Arrive in Falmouth
Below you will find a detailed description based on our 7 Day & 8 Night Itinerary. Your first overnight will be in Falmouth where its worth arriving early to explore the bustling seaside town. Plenty of shops, cafes and restaurants line the streets and there are many local beaches near the town for a relaxing stroll.
It is a 5 and a half hour train ride from London to Falmouth which does involve a change in Truro. Alternatively you can fly to Newquay where you can take the bus (2hrs) which involves a couple of changes.
Falmouth to Portloe - 14 m (22km)
After your first night in Falmouth, you start todays adventure by taking 2 small passenger ferries, firstly across to St Mawes and then to Place where the walk starts its route to Portloe. Its worth having a look around St Mawes with its wonderful clover leaf design Castle which was built by Henry VIII. From Place you follow the trail around St Anthony's Peninsular passing the coastal church and prominent lighthouse. Sandy beaches and small valleys bring you round to Portscatho which is an ideal resting point and lunch spot. From here the path follows low cliffs and quiet bays past Veryan Castle to Nare Head where you can see fantastic views across to Veryan Bay. Passing more coves the trail ends up reaching the tiny harbour at Potloe fronted by jagged black rocks and an unspoilt harbour.
Portloe to Mevagissey - 12 m (19km)
From Portloe, todays walk starts off by passing West and East Portholland which are both small isolated hamlets, each with only a scatter of houses. Porthluney beach is a great resting point today with its fabulous beach and a well earned rest from the cliff walking. Caerhays Castle stands behind the bay which is worth having a look at and especially its glorious gardens. The path continues along and climbs up to Dodman Point where the views are spectacular both back to Lizard and onward. Following on, Gorran Haven is a nice resting point and soon you reach Mevagissey, a working fishing village with a busy harbour, narrow backstreets and quaint shops.
Mevagissey to Charlestown - 8 miles (13km)
Leaving the harbour today you head up to Penare Point passing many overgrown ruins and leading up to the small harbour at Pentewan, The village is worth a visit with a nice pub and a café. Following on past the golden sands you head up past Gamas Point and uphill to the rugged Black Head where the Iron Age Castle used to sit proudly on the cliff top. The path heads back down to the coastline and then takes an inland turn towards the back of St Austells bay. You end up in Charlestown with its tall ships and very interesting visitors centre.
Charlestown to Fowey - 10 m (16km)
From Charlestown the path heads round St Austell’s Bay and crosses the wide and spacious Par Sands before entering the wild and remote area at Gribbin Head. A fabulous viewpoint marked with a candy striped daymark tower stands 84 feet above the cliffs. The Daphne Du Marier coastline follows where much of her novels were written and inspiration sought. At Polridmouth a hidden beach opens to reveal the boathouse where the author lived for years. The path into Fowey passes many coves and then you pass St Catherine’s Castle perched on the coastline. Wander through the remains before you finally reach the village of Fowey with its many bars, restaurants and natural harbour.
Fowey to Looe - 13 m (21km)
Today you start off by catching a small passenger ferry across to Polruan. Its quite a steep start to the walk today heading up to the cliff tops but you will be rewarded with some fabulous views. The route today is very remote and wild with plenty of cliff top walking on route to Looe. Head down to the unspoilt beach of Lantic Bay with its turquoise sea. Polperro is a great stop for a refreshment en route and after here the walking becomes a little easier through the pretty village of Talland Bay. The final section to Looe is along the seawall with some fantastic views across to St Georges Island.
Looe to Portwrinkle - 9 m (14.5km)
The walk from Looe to Portwrinkle starts by passing the holiday parks at Millendreath and then the path climbs up to Bodigga Cliff. Some lovely woodland walking up on the cliffs follows until you head down to Seaton Beach where there is a lovely little beach café to take a well deserved rest. You head through Downderry and if the tide is out you can walk along the beach. A zig zagged path leads up to Batten Heights which is the highest point on the whole cornwall coast at 461ft. The path continues around Whitesands Bay to finish the days walk in the pretty fishing village of Portwrinkle.
Portwrinkle to Plymouth - 12m (19km)
This last day to Plymouth is a varied day of woodland, cliff tops and beach walking. The path passes behind Tregantle Fort which was originally built to protect Plymouth from the sea and then heads along the top of Long Sands beach. The view point at Rame Head is a highlight where the views are wonderful. From here you head around and up to Cawsand and Kingsand Bay which are both great lunch stops. Woodland walking follows through Mount Edgecumbe County park and then on to Cremyll where you take the ferry across to Plymouth. The last couple of miles of the walk follow the warterfront walkway to Plymouth Hoe where your accommodation is booked for your final night.
Our standard itinerary starts in Falmouth and finishes in Plymouth, although we can reverse this on request.
We recommend adding extra nights in Mevagissey where you can visit the Lost Gardens of Heligan and the Eden Project. Another place to add an extra night is in Plymouth at the end of your walk. Additional nights can be added at any point on the walk.
If you wish to reduce the number of nights we can tailor your trip to suit.
Tailor Made Holidays
We are always more than happy to tailor our standard itineraries to suit. Just let us know what you would like and we will be happy to arrange it for you.
This holiday is graded from moderate to strenuous depending on the itinerary you choose. Although you follow the coast quite closely it includes plenty of up and down and some steep sections.
The route is well way marked and easy to follow. We supply detailed maps and guidebooks so you shouldn’t have any problem finding your way.
You will stay in hand picked B&B’s, guesthouses and small hotels, normally either 3 or 4 star.
We always book rooms with ensuite bathrooms, unless nothing else is available, in which case we will let you know in advance. We always try and book your accommodation as close as possible to the line of the trail. Occasionally a short transfer may be required and this is always included in the price of your holiday.
If you require single rooms we would be happy to accommodate you, subject to availability. There is a single room supplement payable.
Solo walkers are welcome, but there is a solo walker supplement to cover the additional cost of luggage transfer.
A hearty breakfast is included each morning. Most of your accommodations will be more than happy to provide a packed lunch on request and this can be booked on arrival. Dinner is available either at your accommodation or nearby pubs or restaurants.
Your bags will be transferred from your accommodation as per your itinerary and moved onto your next overnight accommodation. We ask you to limit your luggage to one bag of up to 20kg per person.
Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard walking gear such as good walking boots or shoes, warm and waterproof clothes and a day pack.
Unfortunately we are unable to accommodate walkers with dogs as many of the accommodation providers do not accept pets.
Getting to Falmouth
By Air - Newquay Airport is the closest airport and is served by Flybe and Air Southwest from UK Airports. The closest international airports are Bristol and London.
By Rail/Bus - You can reach Falmouth from London by train which takes 6 hours, this does involve a couple of changes.
By Car - There is parking in Falmouth but again it can be very busy. Here is a website with some car parks listed in Falmouth.
Getting from Plymouth
By Air - Plymouth Airport is the closest airport and is served by Air Southwest from UK Airports. The closest international airports are Bristol and London.
By Rail/Bus - You can reach London from Plymouth by a direct train in approx. 3 hrs 20 mins. To plan your travel please visit the travelline website.
By Car - There is limited parking in Plymouth.
If you need to get back to Falmouth from Plymouth then you can take a train via Truro to Penmere and then walk to the centre of Falmouth (2 .5hrs)
We are often asked the following questions and I hope that you will find the answers useful.
Please don’t hesitate to contact us for more advice from our clients and team.
How fit do I need to be?
Although you are following the coast the ascents and descents are often steep and you will need strong knees and a good level of hill fitness. If you currently don’t enjoy that level of fitness, regular walking in hilly terrain supplemented by cardio vascular exercise for at least 3 months prior to your walk is recommended. A good gym or personal trainer will be able to draw up a personalised training programme.
Do I need to be able to Navigate?
Yes, but it's really easy. The path is well waymarked throughout and we supply a detailed map and guidebook so you shouldn't have any problem following the trail.
How far in advance do I need to book?
We suggest you book as soon as your plans are finalised as Cornwall is extremely popular over the summer months. Even if you are booking last minute we will always try and accommodate your plans, so please do give us a shout.
What personal equipment do I need?
You will need good walking boots (ideally waterproof), comfortable walking clothes, waterproof jacket and trousers, a daypack and hats/gloves etc. You can download a full equipment list from our website downloads page and we will send you a list as part of your info pack.
When is the best time of year?
My favourites are April, May and June when the spring flowers are out and September and October when the summer holiday makers have gone home.
Am I able to take my dog?
Unfortunately we are unable to accommodate walkers with dogs as many of the accommodation providers we use do not accept pets.
What happens if I can’t walk a stage?
You can use public transport, local taxis or our baggage van may be able to move you to the next overnight stop. Full details are included in your info pack.
This holiday is available March to October. You can start your holiday on any date in the season. To make a provisional reservation select "Book" for the itinerary you are interested in.
Option prices will be displayed as part of the booking process.
Because every walking holiday we book is unique availability changes from day to day and our booking process works as follows:
- You provisionally book the tour you are interested in for your preferred dates and pay a 20% deposit online or by phone.
- We confirm availability and book all your accommodation and options and send final confirmation as soon as everything is confirmed (max 5 working days).
- If we are unable to accommodate you on your confirmed dates/tour or an alternative of your choice your deposit is fully refunded.
||South West Coast Path - Falmouth to Plymouth
||6 - 7 Days
||Falmouth to Plymouth
||8 Days & 7 Nights
||Falmouth to Plymouth
||9 Days & 8 Nights
- Bed and breakfast accommodation in ensuite rooms wherever possible.
- Door to door baggage transfer.
- A detailed info pack, guidebook and map.
- Emergency telephone support from our office in the event of a problem.
- Lunches, dinners, snacks and drinks.
- Travel Insurance.
- Transport should you need to skip a stage.
- Travel to/from Falmouth/Plymouth.
- Additional nights before, during or after the walk
- Single room supplements
- Solo walker supplements