The 8 St Ives Beaches in Cornwall

St Ives is a popular and bustling Cornish seaside town that has a choice of 8 great beaches, all with different characteristics, and three St Ives beaches are dog-friendly. St Ives is very busy and can get some bad press, but it is still one of our favourite locations to base a stay in Cornwall with great beach options, town and easy access to Cornwall attractions.

This article will focus on the beaches with links to our more detailed beach information pages. We will start on the Atlantic coast and go clockwise into St. Ives Bay.

Porthmeor Beach

Porthmeor Beach, St Ives

Porthmeor Beach is the only St Ives beach with an Atlantic-facing aspect, as all the others face into St Ives Bay. If you want good surfing on Atlantic rollers, Porthmeor is the beach to head for and where the surf schools are based.

Porthmeor is a good family surfing beach with local options to get food and is located in front of the Tate St Ives.

Porthgwidden Beach

Porthgwidden Beach, St Ives

The next beach is around St Ives head and is Porthgwidden Beach, which is a smaller sheltered beach backed by a row of beach huts with some interesting rocks to explore.

Bamaluz Beach

Bamaluz beach, St Ives, Cornwall

Just outside of the harbour wall is the small sand and rocky Bamaluz Beach, this is a dog-friendly beach that all but disappears at high tide.

St Ives Harbour Beach

St Ives Harbour Beach

St Ives Harbour Beach is a sheltered beach within the harbour walls, backed by the promenade and harbourside shops, cafes and restaurants. Great safe location to rent out boats, kayaks or stand-up paddle (SUP) boards.

Lambeth Beach

Pebble Sculpture at Lambeth Beach

The next beach after the harbour is Lambeth Beach, and at high tide, you will walk straight by this as it disappears. But, when the tide is out, you get a rocky beach with some sandy areas, and you can walk around to the harbour beach. This is the second dog-friendly beach in St. Ives.

This beach is well known for people making pebble sculptures in the rocks.

Porthminster Beach

Porthminster beach, St Ives, Cornwall

The next sandy beach is the large Porthminster Beach, which sits near the train station and is probably the main family-friendly beach in St Ives, with plenty of activities available and options to get food and drink.

Carbis Bay Beach

Carbis Bay beach, St Ives, Cornwall

The beach at Carbis Bay is just along the southwest coast path, and you can either walk from the town or take one stop on the St Ives branch line train. It is a large beach but with fewer facilities than Porthminster, as it is linked to the Carbis Bay Resort.

Porthkidney Sands

Porth Kidney Sands, St Ives, Cornwall

The last beach on our trip is the large dog-friendly Porthkidney Sands, and as it is harder to get to, it also has plenty of space and an extensive sand dune system to explore. The beach has no facilities, although it does have seasonal lifeguards by the Hayle estuary. To access it, you will need to take a 10-minute coastal path walk from Carbis Bay or park at the estuary end.

As well as the seven listed St Ives beaches, you can choose the 3-mile Hayle beach and sand dunes over the estuary. This gets similar Atlantic rollers as Porthmeor Beach and is very popular with surfers.