Bude on Cornwall’s north coast near the Devon border is a great family resort overlooking Bude Bay with its golden sandy beaches. The town has plenty to offer and has been attracting holiday makers since Victorian times.
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Beaches to visit and things to do in and around Bude
The two beaches in the town of Bude are Summerleaze and Crooklets. Summerleaze is the main beach and is a wide sandy beach, one of the most popular beaches in the area. Great for families and surfers alike, it also offers other water sports such as kayaking and seafishing. There is also a semi-natural sea water swimming pool which offers free and safe bathing. Crooklets Beach has pebbles and sand and some great rockpools at low tide, like Summerleaze it is also great for surfing. Both beaches have beach huts which are available to hire and whilst Summerleaze is dog friendly, Crooklets is not.
Just north of Bude is Duckpool, a wild and romantic cove owned by the National Trust. It great for rock pools but not for swimming or surfing, the rugged cliffs are covered with wild flowers in this tranquil setting near the wooded Coombe Valley.
Northcott Mouth 4.8 km north of Bude is another National Trust beach; with towering cliffs on both sides this beautiful beach is great for families and dogs and less busy than the main beaches in Bude.
Sandymouth Beach is a beautiful unspoilt beach 8km north of Bude. It is owned by the National Trust, set below dramatic cliffs with great rock pools and a waterfall. It is a bit of a steep walk down to the beach which means that it is not ideal for the less mobile or young children.
3km south of Bude is Widemouth Bay; it looks like one long beach stretching 2.4km but it is divided into North and South (the south beach is also known as Black Rock) by the black rocks that stretch across the middle. It is ideal for swimming and surfing.
Millook Haven Beach is about 8km south of Bude, it is not a beach for swimming, surfing or walking in the sand. It is a beach of pebbles which lies beneath the imposing Penalt Cliff. It is a great place to observe wildlife, seals, dolphins and sea birds.
The Bude Canal was built in the 19th C to carry the calcium rich sand to the farms, but today you can hire canoes, kayaks or pedaloes to enjoy the canal which is a haven for wildlife. The towpath alongside the canal is level so it is great for cycling, pushchairs or wheelchairs.
Crackington Haven near Bude is a small coastal village in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It was once a small harbour but now is a secluded beach and cove, ideal for families. There are spectacular views as you approach the village; the area offers some great coastal walks along the cliffs.
Morwenstow the most northerly Cornish village is set in an area of dramatic coastline and sheltered wooded valleys. As well as its natural beauty Morwenstow is also famous because of Robert Stephen Hawker, and eccentric Victorian vicar and poet. Hawker’s Hut is National Trust owned, built out of driftwood and perched on the cliffs it is where he wrote many of his poems and sermons one of which was Cornwall’s anthem Trelawny. He rescued the bodies of many shipwrecked sailors and gave them a proper burial.