perhaps having a snack at the old village of St. Just before reaching Land’s End. Have an ice cream at ‘The First and The Last‘ store. This is England’s most westerly point, it is possible to see the Isles of Scilly on a clear day. Cycle on passing a possible diversion road to the tiny beach at Porthcurno which is home to the Minack Theatre, although this interesting place is usually closed during the day but Porthcurno, has a wonderful bay in a magnificent location. Continue along the coast road passing some ancient remains, and through the semi tropical valley at Lamorna. The route runs down the coast to Mousehole (pron’Mowzl’), another picture postcard village, with a history of pilchard fishing and now has a small artists community. You then pedal through Newlyn and Penzance which are quite built up being ports as well has important vacation destinations in their own right. Although Newlyn has some nice galleries, Penzance, has more attractions including some Georgian and Regency housing, the exuberant Egyptian House, Maritime Museum and National Lighthouse Museum. Accommodation: In Penzance our normal B&B is a family run guesthouse which has lovely ensuite rooms. All original doors and features where possible have been retained. It is situated in a large tree lined avenue just off from the seafront, there is a small garden for guests use on those sunny Cornish days.

Meals:  B

A shortish day allowing you to pay St. Michaels Mount a proper visit. From Penzance there is a flattish but dramatic ride around Mounts Bay with views over to St. Michael’s Mount with its tidal causeway. You maybe able to fit a visit in with the tide times, otherwise you can go by boat. The road then goes inland before you reach Porthleven, another charming fishing village, whose harbour is closed by wooden baulks during storms with good restaurants and a couple of nice pubs. You can enjoy fine seafood at the inn or venture along the quay to a famous seafood restaurant. Accommodation: We stay in a 4 * Inn by the quayside with old stone flags on the floor and oak beams and wood panelling in profusion. The bar retains the ambience of an old fisherman’s pub, and offers friendly service in traditional surroundings. If you are there on a Saturday there will often be entertainment as well.

Meals:  B

Pedal out inland to cross Lizard Point avoiding the steepest coastal hills you pass the heath of Goonhilly Down to St Keverne to view its pleasant village square and remarkable churchyard where over 400 shipwreck victims of the nearby Manacle Reef are buried. Continue to Helford and round the pretty villages that surround the Helford River. Frenchmans Creek here was made famous by the writer Daphne Du Maurier. Here you need to take a ferry across the Helford River. On the other side you could drop into the famous Trebah Gardens, before continuing through to the pretty cove at Swanpool for a coffee or an icecream. Finally you roll into Falmouth, home to the world’s third largest natural harbour and the National Maritime Museum. Accommodation: We use a number of guesthouse/B&B's in this busy town.

Meals:  B

You start with a ferry ride from Falmouth to St. Mawes, a remote pleasant little yachting harbour at the end of the Roseland Peninsula, which boasts a clover leaf castle built by Henry VIII in 1542. Today is hilly as you visit various attractive coves on the route, you are cycling across the pretty Roseland Peninsular passing through Veryan (with its round houses) Portloe and Portholland before rolling past Caerhays Castle and beaches. Then along country lanes with some steep hills to the old fishing and smuggling village of Mevagissey. The hilly route continues to your overnight stop in Charlestown. This attractive old port was used as a location for filming Poldark and Jane Austin’s Persuasion. Usually there is at least one square ridded vessel being worked on in the old dock, which gives the place an old fashion air. There is also a shipwreck museum. Today or tomorrow you could visit the Eden Project, a biosphere reserve with tropical gardens. Accommodation: Your accommodation tonight is in an Inn that offers a warm welcome. Charlestown is a Conservation Area of special local importance.

Meals:  B

Heading towards the Eden Project, in the old China Clay pits, you avoid the busiest roads, to ascend the quiet lane through Tregrehan Mills to join a rough track that goes to the project. At a junction if you want you can do an excursion off along the Clay Trails, a landscape well known for its clay tips and pits, created by the 250 year old clay mining industry. This striking and dramatic scenery, visible from distances of many miles. You can ride them, passing the Eden Project and then into the beautiful UNESCO ‘World Heritage Site’ valley before the pretty village of Luxulyan. Then onto Bodmin which has an 18th century gaol where you could break for lunch passing the Bodmin & Wenford Railway, where steam locomotives are still chugging away. Leaving Bodmin, your tour ends with a gentle cycle along the Camel Trail. Following the river towards Padstow and you have now completed the loop. Your bikes will be picked up late afternoon from your accommodation. Accommodation: Our normal inn dates back to the 14th century and is the oldest existing pub in the town.

Meals:  B

Depart Padstow after breakfast.

Meals:  B



The map and elevation chart are for illustrative purposes only and meant to provide general guidelines.
On self guided trips, actual route information provided before departure will be more detailed.


  • 8 breakfasts
  • 8 nights accommodation in small hotels and guesthouses on a twin share basis with ensuite facilities where available
  • Hybrid Bike Hire for 7 days: delivered to your hotel on Day 2 & picked up from your accommodation. E-Bikes on request (supplement applies)
  • Helmet hire: For hygiene purposes we do recommend that you bring your own. Request at time of booking
  • locks, spare tube/repair kit and a day bag
  • One piece of luggage per person transferred from Inn to Inn, not exceeding 20kg
  • Information pack including route notes and maps

  • Lunch, dinner and drinks
  • Entrance fees
  • Electric bike hire & panniers, ask for details
  • Travel insurance
  • Travel to the start and from the end point of the trip
  • Personal expenses such as laundry and phone calls
  • Unscheduled transfers required during the trip
  • Excess luggage
  • Guide - this is a self guided cycling holiday
  • A supplement will apply if you are travelling solo or book a single room


Bike information


moderate to challenging


Generally a Moderate tour, with some more challenging hills on occasion. The terrain in Cornwall is quite hilly, especially in and out of the coastal towns and villages. Other sections such as the Camel Trail are almost flat. Reasonable fitness is required. *Please note that by UK law, you can ride an electric bike if you’re 14 or over.

Departure dates

Daily from 1 Mar to 19 Oct


High Season
Minor changes may apply to 2025 departures.
By UK law, you can ride an electric bike if you're 14 or over.

Priceper person from


Options & Supplements*
  • e-bike supplementGBP£90
  • Single Supplement 2024GBP£700
  • Single Supplement 2025GBP£820
  • Solo Traveller Supplement 2024GBP£820
  • Solo Traveller Supplement 2025GBP£810
*Prices listed are per person

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes it can be hilly in Cornwall when you're going up and down to various bays. There are lots of small hills and also some quite long ones. Make sure to get your legs fit for this ride.

Our first choice of accommodation varies from an upgraded, well established inn to boutique coastal hotels and independent guest houses - all with a high standard and their own local character that adds to your experience. We do use a whole host of properties in Cornwall as it is a popular place, so we may at times have to use other properties. We however always do try to book interesting accommodations for you.

Yes it is possible to upgrade your standard bicycle hire to an electric bike on this cycling holiday in Cornwall. The fee for this is mentioned in the Departure Dates section on this page. Please request this with us as early as possible as there is a limited supply of e-bikes. We advise informing us as early as possible if you would like this as it's not unknown for the shop to exhaust its e-bike supply.

Quite often the tools supplied with hire bikes are basic. Because of this we would recommend you bringing a small bike tool if you have one.

Yes, you should be able to replace and inflate an innertube, repair a puncture, place a derailed chain on sprockets and do adjustments to brakes and seat tube etc.

Yes that is fine, the accommodations will tell you where to put them overnight, but please remember to lock them. This also applies to the hire bikes.

For the majority of this Cornwall cycling trip we have chosen for you a nice selection of roads by or closest to the sea, apart from where you turn inland towards Bodmin. In high season, this section of roads can be busy with traffic and care should be taken on bends and hills as the roads can be narrow.

Yes, there is time on this cycling holiday to spend time by the stunning beaches of Cornwall. Be careful not to ride your bike on beaches or get sand in the chain, gears or hubs. You may be charged extra by the bike rental if this is the case.

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We've been walking and cycling the planet for over four decades and are passionate about delivering exceptional service. Combined, we’ve travelled to virtually every corner of Europe, and are eager to share the many benefits of travelling on foot or by bike.

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Our well priced trips offer great value for money. Included in your package are comprehensive route notes, maps & guide books along with bag transfers and locally run accommodation. We take the stress out of organising your holiday.

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We have been operating active self guided holidays since 1973. We handle all the necessary logistics so that you can relax and explore your destination at your own pace. Many of our tours depart daily, giving you even greater flexibility.