10 family days out to enjoy with your dog

There are lots of dog friendly days out in Cornwall, including some surprising dog friendly attractions such as animal rescue centres and art galleries. Here are a few of our favourites. Feel free to let us know of any others you think we should add to the list.



Cornish Seal Sanctuary, dog friendly days out in Cornwall. Copyright Viki WilsonCornish Seal Sanctuary, Gweek, near Helston

The team at the Cornish Seal Sanctuary rescue injured seals and rehabilitate them so they can be released back into the wild. Some seals stay on, and they live at the sanctuary along with sea lions, penguins, otters and the inhabitants of the wonderful rock pool displays. Dogs are welcome on leads.





Lappa Valley steam trainLappa Valley, near Newquay

The mini railway is the main attraction here, and you reach the main part of the grounds via a lovely steam train ride. There is also a boating lake, play areas and children’s rides, crazy golf and a cafe. Your dog can come along for the price of a £1 ticket.






Newlyn Art Gallery and The Exchange, Penzance

Both of these prestigious art galleries now allow well behaved dogs. Newlyn has been an historic centre of support for British painters and the exhibitions in the galleries are excellent.





Dog friendly day out at Pendennis Castle

Pendennis Castle, Falmouth

One of Henry VIII’s finest forts was built to protect the strategically important opening of the Fal estuary in Tudor times. Dogs are allowed on leads, and visitors can enjoy the magnificent keep, grounds, tea room and shop as well as brilliant historic exhibitions.




Port Eliot near St Germans

This fine Grade I listed building is set on a beautiful estate which has a history dating back to the 5th century AD. Ther eis also the beautiful St German’s Priory Church adjacent, known as the finest historic church in Cornwall. Dogs are allowed in the grounds on a lead and also in the Long Gallery Tearoom




Helston MuseumHelston Museum

Housed in Helston’s former Market House and Drill Hall, Helston Museum has some fascinating collections, and this is an ideal day out come rain or shine. Inside you can find exhibitions about archeology and geology on the Lizard Peninsula, a huge social history collection covering everything from toys to gardening equipment from the area in days gone by. There’s also a large costume collection, exhibited in the Martin Matthews Costume Gallery.





Cornwall at War MuseumCornwall At War Museum, Davidstow

Well behaved dogs on a lead are very welcome at the Cornwall at War Museum adjacent to the WWII RAF Davidstow Moor near Camelford. The museum is dedicated to the Royal Navy, Army and the RAF and is based on the former Officer’s Site. There are 19 display buildings including our new aircraft and military vehicle Hangar.
This is not your usual museum with regimented rows of display cases, this fascinating and intriguing museum with a few surprises along the way!! Look out for the Animals at War display, pigeons to elephants and lots in between. There is also a children’s play area and picnic tables. They offer basic hot and cold drinks and snacks but feel free to bring your own pasty. cornwallatwarmuseum.co.uk



Godolphin House and Estate

Godolphin House, near Helston, was one of the most fashionable houses in Cornwall in the 17th century.  You can still feel the elegant atmosphere and its antiquity when you wander around the lush estate and woodland.    If you visit Godolphin Hill on the south-westerly side of the estate, you can seem some amazing views across St Ives Bay to the north and St Michael’s Mount to the south.

Well behaved dogs are warmly welcomed on the estate, providing that they are kept on a lead in the gardens and in the tea-room.



Charlestown Shipwreck and Heritage Centre

If you’re interested in Cornwall’s maritime history, the delightful port of Charlestown should definitely be on your list of places to visit. It has a working harbour and you can sometimes glimpse working tall ships as they come in to dock.  The port itself has been used as a film setting for numerous period dramas and TV series, including The Three Musketeers and Poldark.


The Shipwreck and Heritage centre is a real gem.  It includes treasures from over 150 shipwrecks and is the largest private collection of this type on public display in Europe. Brought together over the last 45 to 50 years, it forms the basis of one of the most unusual and interesting collections open to the public.  Dogs on a lead are really welcome  – with their well behaved owners!




Holywell Bay

Approximately six miles west of Newquay, Holywell Bay has gathered recent fame as a Poldark filming location. To be honest, it is also just a beautiful wide and soft beach with lovely sandunes and a river leading to it.  Popular with families, dogs are welcome all year round and it is a lovely way to spend a lazy summer day with your loved ones and your canine companions.

If you fancy a spot of lunch, try the local Treguth Inn at Holywell Bay Village or St Pirans which is beside the beach – both establishments are dog friendly and will provide water and dog biscuits for your dog.


Rainy day? Click here for some dog friendly rainy days out in Cornwall.