A large stretch of near-white sand, Pentewan Sands is located between St Austell and the fishing village of Mevagissey. The beach is actually privately owned by the Pentewan Sands Holiday Park that sits just behind. This isn't really an issue though as the beach is open to the public. In fact what it does mean is the beach is well-maintained and there are plenty of facilities.
The beach here faces east into St Austell Bay meaning it is generally sheltered from the wind and the swell. This makes it a great spot for swimming and all water sports - windsurfing, sea kayaking, water skiing and sailing. Jet skis are banned but canoes and sailing dinghies can be hired from the Holiday Park.
Pentewan is a popular family beach and bathing is safe except in strong easterly winds. However, there is no lifeguard service here, just life-saving equipment. That said, the beach is zoned off into a swimming area with buoys during the summer months.
The beach is on the South West Coast Path and there is the Pentewan Valley Trail which follows the old Pentewan railway to St Austell. It is also well worth having a walk along the beach to the old harbour at Pentewan. This was once a thriving china clay port, but has long since ceased to operate, with the sand now cutting the harbour off from the sea.
Also known as:
Type of beach
There are no lifeguards but there are lifebuoys and an emergency telephone on the beach.
Dogs friendly beach?
Seasonal dog ban in force from 1st March to 1st November.
There is easy, level access to the beach from the car park
OS grid ref.
SX 0192 4682
There are toilets and refreshment facilities at the Holiday Park behind the beach and a slipway at the beach. The beach is cleaned daily by Pentewan Sands Holiday Park staff and there are litter bins at 50m intervals along the beach.
There is a large pay car park at the rear of the beach.
Pentewan Beach Reviews (13)
Unfriendly residents... I THINK NOT!!
Andy, DevonJul 24th 2021
The wife and I have been regular visitors to Pentewan, it’s beautiful village and surrounding walks, for the past 15 years or so. Never once have we been made unwelcome by businesses or residents. Anyone who has had a bad experience must have either done something to upset people or have may have been crossed by second home owners.
Pentewan is a wonderful place. The beaches are superbly clean and clear. The main beach is privately owned and the owners have the right to stop anyone they want from using it. We have spent many wonderful weeks at Pentewan Sands and the only reason we don’t now is that they do not allow our newest family member, our dog. That does not stop us from visiting one of the friendliest places in Cornwall. The villagers appreciate tourist trade at any time of year. But bare in mind that the village is their home. They do not need aggressive or inconsiderate visitors. No doubt one or two of the negative reviewers will latch on to that last sentence and decide to deride me on this forum. Go ahead, it is folk like you to which I refer.
Thank you Pentewan for always being so lovely to visit.
We visit Pentewan beach every year and sometimes more. Fall more and more in love with the place each visit.
Beach is immaculate, and facilities are wonderful. Cornwall is, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful places in the world and we are lucky to have access to it.
Highly recommend the beach for families and couples. Lots of water sports and equipment to hire if you fancy taking out a kayak or paddle board.
What is the matter with people??
Some of the comments are unbelievable! The guy who took it personally about the no dogs….you have a dog go to a dog friendly beach…..the people who were offended by the villagers….there are parking issues wherever you go in the world and to be honest I can see the rationale of some of the more traditional residents objecting to tourists if they have had bad experiences. The bottom line is me and my family think this place is one of the best places on the planet….not all of it is our cup of tea we never use the club house facilities, try to go at quiet times of the year and to be perfectly honest the fish and chips on site are some of the worst I’ve ever had. As a base for a peaceful and beautiful break away the park is fantastic the caravans are well equipped and clean and the beach is where I go to recharge . The fact that you don’t have to go far from the site to a beautiful beach is a bonus and apart from an occasional trip to somewhere close like Mevigissy or Charlestown we don’t go anywhere. It may not be perfect for everyone but the negative comments are totally unwarranted. Go with peace and a positive attitude and you will be rewarded with a haven that you will want to return to time after time…..
Andy 41Jun 09th 2021
5 minute walk from Pentewan car park. Well kept , shallow waters, lots of interesting rocks/pebbles to find. Kids loved it. Grainy quartz type sand at the water but finer sand further back. Popular but not crowded. Nice Swings/slide on the beach also! Will be back.
PaulAug 07th 2023
Pentewan Beach is the best beach in Cornwall. Family friendly and others. Clean and safe. No dogs during the Summer, makes it even better.
Linda BlackabyAug 10th 2022
I went on a day trip here & it’s fantastic no dog poop, because dogs aren’t welcome on the beach . I love dogs & most owner’s are great at having dogs on leads in crowded places & picking up after them ,but it’s always the few who think the world owes them & they dog a favour by having others pick up after them . It’s a beautiful beach [ NO DOGS ] the ship pubs food is reasonably priced & well worth a visit . The village is pretty & small , picture post card . If you like a old fashioned [ IN A GOOD WAY ] holiday this is the place to go take a book & unwind . The beach has white sands is very clean as is the village . PS I have owned dogs & I now own a indoor cat .
SteveJul 16th 2022
After reading the comments, I m definitely going. No dogs and interesting locals. Sounds awesome.
I ll post a review here in August when I m back..????
Sad what Pentewan has become
Pentewan used to be my local beach and was ‘pleasantly neglected’. It was lovely if you wanted a quiet time on the protected beach and you could easily avoid the camping site if you wanted to. We knew it’s a special beach with sharp coarse sand - a leftover from china clay mining days.
Now the pub has taken over the peaceful green over the road and the campsite has taken over the whole beach. NO DOGS anywhere near the beach 1st March to 1st November (signs everywhere). A bizarre car parking machine which has a queue of people trying to understand how it works. The toilets have a massive locks and charge 20p (tbh, post-Covid i’ve stopped carrying change!).
I can see why people get cross and locals crosser.
markOct 28th 2020
wow thanks for that we were thinking of visiting the area but maybe not now, so when Cornwalls on its knees struggling maybe its councilors will start to ask questions, as for the residents around there good luck, i will take my hard earned money eleswhere
(In response to other comments..) Well thank you for deigning to favour us with your custom and protect us from the ravishes of rural poverty we would otherwise face.. What you people don’t seem to get is that a) most of us don’t work in tourism and have “normal” jobs, maybe like yourself; and b) all that wonderful money you generously pump into our economy tends to be spent at Tescos or staying at an AirBnB owned by some posh tw@t from Surrey…
Personally it suits me fine if you all stay away and don’t over-burden our services and force up our water rates. Quite happy not to have to look at your smug faces as you swan around looking down on us, quietly wishing you could have gone to the Algarve instead…
Wow how awful they don’t want other English people in Cornwall! We are all from the same island and can go wherever we please NOONE owns the whole county (which is part of England whatever the small minded minority would like to believe) and they have absolutely no right to stop anyone from Yorkshire, Wales, Sussex or anywhere else in the U.K. from using any facilities or beaches they fancy ! If they don’t like it they need to move elsewhere! It’s a tourist destination which should be enjoyed by all who live in the U.K. not just those who happened to be born there … there’s always another location to go to if the people who live there are not happy????
Aggressive village residents
We have visited Pentewen for the last 15 years enjoying it’s gentle welcoming atmosphere. Unfortunately we will not be returning after the residents opposite the car park seem to be waging a war against tourists led by a rough aggressive woman who is attacking people verbally who park there and threatening to damage their vehicles.The residents are then standing outside shouting that they don’t want f****ing tourists visiting. It was really upsetting and has spoilt all the lovely memories that we had of the village.
Nick MilburnApr 28th 2021
Stopped for a nice walk on the beach, no dogs allowed… six signs to support that in case anyone can’t read…
Village is quiet and as welcoming as a grave…
much nicer spots to stop in where your made to feel welcome.