Child friendly days out in Cornwall

Child looking over a wall at St Mawes in Cornwall, looking out to the water and the boats going passed.

There’s much more to a family holiday in Cornwall than just visiting the beach (although the beaches are fantastic). There’s plenty to do in Cornwall all year round, even when the weather isn’t perfect.

If you’ve been reading Nanny Pat’s blogs, you’ll know that she loves getting outdoors with grandchildren Wilf and Megan as much as possible. As the saying goes, there’s no such thing as the wrong kind of weather, just the wrong kind of clothing! Cool but dry and sunny days are ideal for getting out and about – just wrap up warm and off you go.


Many attractions stay open throughout the year. For families with babies, toddlers and pre-school children, there’s the added bonus that under 5s get in free in most places.

Here’s our round-up of some of the best child friendly days out in Cornwall within easy reach of Bosinver.

1. Cardinham Woods, near Bodmin
There are several walking and cycling trails – and a good playground. An old woodsman’s cottage has been converted into a welcoming cafe offering homemade stews and soups as well as sandwiches, cakes and cream teas.

2. Blue Reef Aquarium, Newquay
Discover the mysterious world under the sea with a visit to Blue Reef Aquarium. Your ticket allows you to go in and out as much as you like throughout the day, so it can easily be combined with time on the beach. Nanny Pat visited recently with Wilf and Megan – read her blog about the day to find out more.

3. The Cornish Seal Sanctuary, Gweek
The Cornish Seal Sanctuary rescues and rehabilitates several seals each year, before releasing them back into the wild. You can see some of the current residents as well as penguins and otters. Feeding times and the wonderful underwater viewing areas are always popular.

4. Wheal Martyn, St Austell
Wheal Martyn is one of the nearest attractions to Bosinver. Find out more about the China Clay industry that shaped the landscape around St Austell and enjoy 26 acres of woodland walks and nature trails.

5. Heartlands, nr Redruth
With lots of interactive exhibits and activities and a diverse programme of events, you can easily spend a whole day here – and the best thing is, it’s free.

6. Glendurgan Garden, near Falmouth
A visit to Glendurgan feels like a proper adventure – there’s so much here to explore. The maze at the centre of the garden is always a hit with kids (and adults)!

7. Wingz Bird Sanctuary, Par
One for the animal lovers. Meet parrots, cockatoos, toucans, meerkats and marmosets and more. Although you can’t take them home with you, could could adopt one of the birds or animals and help support the sanctuary.


8. Eden Project, St Austell
The Eden Project is great during the school holidays, when there are loads of activities on for children of all ages.

9. National Maritime Museum Cornwall, Falmouth
Find out more about Cornwall’s maritime history with a visit to the National Maritime Museum Cornwall. With lots of interactive exhibits, there’s plenty to keep the whole family entertained. Don’t forget to check out the best view in Falmouth from the top of the Lookout Tower.

10. St Mawes Castle, St Mawes

Who doesn’t love a castle? St Mawes is small but perfectly formed, which makes it a great option for families with young children. There’s plenty of outside space to run around (and to enact those imaginary battles). Alternatively, if you’re planning a day out in Falmouth, you could visit Pendennis Castle instead.

For more ideas for great family days out in Cornwall, try Day Out With the Kids.

What’s your favourite child friendly attraction in Cornwall – and why? Is there anywhere you go back to again and again or would recommend for a particular age group?

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Action Nan and the rest of the team are always busy writing posts that we think you’ll like – from top tips on where to take the kids, to what’s likely to be going on in the local area when you stay – we’ve got it all in our blog!