Why You Should Book A Surf Weekend In Cornwall This Summer

A surfers paradise in southern England? Find out why Cornwall is one of the best destinations for UK travel this summer.
A surfers paradise in southern England? Find out why Cornwall is one of the best destinations for UK travel this summer. | © Bedruthan Hotel & Spa
Nina Zietman

Senior Commissioning Editor

With the world opening up post-pandemic, many travellers are eager to hop on the first plane to far-flung destinations like Indonesia or Argentina. However, if there’s one thing we’ve learnt over the last two years, sustainable travel is the future. 57 per cent of UK travellers plan to travel in an ecoconscious way over the next 12 months, according to a 2022 survey from Booking.com. There’s nowhere better for a sustainable staycation than Cornwall, home to luxurious ecoresorts, adventurous activities and excellent food, just a four hour train ride from London.

If you’re feeling inspired and want to explore more incredible destinations, check out our own selection of trips from around the world.

This sunset spot is one of the best places to be on a warm summer evening in Cornwall

It was a wild, blustery day when I turned up on Mawgan Porth beach. There wasn’t the bluebird skies and small peeling waves that I’d imagined for my surf lesson with KingSurf, part of a two-day package with Bedruthan Hotel & Spa. The sea-facing hot tub back at the hotel seemed infinitely more appealing than the turbulent ocean in front of me. Still, my surf instructor Toby greeted me with a cheery smile. “You ready to get out there?” He could tell I was apprehensive. “It’s good to surf in all conditions, then you’ll be better prepared when the clean waves roll in.”

I already surf fairly regularly, so we started with a recap on the beach where Toby gave me a few handy pointers. However, lessons can be tailored to any ability – from complete beginners to seasoned riders. Soon, we were grabbing our boards and paddling out beyond the breaking waves. Right away, I take a couple of tumbles. That’s the beauty of surfing, just when you think you’ve cracked it, a huge set will roll through and wash your insides out with saltwater, leaving you slipping around on your board like a drunk seal. It’s a test of willpower. If you can withstand the cold fingers, salt spray in your face, and aching arms, then you’re treated to the ultimate reward: that feeling of flying down the face of a wave. After a few more misses, I catch a chunky three-footer that spits me out further down the beach. I make my way back out to Toby with a huge grin on my face. It’s addictive. I paddle out again and again, until my arms feel like spaghetti.

Need to relax after a day on the beach? This might be the solution…

Thirty minutes later, I’m finally in that giant hot tub back at the Bedruthan Hotel. The place has a distinctly retro vibe, originally designed in 1959 to echo desert houses in California. Think pop art fabrics and 60s style ball chairs, albeit the spa wouldn’t look out of place at any five-star resort. It’s perfect for a sustainable getaway as everything is within walking distance. The golden sands of Mawgan Porth beach are just a five-minute stroll downhill, backed by a pub, village shop, cafe, boutiques, and, of course, KingSurf. You can even bring your dog. The hotel itself has long been committed to environmental protection; the founder, Peter, installed solar panels decades ago and cultivated his own market garden, which used to supply the hotel kitchen. Today, its green credentials can be spotted in the finer details – from the organic Green People suncream sold in the spa to the rainwater that’s used to flush the toilets.

While Bedruthan is a family-friendly hotel, I hardly noticed; there’s enough adults-only spaces to keep child-free travellers away from noisy little ones – from the tranquil spa to The Herring restaurant. The latter was a real highlight. Dim lighting and Scandi-style furnishings create an upscale, intimate atmosphere, perfect for dinner with your other half. The contemporary menu is based around local, sustainable Cornish produce. Expect tapas-style starters (like Cornish crab with pickled ginger and coriander), followed by a choice of fish, meat or vegetarian main. I went for the bouillabaisse served with local mussels, focaccia crisp, Cornish gouda and saffron. We finished the day blissfully relaxed, well-fed and ready for bed – although I was still thinking about that final wave I’d caught.

You can even check out what the weather is like before you head out from the comfort of your own room

Next morning, while tucking into freshly baked pastries and hot coffee over breakfast in the Wild Café, I could see the waves rolling in again. I checked my watch. Time for another surf?

Bedruthan Hotel & Spa offers two-night Surf Breaks from £420, based on two adults, including a surf lesson with KingSurf, use of the spa facilities, daily breakfast and dinner at The Herring restaurant.

Culture Trip Summer Sale

Save up to $1,395 on our unique small-group trips! Limited spots.

Edit article