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Child Friendly Hidden Gems to visit in Cornwall

Updated: Mar 12

Your Ultimate Guide to exploring off-the-beaten track child friendly locations scattered around Cornwall.

Whether you're looking to hike along gorgeous coastlines, or discover hidden gems perfect for picnics, this guide will lead you to some of Cornwall's best-kept secrets, ensuring a memorable and family-friendly experience for all!

Here are some of our favourite hidden gems in Cornwall which are child friendly, however we do recommend doing your own research, as each child is different.

So grab your walking boots, pack your picnic (or a change of nappies!), and get ready to explore the hidden gems that await you and your little ones in the captivating Cornwall!

Image of The Minack Theatre in Cornwall

Kendall Vale is a beautiful woodland walk with old ruins from the gun powder factory left to nature, almost looks like something from a rainforest! Visitors will also enjoy the streams running here and there with small waterfalls.

An excellent time of year to go is early spring in our opinion when everything is just starting to come out with colour. Parking is limited around the residential areas, so please be considerate.

FAQs/Things to know before visiting Kennall Vale

1) Where is Kennall Vale located?

Kennall Vale is located near the village of Ponsanooth in Cornwall, England.

2) What makes Kennall Vale a hidden gem?

Kennall Vale is considered a hidden gem due to its secluded location, lush woodland, and the remnants of its industrial past, including old mine workings and ruins, offering visitors a unique blend of natural beauty and historical interest.

3) How do I get to Kennall Vale?

Visitors can access Kennall Vale by car or public transportation. There are parking areas near Ponsanooth, from where visitors can enjoy a scenic walk to the vale. Additionally, there are public footpaths leading to Kennall Vale from nearby villages.

Places to stay near Kennall Vale

Image of Kendall Vale in Cornwall

2) St Michael's Mount

St Michaels Mount is an absolutely stunning place, and one of the first gems we ever visited back in 2018! It's a must visit if you are in South Cornwall, offering visitors the chance to explore fantastic gardens and the castle is well worth a visit with spectacular views.

A few words of advice; unfortunately no dogs are allowed, and if you want to walk along the causeway, look up the tide times!

FAQs/Things to know before visiting St Michael's Mount

1) How do I get to St Michael's Mount?

St Michael's Mount is accessible by foot along the causeway during low tide or by boat during high tide. The causeway is located near the town of Marazion, Cornwall, and is easily reachable by car or public transportation.

2) What can I see and do at St Michael's Mount?

Visitors to St Michael's Mount can explore the historic castle, gardens, and village, as well as enjoy stunning coastal views. Guided tours are available, showcasing the island's rich history and architectural features. Additionally, the island hosts events and activities throughout the year, including cultural festivals and exhibitions.

3) Is St Michael's Mount suitable for families and children?

Yes, St Michael's Mount offers attractions and activities suitable for families and children. Kids can enjoy exploring the castle and gardens, learning about the island's history, and participating in family-friendly events. However, it's essential to be mindful of the changing tides and follow safety instructions, especially when crossing the causeway.

Places to stay near St Michael's Mount

Image of St Michael's Mount in Cornwall

3) Carn Euny Ancient Village

This gem is an incredible place to see remains of an ancient settlement and holy well, with it only being a short walk from a very small carpark. There are helpful information boards on site to fascinate the kids imaginations!

You can even go into one of the surviving buildings, so it's a must see! You can also walk footpaths to Chapel Carn; a fantastic hill with amazing views out to Lands End.

FAQs/Things to know before visiting Carn Euny Ancient Village

1) What is Carn Euny Ancient Village?

Carn Euny Ancient Village is an archaeological site located near Sancreed, Cornwall. It features the remains of an Iron Age settlement, including stone-built houses, courtyard houses, and a fogou—a unique underground structure believed to have served various purposes. The site offers visitors a glimpse into Cornwall's ancient past and its prehistoric inhabitants.

2) How do I get to Carn Euny Ancient Village?

Carn Euny Ancient Village is accessible by car and is located approximately 3 miles southwest of Penzance. Visitors can follow signposted routes from nearby towns and villages. The site has designated parking areas, and public transportation options may also be available.

3) What can I expect to see at Carn Euny Ancient Village?

At Carn Euny, visitors can explore the remains of stone houses, courtyard houses, and the well-preserved fogou—a fascinating underground passage with chambers and tunnels. Interpretive signs provide information about the site's history and significance. Additionally, the surrounding landscape offers scenic views and opportunities for peaceful walks.

Places to stay near Carn Euny Ancient Village

Image of Carn Euny Ancient Village in Cornwall

4) The Minack Theatre

Some might call it faux-Med because it certainly looks it. The genesis of this theatre perched on a cliff in Porthcurno in Cornwall came from one lady who loved the theatre so much she built herself one -by hand!!

We definitely recommend taking the kids here for an open air play under the stars!

FAQs/Things to know before visiting The Minack Theatre

1) What is The Minack Theatre?

The Minack Theatre is an open-air amphitheater located on the cliffs above Porthcurno Bay in Cornwall, England. It is renowned for its stunning natural setting and unique construction, with seats cut into the granite cliffs. The theater hosts a variety of performances, including plays, musicals, concerts, and storytelling events, attracting visitors from around the world.

2) How do I get to The Minack Theatre?

The Minack Theatre is situated approximately 4 miles from the town of Penzance. Visitors can reach the theater by car, bus, or on foot via the South West Coast Path. Parking is available on-site, but spaces can be limited during peak times. Additionally, guided tours are offered, providing insight into the theatre's history and design.

3) Can I visit The Minack Theatre outside of performance times?

Yes, The Minack Theatre is open to visitors during the day, allowing them to explore the grounds, enjoy the panoramic views of the coastline, and discover the theater's fascinating history.

Visitors can wander through the terraced seating area, admire the intricate stage design, and visit the Minack Museum and exhibition center, which showcases the life and work of its founder, Rowena Cade.

Places to stay near The Minack Theatre

Image of The Minack Theatre in Cornwall

5) Cligga Head Wolframite Mine & Explosives Factory

Visitors can enjoy a stunning walk along cliffs from Perranporth, admiring the breath-taking views with loads of little hidden places of interest.

There is a plaque which gives a brief history on the mine that once served a purpose during the war. However unfortunately most of the shafts have been filled in & have fences around them.

FAQs/Things to know before visiting Cligga Head Wolframite Mine & Explosives Factory

1) What is Cligga Head Wolframite Mine & Explosives Factory?

Cligga Head Wolframite Mine & Explosives Factory is a historic mining site located near Perranporth in Cornwall, England. Operating from the late 19th century until the mid-20th century, it was a significant producer of wolframite, a tungsten ore used in various industrial applications. The site also housed an explosives factory during World War I, contributing to the war effort.

2) Can visitors explore Cligga Head Wolframite Mine & Explosives Factory?

Yes, visitors can explore the remnants of Cligga Head Wolframite Mine & Explosives Factory, including old mine shafts, buildings, and machinery. However, it's essential to exercise caution and stay on designated paths, as the site may contain hazardous areas. Visitors are encouraged to respect any safety barriers and signage for their own protection.

3) How do I get to Cligga Head Wolframite Mine & Explosives Factory?

Cligga Head Wolframite Mine & Explosives Factory is accessible by foot from Perranporth, with the site situated along the South West Coast Path. Visitors can park in Perranporth and embark on a scenic coastal walk to reach the site.

Alternatively, guided tours may be available, providing additional information about the history and significance of the mining operations.

Places to stay near Cligga Head Wolframite Mine & Explosives Factory

Image of Cligga Head Wolframite Mine & Explosives Factory in Cornwall

6) The Lost Gardens of Heligan

This hidden gem is a true paradise tucked away in the heart of Cornwall. The gardens are meticulously restored and beautifully maintained, showcasing the epitome of nature's splendor. They also have a diversity of plant species, including exotic and rare varieties.

Exploring the iconic Mud Maid and the atmospheric Jungle provided a sense of adventure, and it's a perfect destination for both nature enthusiasts and families seeking a day of exploration!

FAQs/Things to know before visiting The Lost Gardens of Heligan

1) What are The Lost Gardens of Heligan?

The Lost Gardens of Heligan are one of the most popular botanical gardens in Cornwall, England. Spread across 200 acres, they are renowned for their restoration from a neglected state in the 1990s. Visitors can explore various themed areas, including the Jungle, the Wider Estate, and the Victorian Productive Gardens, all offering a unique blend of horticulture and history.

2) What can I expect to see at The Lost Gardens of Heligan?

At The Lost Gardens of Heligan, visitors can expect to encounter a diverse array of plant species, from exotic flora in the Jungle to traditional crops in the Productive Gardens. Additionally, the gardens feature ornamental ponds, sculptures, and structures such as the iconic Mud Maid and Giant's Head. Guided tours and informational signage provide insights into the gardens' rich heritage and restoration efforts.

3) How do I get to The Lost Gardens of Heligan?

The Lost Gardens of Heligan are located near the village of Pentewan, approximately 6 miles from St Austell in Cornwall. Visitors can reach the gardens by car, with ample parking available onsite. Additionally, public transportation options include bus services from St Austell and nearby towns.

It's advisable to check the official website for opening hours, ticket prices, and any seasonal events before planning your visit.

Places to stay near The Lost Gardens of Heligan

Image of The Lost Gardens of Heligan in Cornwall

7) Tintagel Castle

Tintagel Castle, nestled amidst awe-inspiring natural surroundings, is a testament to the marvels of nature. The breathtaking scenery, with its mesmerizing water vistas, will leave you in awe.

When you're here, try to go to the top to see King Arthur Statue. It's quite steep hill but the view is amazing, and is definitely worth it! On the way down, there's a land rover service (£2.50/per person) taking you to the tickets entrance.

FAQs/Things to know before visiting Tintagel Castle

1) What is Tintagel Castle?

Tintagel Castle is a historic site located on the rugged coastline of Cornwall, England. It is renowned for its association with the legend of King Arthur and is believed to have been a significant stronghold during the early medieval period. The castle ruins sit atop a dramatic cliff, offering panoramic views of the surrounding coastline and the Atlantic Ocean.

2) Is Tintagel Castle accessible to visitors?

Yes, Tintagel Castle is open to visitors throughout the year, allowing them to explore the ruins, discover its fascinating history, and enjoy the stunning scenery. The site is managed by English Heritage and offers facilities such as visitor information centers, toilets, and a gift shop. However, due to its location on steep terrain, parts of the castle may not be accessible to those with mobility issues.

3) What attractions can I expect to see at Tintagel Castle?

Visitors to Tintagel Castle can explore a range of attractions, including the remains of the castle itself, which date back to the 13th century. Other highlights include the legendary Tintagel Island, connected to the mainland by a narrow bridge, and the nearby Tintagel Old Post Office, a medieval building now managed by the National Trust. Interpretive panels and guided tours provide insights into the site's history and folklore.

Places to stay near Tintagel Castle

Image of Tintagel Castle in Cornwall

We hoped you enjoyed discovering the local finds and less known child friendly hidden gems which are scattered around Cornwall. We are confident that visiting some of these hidden gems will make your Cornwall trip even more memorable!

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