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The wild south
Lizard Peninsula

The Lizard Peninsula Holiday Cottages

Stay in one of our holiday cottages on the Lizard and you’ll have dramatic coastline, rich maritime history, picturesque fishing villages and wonderful wildlife on your doorstep. The Lizard Peninsula is Cornwall’s remote, wilder south, situated just southwest of Falmouth, stretching from the Helford River all the way to the vibrant harbour town of Porthleven in the west. Special and remote in equal measure, the Lizard doesn’t have any major settlements, and with just two main roads in and out of the area, it remains an unspoilt and particularly stunning part of the country.

Having said all of this, the Lizard is packed with amazing things to see and do and brilliant places to drink and dine. Some of our favourite places include Lizard Point, mainland Britain’s most southerly tip, where you can spot basking sharks and dolphins if you’re lucky. The pristine and dramatic Kynance Cove is another top spot, with its turquoise seas in summer and impressive rock stacks, where low tide reveals amazing rockpools. Ramblers also flock here for the coast path, which is dotted with cosy pubs and cafes, stunning flora and fauna and unrivalled scenery.

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The Lizard guide

Coastline near holiday cottages on the Lizard Peninsula by Forever Cornwall

Stunning clifftop walks

The Lizard Peninsula has some of the most breathtaking sections of the entire South West Coast Path, with parts of it a designated AONB, stretching from the Helford River to the west to Loe Pool and Porthleven in the east. Two of our favourite sections of the coast path are the Mullion Cove to Lizard Point route, which traces the dramatic cliffs for seven miles, and the slightly more challenging ten-mile Lizard to Coverack route.

Unlike the busier stretches of path on the north coast, you can walk for miles without coming across another soul, dipping in and out of hidden coves that dot the coastline, marvelling at the hedgerows that are full of colour in spring and summer, watching for seals and dolphins out to sea and birds circling overhead, passing through fishing villages that have changed little over the centuries. There are a number of coastal cafes to keep you going along the way, such as the friendly Wavecrest — our favourite spot for a cream tea — or the wonderful cafe at Kynance Cove.

Flora and fauna

The Lizard is packed with fascinating flora, fauna and geology. Incredibly, over half of all the UK’s species of plants can be found here, including over fifty rare and special species, such as the red-billed chough and soaring skylarks, making it one of the most botanically diverse regions in the UK. Come in spring and summer for hedgerows full of orchids, foxgloves and bluebells; in autumn and winter spot seal pups on the pebbles and keep your eyes peeled for basking sharks out to sea.

The rocks and minerals here are also spectacular as the Lizard is a bit of a crunch-point for plate tectonics — geologists flock here in their droves to marvel at the unique serpentine rock formation with its red and green hues. The ocean floor and continental landmass were mashed together here in the Devonian era, between 358 and 419 million years ago — the village of Coverack is one of the only places where this can be seen.

Lizard Point, Cornwall, Forever Cornwall

A remote paradise

The Lizard is Cornwall’s wild south, a place of dramatic clifftops and big skies, where fishing boats are still hauled up onto the pebbles with their daily catch and sea shanties are sung in low-beamed pubs in the tiny villages that dot the coast. Cut off from ‘mainland’ Cornwall by the meandering Helford River further north, the remoteness of the Lizard is also one of its best qualities — small fishing communities and the rugged coastline remains unspoilt, and there’s still a strong sense of community in these coastal settlements.

Historic fishing villages like Coverack and Cadgwith almost feel frozen in time and give you a taste of Cornish life back in the day. The Lizard is home to some epic beaches, such as Kynance Cove and Kennack Sands, as well as strings of tiny coves which dot the coastline. Even in the peak of the summer, when the north coast is heaving with holidaymakers, you can still find your own secluded spot for a quiet swim or sunset barbecue.

Kynance Cove the Lizard Forever Cornwall

Kynance Cove

Kynance Cove is one of Cornwall’s most dramatic beaches — and also one of the most popular. It’s a bit of a walk from the car park, but visitors are rewarded with Mediterranean-like seas, huge rock stacks and hidden corners of sandy beach (when the tide’s out!), where you feel as though you’re the only ones there, Children will love exploring the caves and rockpools. In the winter, grab a hot chocolate from the cafe above the beach and watch the waves roll into this dramatic cove. Dogs are welcome between October and Easter Sunday.

Poldhu cove, the Lizard, Forever Cornwall cottages


Poldhu is a sheltered cove with blissful golden sands. With seasonal lifeguards, it’s a great place to try out watersports, go for a paddle or, when the tide’s out, head to the rockpools for some exploring with the little ones. There’s the brilliant Poldhu Beach Cafe and a surf school set just off the sand, so you can grab a board or sign up for some lessons, and warm up with one of the cafe’s legendary hot chocolates afterwards. Dogs are welcome between October and Easter Sunday.

Church Cove, Gunwalloe

The National Trust-owned Church Cove, Gunwalloe (not to be confused with the tiny Church Cove by Lizard Point) is a beautiful, lifeguarded sandy beach with dunes, stream and a beautiful church set just behind. Dollar Cove next door (same carpark) is more wild and rugged, with rocks for climbing and rockpools for exploring; when the tide’s out, you can walk right along the beach to discover caves. There’s a small coffee/ice cream hatch by the carpark, or it’s an easy 20-minute walk over the headland to Poldhu for refreshments at the Poldhu beach Cafe.

Kennack Sands, the Lizard Peninsula

Kennack Sands

Kennack Sands is a large beach with great amenities. Perfect for families, there’s good lifeguard cover and plenty of space for kids to run. It is actually comprised of two beaches – the one furthest from the car park is a nature reserve and often goes undiscovered by visitors, as it’s hidden behind the hill that separates the two. Well worth a visit (there’s great shore fishing too!). Dogs are welcome between October and Easter Sunday. The Mora Beach Cafe and Surf School is the place for refreshments and board hire and lessons. They also hire out bodyboards, wetsuits and deckchairs.

Food & drink
Forever Cornwall Poldhu Cafe Beach Landscape


The wonderful family-run Fat Apples is only a few minutes from Porthallow beach. Expect doorstop sandwiches and showstopping salads, and a lovely bunting-strewn garden. Housed in an old fisherman’s loft off the beach,you’ll find plenty of delicious things to refuel on at this brilliant little cafe, such as Cornish mussels comes straight off the day boats out front. Right off Poldhu’s beautiful arc of golden sand is this great little beach shack — its hot chocolates are legendary and change with the seasons (strawberries and cream in summer, gingerbread and caramel at Christmas). Also worth a mention are wonderful Flora — a cafe and bakery on the Trelowarren estate — the cafe at Trevassack Lake set next to a beautiful freshwater lake in the heart of the Lizard, and Wavecrest, our favourite spot for a cream tea, right on the coast path by Lizard Point.

Pubs and restaurants

At the heart of the fishing village of Cadgwith, the Cadgwith Cove Inn is still very much the centre of village life, which still has a thriving fishing community. Don’t miss the sea shanties from the local group every Friday. On the southern banks of the Helford, The Shipwrights Arms is a pub for all seasons, with a daily changing menu featuring the likes of Kynance crab, lobster, monkfish and mackerel, landed on the slipway right outside. At the heart of the Trelwarren estate, the New Yard Restaurant housed in the old stables, which hosts supper evenings (Friday and Saturday only), its menu changing according to what’s popping through the soil in the kitchen garden that very morning.


The Lizard is home to two amazing pasty makers. With 30 years’ experience, and with shops in Lizard village, Helston and Porthleven, Ann’s Pasties is one of Cornwall’s best-loved pasty makers. Rivalling Ann’s Pasties for the best Cornish pasty award, Gear Farm is a lovely independent farm shop run by people with a real passion for local produce. The pasties are stuffed with ingredients from the family farm and neighbouring fields. In Coverack, the old lifeboat house is now one of the most popular places to grab fish and chips on the Lizard. They also do curries on Wednesdays, burgers on Thursdays and roast lunch to takeaway on Sundays.

Local food on the Lizard Peninsula

The Lizard has a thriving foodie scene that celebrates the very best of local flavours, from the county’s largest farmers’ market in lively Helston and farm shops serving up the tastiest homegrown produce, to award-winning fishmongers, excellent delis and village stores, and two of Cornwall’s favourite pasty makers hidden in the folds of Cornwall’s wild, remote, most southerly region.

Find out more about buying local in with our handy Local Food Guide to the Lizard Peninsula.

Things to do
Lizard Point The lizard Forever Cornwall

Lizard Point

The dramatic cliffs and Atlantic views around Lizard Point, the most southerly point of mainland Britain, are a spectacular sight. Grab a pasty in Lizard village then walking down to the tip and along the coastal path to spot seals in the waves or kestrels overhead. Pop into the Lighthouse Heritage Centre for a guided tour or make your way down to the Lizard RNLI lifeboat station, wedged into the cliff below. There are couple of good cafes, including Wavecrest, which serves fabulous cream teas — just the fodder you need before two-mile walk along the coastal path to beautiful Kynance Cove.

Explore the coast from the water

The Lizard’s dramatic coastline can only truly be appreciated from the water. Explore all the nooks and crannies of the Lizard by kayak, on a coaststeering day, aboard a SUP or climbing the cliffs with the friendly team at Lizard Adventure, in the heart of the peninsula. The knowledgable and supportive team will have you throwing yourself off cliffs, spotting seals amongst the waves, paddling through caves and scaling jagged cliffs in some of the UK’s most scenic spots. Aimed at everyone aged eight and up. 

Forever Cornwall Roskillys Cow

Roskilly’s ice cream

If there’s one thing that should definitely be on your to-do list it’s a visit to Roskilly’s ice cream parlour, not far from Coverack. Their herd of Jersey cows, whose organic milk is used to make delicious, indulgent ice creams, refreshing sorbets and frozen yoghurts, has been farmed in the same way for generations. You can grab breakfast and lunch at The Croust House cafe, with wood-fired pizzas, salad bowls, soups and burgers. Afterwards, have a wander round the farm — there are meadows to explore and farm trails for children.

Cadgwith, The Lizard Peninsula

Visit Cadgwith

Make the day trip down to the coastal fishing village of Cadgwith — a traditional Cornish fishing village — with a cluster of thatched cottages and fishing boats on the shingle beach. On Fridays you can experience the atmosphere of the Cadgwith Cove Singers — a local shanty group — in the village’s pub, the Cadgwith Cove Inn. The sea shanties are brilliant, the beer is delicious and it’s a quintessentially Cornish way to spend an evening. There’s a great ice cream shop off the beach, a lovely gallery showcasing works by local artists, and two small pebble beaches.

Bonython Estate Gardens

One of the Lizard’s best kept secrets, the beautiful gardens of this Georgian manor estate are only open from Easter-September, so make sure you drop in if you’re in the area. Explore walled gardens, apple orchards full of Cornish varieties, lake-dotted parkland and grounds full of Cornish rhododendrons, azaleas, woodland flowers and colourful bulbs. Homemade cakes and hot drinks are available and there are plants for sale, too.

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