Blogs for July 2021

Our top tips for a summer day out in Cornwall

Posted on Wednesday 28th July, 2021

Our top tips for a summer day out in Cornwall

From country houses and castles to mines and museums, gardens and galleries to theme parks and railways – Cornwall has a wealth of attractions to choose from. Whether you’re visiting for a short break or happy to call this place home, make each day a discovery. 

Every destination featured on our site is a member of the Cornwall Association of Tourist Attractions (CATA). As a collective of almost 40 top attractions, we’ve been creating Cornwall’s best visitor experiences since 1974, working together to meet and raise industry standards. We’re passionate about Cornwall, and love inspiring visitors with ideas for new and varied experiences. Our aim is clear: to create quality days out that you’ll remember for years to come.

Here's some of our top tips for making the most of your day out at a tourist attraction in Cornwall:

  • You can often get a discounted ticket price if you buy online in advance – check attractions website for more information. With safety measures in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic, for many attractions, pre-booking is essential.

  • Cornwall has over 300 beaches to choose from – combine your day out at an attraction with a visit to a nearby beach. Find one at

  • Lots of our attractions are located around the Cornish coastline – combine your visit to a visitor attraction with a walk on the beautiful South West Coast Path. 

  • Eat lunch al fresco and enjoy a family picnic on your day out. Many tourist attractions are happy for you to bring your own lunches. 

  • Beat the unpredictable Cornish weather by looking for the Indoor Attractions symbol throughout the website and in our printed guide, found in racks at locations across Cornwall..

  • Lots of attractions will have resources to keep your kids happy – from trails and quizzes through to hands-on experiences like animal feeding. Ask at the ticket desk if there’s anything they can provide. The school holidays are often a great time to experience added extras as part of your visit.

  • Don’t forget a water bottle – you can ask for your reusable water bottle to be filled at all of our attractions.

  • Many of our attractions offer combined tickets or discount offers with other tourist attractions nearby – check their websites for more information.

  • Take your dog on a day out! Lots of our attractions welcome pets on leads. Look for the Dog Friendly icon throughout the guide or find dog friendly attractions on our website.

  • Many visitor attractions offer special offers, such as discounted return visits within a seven day period, locals tickets or annual passes. Look out for these offers on their websites!

Do get in touch with us if you have any top tips for making the most of your day out at a visitor attraction! 

What to do if you find a seal pup on the beach

Posted on Tuesday 27th July, 2021

What to do if you find a seal pup on the beach

It's THe Wildlife Trusts National Marine Week (24 July - 8 August 2021) and to mark this event, we're sharing some top tips from our friends at the Cornish Seal Sanctuary on what to do if you spot a seal pup on the beach here in in Cornwall.

The Cornish Seal Sanctuary is a charity that rescues and rehabilitate grey seals pup from around the Cornish coastline​ ​. Each season, the Sanctuary rehabilitates over 50 seal pups that have been rescued for various reasons, from malnourishment to being separated from their mum.

The Sanctuary also provides a permanent home to animals that need special care from their team of marine animal experts. When visiting the Sanctuary, you can experience wonderful marine animals up close and personal and learn all about their individual stories.

1. Do keep your distance 

If a pup has a fluffy white coat, it still needs its mother. She will have spotted you long before you saw her and she will hopefully be watching from a safe distance out at sea. A mum will only return to feed her pup if she thinks it is safe to do so.

2. Don’t touch the pup

It is a wild animal with sharp teeth. A mother may reject her pup if it smells of people, so keep downwind and out of sight.

3. Don’t put any seal back in the sea

A white coated pup spends most time out of water. All seals haul out onto land to rest, digest and socialise all year round.

4. Do take a good look from a distance

If the pup is alone, thin, injured or seems unwell (noisy breathing, coughing, runny nose) it may need help.

5. Do something about it

Telephone Cornish Seal Sanctuary for expert advice on 01326 221 361 or British Divers Marine Life Rescue on 01825 765 546 giving an accurate location.

The Cornish Seal Sanctuary is part of the SEALIFE Trust charity and couldn’t do their vital work without the support of the public.

Seal pups cost on average £2000 to go through rehabilitation – and this doesn’t include those that require special care, such as Ted who came to the sanctuary with a broken jaw and needed surgery or Harry who was so entangled in netting his wounds were life threatening.

The Sanctuary are very grateful for all their guests and donations received that help with the costs of pup rehabilitation and medical care for the resident animals.


Vicky Edwards interviews Paul Hunter, writer and director of CHARLIE & STAN at the Minack Theatre

Posted on Monday 26th July, 2021

Vicky Edwards interviews Paul Hunter, writer and director of CHARLIE & STAN at the Minack Theatre

CHARLIE & STAN -The greatest comedy duo that nearly was
presented by David Pugh, Told by an Idiot and Theatre Royal Bath Productions
THE MINACK THEATRE 1 – 12 August 2021
NATIONAL PRESS NIGHT Monday 2 August 2021

Second only to a Covid vaccination when it comes to welcome shots in the arm, a fabulously funny and heart-warming entertainment about the greatest comedy duo that nearly was is coming to town. Vicky Edwards catches up with Paul Hunter, writer and director of Charlie & Stan.

Like many aspiring performers, before his career took off Charlie Chaplin did numerous jobs, including a stint as a doctor's boy. His lowly position wouldn’t have allowed him to prescribe, but, had he been permitted to, the great entertainer surely would have advocated that laughter was the best medicine. And boy do we all need a hefty dose of glee just now.

Based on a true but largely unknown story, in 1910 the then unknown Charlie Chaplin and Stan Laurel set sail on board a tramp steamer from Liverpool to New York as part of Fred Karno’s famous music hall troupe. The two future stars shared a cabin. They also shared comedy routines and laughter, but, by the end of the journey, they hated each other.

As fascinated as he was by this piece of Chaplin and Laurel’s history, the show’s writer and director Paul Hunter (also Artistic Director of the acclaimed theatre company Told by an Idiot) initially had reservations about the project.

“I had no interest in making a bio drama or some sort of tribute show,” says Paul, who resolved only to be persuaded otherwise if he could find an angle that fitted with Told by an Idiot’s ethos of ambitious and creative storytelling.

Fast-forward to a week of development in a rehearsal room and suddenly Paul came face to face with a distinct possibility.

“Early on we created twenty minutes of material without anyone saying a word. I got very excited; this could be our homage to the silent movie.”

Favouring fiction over fact, Paul and the team created what he calls ‘a true fantasy.’ Coupled with the conviction that people desperately wanted a show that made them forget the virus-ridden woes, it was full steam ahead.  

“The style of the show is very original and different, and yes; it feels like exactly the right show to be coming back with,” confirms Paul, whose casting was inspired by the show’s brilliant physical comedy consultant and famous Belgian clown Jos Houben.

“We didn’t want to go the looky-like route, which would have been very reductive. We wanted to cast in the spirit of Charlie and Stan and in a less obvious way, so Jos’s suggestion of casting ‘two brilliant kids’ opened things up a lot and kept it very theatrical.

“With Chaplin I thought it was more interesting to cast a woman because as he was such a delicate and feminine performer - when the great Nijinsky met Chaplin, he refused to believe that Chaplin hadn’t trained as a dancer.”

Casting young performers also helped Paul achieve his vision of a show that felt fresh and vibrant.

“I wanted to create a very contemporary show not a museum piece, and it had to have really broad appeal. This appeals to anyone who breathes because there are no words!”

And while slapstick comedy looks effortless, Paul points out that this is only because of the precise choreography and endless rehearsal that goes into making it look this way.

“The phrase most associated with Charlie Chaplin from a film crew’s point of view was ‘let’s do it again.’ He was a perfectionist because he knew that for a gag to work it had to be perfectly timed and perfectly executed. It takes hours to finesse a gag or routine,” says Paul, adding that securing Jos Houben as the production’s physical comedy specialist was imperative.

But Paul is at pains to reassure audiences that, while this is a silent comedy, they have nothing to fear. 

“It’s not some strange, experimental show. It is totally accessible to everyone; a joyous piece of entertainment.”

When it came to inspiration for telling a wordless story, Paul turned to the winner of the 2012 Best Picture Oscar, The Artist. Proving that a silent comedy can still go down an award-smashing storm in a modern world; while words weren’t essential, music definitely was.

A ‘huge joy,’ the original piano score, played live, was composed by contemporary jazz star Zoe Rahman.

“Zoe composed the score, but I asked her to retain the improvised jazz idiom. It was a massive ask to then find someone who could play that way for an hour and a half, but Sarah Alexander [who also plays several roles in the show] does it wonderfully and audiences really love it. Live music elevates what you’re watching and adds to the enjoyment.”

Delighted to be sharing the joy by taking Charlie & Stan on a national tour, Paul and the cast are especially looking forward to playing Cornwall. Not least for the Minack Theatre’s superbly apt backdrop.

“Charlie & Stan is set on an ocean liner and of course the Minack Theatre is right by the ocean, so it’s the perfect setting.”

Choosing to make the show the same length as Chaplin’s famous silent movies, Paul is confident that Charlie & Stan offers a fabulous antidote to the doom and gloom of recent times.

“After the terrible time we’ve been through it’s so funny, so uplifting and so poignant. It’s a beautiful eighty minutes of entertainment that I think will really connect with people and chime with the times.”

Certainly a night of carefree fun that can be shared with the whole family is a dreamy prospect. And as Charlie himself said: ‘Laughter is the tonic, the relief, the surcease from pain.’

And there’s no need to trouble our overstretched NHS for this particular tonic. Just call the box office and you’ll be laughing. Literally.


Kids take the lead at the Shipwreck Treasure Museum

Posted on Monday 26th July, 2021

Kids take the lead at the Shipwreck Treasure Museum

Children are being put in charge when their family visit at an award-winning Cornish attraction this summer.

The Shipwreck Treasure Museum that overlooks Charlestown’s UNESCO World Heritage site harbour is launching a special guidebook for the school summer holidays that put young visitors at the forefront of a family visit.

A copy of the guidebook, which is included in the museum’s admission price, will be given to each family, and designed for children to take the reins and guide their family through Europe’s largest private collection of shipwreck artefacts.

The guide explains shipwreck treasure and focusses on the stories of key vessels lost at sea with tasks to hunt down specific artefacts from each that are on display. There is also a QR code link to more related activities on the museum’s website so the fun can continue after a visit.

Lynné Raubenheimer, Visitor Engagement Manager at the Shipwreck Treasure Museum said:

“We’ve created our new guidebook specifically so our younger guests can get fully involved in their visit and lead their grown-ups as they immerse themselves in their own family journey of discovery.

“Our museum is full of amazing tales that the artefacts recovered from lost ships tell which captivate our visitors of all ages. We hope our brave young pioneers will use this guide to help them and their families connect with the past.”

The museum is open seven day a week from 10am to 5pm daily. To find out more and pre-book timed entry tickets visit


Picture credit: Lynne Raubenheimer

Five Cornish visitor attractions taking sustainability seriously

Posted on Tuesday 20th July, 2021

Five Cornish visitor attractions taking sustainability seriously

As we approach the end of Plastic Free July, Best Days Out Cornwall are showcasing some of the attractions we work with putting sustainability at the heart of what they do.

Plastic Free July is a global movement that helps millions of people be part of the solution to plastic pollution – so we can have cleaner streets, oceans, and beautiful communities. 

Cornish visitor attractions can ensure millions of visitors every year are aware of what can be done to take care of our planet, and our industry body Cornwall Association of Tourist Attractions is working with almost 40 attractions to make sure they are aware of steps they can take to improve their ethical behaviour.

We are showcasing five of the attractions we work with who are working hard to make sure they are doing as much as they can to act sustainably - these are just a handful of the actions taken by Cornish visitor attractions to make sure they're making effective changes to help our planet.

Eden Project

The Eden Project, an educational charity, connects us with each other and the living world, exploring how we can work towards a better future. Sustainability is at the heart of what they are all about and is a major part of the message they hope to convey.

The visitor destination in Cornwall, UK, is nestled in a huge crater. Massive Biomes house the largest rainforest in captivity, stunning plants, exhibitions, and stories serve as a backdrop to their striking contemporary gardens, summer concerts and exciting year-round family events. 

PK Porthcurno

PK Porthcurno have worked extensively with Tevi Cornwall to remove single-use plastics from the museum’s shop, café and offices, and have been awarded ‘Plastic Free Business Champion’ status by Surfers Against Sewage (SAS).

Planet PK, the award-winning environmental programme of PK Porthcurno have created a Plastic Free Steering Group which includes representatives from National Trust, Cornwall AONB, Cornwall Council, Minack Theatre, Porthcurno Beach Café and local residents. Working collaboratively this group aims to achieve official ‘Plastic Free Community’ status with SAS.

Planet PK also recently hosted an SAS Million Mile Clean as part of the national campaign and are continuing to organise regular beach cleans to help combat the litter issues faced due to the popularity of Porthcurno as a visitor destination.

The PK Porthcurno team have a beach clean on Thursday 22 July for Plastic Free July 9-10am which coincides with an Instagram takeover for Visit Cornwall which will raise awareness on the litter problems at Porthcurno.

Cornish Seal Sanctuary

Part of the role of the onsite team at the Cornish Seal Sanctuary is to educate the visiting public about the dangers of plastic pollution on marine wildlife.

Steps taken by the Seal Sanctuary team include:

  • Changing waste and recycling management contractor - they currently send 0% of waste into landfill
  • do not sell any single used plastic bottles on site, all drinks come in cans or glass
  • recycling bins across site
  • Changing sandwich supplier to one whose operation is carbon neutral, and all product packaging is plastic free.  
  • Use of paper straws only
  • Constantly reviewing retail products to minimise plastic – including a cuddly toy seal made entirely from recycled plastic!

National Lobster Hatchery

This pioneering marine conservation attraction in Padstow is unique in their approach, with their work entirely tied up in ensuring the sustainability of the Cornish shellfish industry. Working with global experts and renowned scientists, they conserve fragile lobster populations and help solve the sustainability issues facing our coastal communities.

They have made the following changes as they move towards becoming plastic-free:

  • Removal of plastic bags in the shop, replaced with paper ones
  • Shop merchandise moving towards plastic free
  • Selling green toys made from recycled plastic, reusable cups recycled from disposable cups and recycled ghost fishing net jewellery
  • Introduction of a pledge pole, intended for visitor to think about the small steps they can practically take to reduce plastic use
  • Plastic containers used within a large research project were recycled at the end of the project and turned into Kayaks by Odyssey Innovation.

David Lockyer, CEO of the National Lobster Hatchery, said: “Few of us are perfect when it comes to the use of plastic. However, if everyone takes simple small steps to remove plastic from everyday life so much can be achieved.”

The Minack Theatre – Plastic Free Champions

The Minack Theatre is part of the Porthcurno Plastic Free Community.  The theatre has been awarded the title of Plastic Free Champion for their commitment to reduce single use plastics on site.  The team are committed to making the Minack as sustainable as possible.

In the last two years the Minack Theatre have initiated the following steps to reduce and recycle plastic waste:

  • Replace plastic straws with paper ones.
  • Replace plastic bags with paper bags
  • Single use plastic drinking bottles replaced by canned soft drinks and water.
  • Developed own branded reusable water bottle made from sugar cane.
  • Selling reusable coffee cups with a free hot drink on purchase
  • Installed drinking water taps around the theatre and in the car park to encourage customers and staff to refill their own water bottles.
  • Using compostable disposable cups and takeaway-boxes
  • Using wooden take-away cutlery
  • Aiming to use ethically sourced and sustainable products – e.g., deli pop looks with compostable packaging.
  • Working with suppliers to provide food items that are not wrapped in plastic.
  • Purchasing cleaning products in large bulk containers and then decant them into recyclable plastic bottles for use on site
  • Floor matting is made from Econyl, a substance produced from recycling ghost fishing nets.  Once these mats have ceased to be usable at the theatre, they are recycled again into flooring for equestrian arenas.
  • All dirty waste, such as nappies, is collected and reprocessed for fuel, roads etc
  • Implementing a new waste bin system in 2020 to make recycling easier and more effective.

For more information on Plastic Free July, go to

CATA works with almost 40 of Cornwall’s top tourist attractions, ensuring the best visitor experiences are promoted across the region. They act as the voice of the Cornish visitor attraction industry and provide a supportive industry network for those working in the sector

Summer Family Fun and Fireworks at Flambards

Posted on Tuesday 20th July, 2021

Summer Family Fun and  Fireworks at Flambards

Flambards Theme Park has unveiled an exciting line-up of August evening events with live music from local artists, after-dark rides, and their award-winning spectacular firework displays. The iconic Cornish Theme Park is open daily throughout July and August for fun family adventures.

Plus, every Monday and Wednesday throughout August, visitors will have the chance to enjoy live music performances. Flambards is proud to be supporting a host of fabulous local bands including The Qwest, Shameless and The Electric Bandits.

The events will colourfully climax with fireworks illuminating the Cornish night sky. The Flambards Firework Spectaculars have previously been awarded Best Attraction Event in the South West by ‘Days Out with the Kids’.

In addition to the special events, visitors can board the theme park’s newest ride for 2021, the Western Mine Train, which transports guests back 200 years on a whistle-stop tour of the American Frontier, travelling through the twisting tunnels of an abandoned mining town.

Visitors can also take a spin on the Hornet Rollercoaster, check out the amazing views from the top of SkyRaker - the twisting drop ride, brave the Thunderbolt and prepare to get wet on the Colorado River log flume.  

Feel the G-Force on the ‘Sky-Force’ ride. Whizzing high above the Park, this adrenaline-packed ride is guaranteed fun for thrill-seekers. The giant ‘white knuckle’ experience takes up to 40 people, 25 metres above the ground exerting a force of up to 3G whilst simultaneously spinning 360 degrees.

Plus take a walk-through history in Flambards’ award-winning undercover attractions. Journey back in time to discover Britain in the Blitz, The War Gallery and Aviation Experience and an entire Victorian Village – all under one roof.

With its evocative atmosphere of bustling streets and alleyways, hidden nooks and crannies, the village is an incredible all round sensory experience with authentic sights, smells and sounds - thanks to the real cobblestones!

  • Flambards Theme Park, Helston, Cornwall TR13 0QA. Tel: 01326 573 404 or visit for more information.


23 dog-friendly days out in Cornwall

Posted on Wednesday 14th July, 2021

23 dog-friendly days out in Cornwall

Cornwall is a fantastic destination for a dog friendly holiday. As well as miles of coastal walks, countryside rambles and beaches, we also have many tourist attractions who are happy to welcome your dog.

Take our lead and don’t leave the dog at home. Dogs are welcome at many of our visitor attractions here in Cornwall. Most will allow dogs to visit all or part of their site.

Please do check the websites of each attraction to make sure you have booked in advance, and are aware of their dog-friendly policies. If you have specific requests regarding your Assistance Dog, please get in touch with the attraction to discuss your accessibility needs.

Bodmin and Wenford Railway

Discover the excitement and nostalgia of steam travel with a journey back in time on the BODMIN & WENFORD RAILWAY, Cornwall's only full size railway still regularly operated by steam locomotives.

Cornish Seal Sanctuary

Experience animal welfare in action in Cornwall's only Seal Sanctuary and rescue centre. Hear about dramatic rescues and meet the seal and sea lion characters whose individual stories are bought to life during your visit.

Eden Project

Inside our visitor attraction in Cornwall are massive Biomes housing the largest rainforest in captivity, stunning plants, exhibitions and stories serve as a backdrop to our striking contemporary gardens. Dogs are welcome in the Outdoor Gardens – assistance dogs only are allowed in the Biomes.


Flambards Theme Park, Helston, Cornwall is the perfect destination for an unforgettable family day out with its fun mix of rides, indoor attractions and entertainment.

Geevor Tin Mine

Follow in the footsteps of Cornish miners.  The stunning coastline around Pendeen was once at the heart of the Cornish tin and copper mining industry.

Visit a real mine and learn what life was like for a Cornish miner – and enjoy a walk on the South West Coast Path after your visit.

Hangloose Adventure

Hangloose Adventure is based in the heart of Cornwall within the beautiful confines of the Eden Project. They are one of the UK's top adrenaline adventure activity providers including the world-famous Zip-wire over the Eden Project Biomes. Dogs can be on site and kept on a lead while their owners take turns on the activities!

Healeys Cornish Cyder Farm

Home to Cornwall's favourite Rattler Cornish Cloudy Cyder, traditional Cornish Cream Teas, and makers of England's oldest whiskey, a visit to Healeys is a sure way to tickle those taste buds, create fond memories, and expand your cyder knowledge!

Jamaica Inn

Jamaica Inn welcome dogs in the Smugglers bar, the museum and they even have some deluxe en-suite bedrooms where you can request a dog bed and bowl for your room. Not forgetting the doggy treat at the bar on arrival!

Lands End

A world famous landmark and resort at the westernmost point of Cornwall - you can stay with for a fabulous short break, discover a beautiful coastal landscape and enjoy fantastic attractions and seasonal events.


A Victorian family home inside a Jacobean mansion, surrounded by beautiful formal gardens, an expansive estate and exciting cycling trails.

Lappa Valley

Lappa Valley is the only attraction in Cornwall that transports visitors on an exhilarating nostalgic steam train ride into a secret world of traditional fun and family adventure.

Minack Theatre

A place like no other, the world-famous Minack theatre is a must-see for visitors to Cornwall. 

Perched on rugged cliffs over-looking the spectacular panorama of Porthcurno Bay, you might think ancient Greeks had carved it from the granite.  In fact, less than a century ago it was a rough gully of gorse and heather dropping dizzily down to the sea. Dogs are welcome during visiting hours, but we regret that no dogs other than guide dogs will be admitted to performances. For daytime storytelling events dogs on leads are permitted at the top of the theatre only.


Visit Pencarrow House & Gardens, the much loved home of the Molesworth St Aubyn family who still live here and can trace their family back to the time of Queen Elizabeth 1. Have a leisurely walk around the 50 acres.

Pendennis Castle

Situated on a headland with breathtaking views out to sea, Pendennis Castle is one of Henry VIII's finest coastal fortresses. The castle has defended Cornwall since Tudor times, and played a vital role during the two World Wars.

Pinetum Gardens

Pinetum is a very special and inclusive space, set mostly on level ground with large areas put to lawn, perfect for a gentle stroll with the dog, an ideal environment for under fives to toddle around and perfect for families to share a moment away from traffic and the stresses of everyday life.

Lovingly created over the last four decades with over 6000 plants from around the globe, there is colour and interest throughout the year

PK Porthcurno

PK Porthcurno is a unique museum experience telling the story of how a once uninhabited valley in Cornwall became the heart of worldwide communication, how it remains so today and what might happen tomorrow.

Shipwreck Treasure Museum

The Shipwreck Treasure Museum shows a unique insight into the history of maritime adventures and misfortunes. It is a museum of peril and possibility, where a seabed of salvaged stories waits to be explored.

Discover 8,000 finds from over 150 shipwrecks. Well behaved dogs are welcome, provided they are on a lead.

The Lost Gardens of Heligan

Heligan remains one of the most loved and romantic gardens in the UK, appreciated as much for its beauty and mystery as for the ground breaking restoration project

Over 200 acres are now a paradise for the explorer, wildlife, plant lover and garden romantic. Victorian Productive Gardens and Pleasure Gardens beckon, along with winding paths laid out over two centuries ago. 

Tintagel Castle

Go on a legendary adventure at Tintagel - a Cornish castle with links to the stories of King Arthur. Cross the spectacular new bridge to take in unforgettable views of the coastline and explore the history-rich headland. Walk among the castle ruins that still cling to the cliffs, find early-medieval remains and meet Gallos - the life-size bronze statue of an ancient king who keeps watch over the wild seas below

Trebah Garden

Trebah is a sub-tropical paradise with a stunning coastal backdrop.

Discover the magic of this beautiful valley garden with over four miles of footpaths. Explore under canopies bursting with exotic blooms. Follow vibrant tunnels of colour that cascade to a private secluded beach on the Helford River.


A welcoming country house and garden set in an estate with stunning maritime views and lovely woodland walks.

Enjoy Trelissick's woodland garden, with meandering paths that take you on a journey through evergreens, palms, flowering shrubs and borders bursting with exotic colour.  


Discover a garden where the spirit of the Plant Hunters lives on with winding, wooded paths, wide open spaces and plants from around the world.

Be wowed by sea views, towering tree canopy of the long walk and jungle-like tree ferns.

Wheal Martyn

The extensive historic grounds and largely outdoor museum offer a safe space to reflect, soak up the natural environment and enjoy some sense of normality away from crowds of people in a wonderful historic setting. 


Picture credit: James Street | Eden Project

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