Higher Pendeen Camping

UK England South West England Cornwall Newquay

  • Campfires allowed
  • Short walk to pub
  • Beaches nearby
  • Good walks nearby
  • Walking
A gloriously tiny back-to-basics campsite between Newquay and Padstow in North Cornwall

Cornwall is one of our favourite camping destinations. And one of yours. And one of everyone else’s, it seems. The sun, the sand, the surf, the countryside and clotted cream... the delights of England’s westernmost county tempt millions of us to visit every year. But wouldn’t it be nice to rewind the years to a time when the campsites weren’t quite so crowded? We haven’t got a time machine but we can let you in on a little secret; some quiet campsites still exist in Cornwall – and one of them is Higher Pendeen Camping.

This rare Cornish gem is a tucked-away, farm-based campsite within walking distance of a beach. It allows campfires and hosts just a handful of campers at a time. It’s a back-to-basics kind of place, where motorhomes and caravans are not allowed, and cars are parked outside of the camping field. There are just five pitches here which can be hired for campers’ own tents or for one of the site’s bell tents. The smart money is on the latter. Reasonably priced, with the extra cost more than made-up for in convenience; bell tents are pitched for you and have beds included, saving you time on arrival and space in the car.

Although bell tent glamping is part of the attraction of this site, it’s not aiming to offer luxury stays. Facilities are basic, the ground is uneven and the sights, sounds and smells of the farm are part of its charm. The Sterling family have been here for four generations and the campsite has been built with their sustainable farming ethos in mind. This means a composting toilet, eco-friendly loo rolls, recycling points and limited light and noise pollution. It also means starry nights, abundant wildlife and a quiet, relaxing atmosphere where you can forget about the crowds at Cornwall’s tourist hotspots.

Having said that, with a location midway between Newquay and Padstow – it’s not too far to visit either but we reckon most campers will be content with the more local charms. It’s a 10-minute walk across the farm to Mawgan Porth, where golden sands are backed by rockpools. You can join the South West Coast Path here and the village has places to eat and drink including some pretty swish options. Book a meal out if you fancy it but don’t miss the chance to have the catch of the day delivered to camp by one of site owner Liz’s contacts in the local fishing fleet. Cook it on your campfire and enjoy with some of the farm’s own produce for a true taste of Cornwall.

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Details

Facilities

One compost toilet and one “see the stars” open-air shower. The drinking water tap doubles as the place to collect water for washing up. Campfires are allowed, fire pits are provided and logs are available to buy on site. Fresh farm produce is also available in season.

Suitable For

Campers, glampers, families, couples – yes. Caravans, motorhomes, campervans, dogs – no.

Nearby

The campsite is located within a 25-acre farm. Mown pathways allow campers to explore (when cows are not in the fields) and it’s a 10-minute walk across the farm to Mawgan Porth, and the nearest beach. There’s a recommended surf school, King Surf (01637 860091) on the shore and you can join the South West Coast Path to walk towards well-known Newquay (five miles) or Padstow (10 miles on the road, longer on the coastal path); a handy bus means you don’t have to walk back. If you head in the direction of Padstow you pass the stunning coastal rock formations, the Bedruthan Steps. Despite being a rustic, back-to-basics site it is thoroughly modern in someways and has a handy app-based guestbook with more suggestions. Plus, owners Liz and Mike have a wealth of knowledge on the local area and are happy to offer tips. There’s also plenty more information on things to do in the area on the Visit Cornwall website.

Food & Drink

Campers are spoilt for choice when it comes to local produce as fresh eggs and vegetables from the farm are on offer when in season and Liz is happy to organise deliveries from the local fishermen, butchers, bakers and honeymakers. There is a small grocery store in Mawgan Porth, a 10-minute walk, from site and there are supermarkets in Newquay and Padstow. For a smoothie by the beach try Beach Box Cafe (01208 895576), for lunch or dinner there’s The Kitchen By The Beach (01637 860594) and for a pub atmosphere try The Merrymoor Inn (01637 860258) or head inland to St Mawgan and The Falcon Inn (01637 860225). For a sea view and a fancy dinner try The Scarlet (01637 861800) or head to Padstow where there are plenty of options including, of course, Rick Stein’s famous seafood restaurant (01841 532700).

Opening Times

March–October.

Why book with Cool Camping?

  • Best Price Guarantee, with no fees
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  • Trusted for over 10 years
  • A chance to win prizes in our regular competitions

The Owner Says

A rustic, family-run, friendly, off-grid and ecologically considerate back to basics camping site, built on our sustainable farming ethos, with a small but perfectly formed selection of furnished, canvas bell tents and limited open pitches.

Pitches

Five pitches for hired bell tents or campers’ own tents.

Bell Tent

Pre-pitched tent Sleeps 4
5m Furnished Bell Tent

Bell Tent

Pre-pitched tent Sleeps 4
5m Furnished Bell Tent

Bell Tent

Pre-pitched tent Sleeps 4
5m Furnished Bell Tent

Grass Pitch

Grass pitch Sleeps 4
6m Circular Grass Pitch

Grass Pitch

Grass pitch Sleeps 4
6m Circular Grass Pitch

Exclusive Site Hire

Exclusive Site Hire Sleeps 20
Exclusive Hire of all 5 of our Bell Tents

Check Availability

Location

Contact Higher Pendeen Camping, Gluvian Farm, Mawgan Porth, Newquay, Cornwall TR8 4BG

Show Map

Getting There

Head towards Newquay Airport. Pass the entrance and when you reach a T-junction, turn right on to the B3276. After about a mile-and-a-half, you reach Mawgan Porth. Pass the beach and cross the river, and take the third right. Higher Pendeen Camping will be on the right and is signposted from this road.

The A5 bus between Newquay and Padstow calls in at Mawgan Porth, a 10-minute walk from the campsite. The closest railway station is at Newquay.

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Why book with Cool Camping?

  • Best Price Guarantee, with no fees
  • Instant booking confirmation
  • Trusted for over 10 years
  • A chance to win prizes in our regular competitions

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