no alt text

Bucket list experience:

Last updated: 25 April, 2023

Cornwall is renowned for fresh and locally sourced food – attracting foodies from the world over.

Ingredients and flavours are strongly influenced by its coastal location and farming heritage. The region is especially known for outstanding seafood, with dishes such as fish and chips, crab sandwiches, and Cornish pasties being popular staples. It’s home to several artisanal cheese makers, producing award-winning cheeses such as Cornish Blue and Yarg, and produces the world’s best clotted cream.

In terms of drinks, Cornwall is known for its brewing and distilling industries, with a number of exceptional local distilleries producing award-winning spirits, beers and ales. The region also boasts a burgeoning wine industry, notably for award-winning still and sparkling wines, and excellent cideries.

Cooking styles vary from simple to exotic and environments from casual to smart, although the emphasis is on excellent produce, simply cooked, and served in a laid-back beach café or gastropub.

What to try

Cornish pasties – meat- and veg-filled pastry shells that started life as fuel for miners, and a Cornish cream tea consisting of scones smothered in jam and world-renowned Cornish clotted cream.

For drinks, don’t leave without trying the locally-made sparkling wines, ciders and artisan gins.

You can visit most of the farms, distilleries and breweries to see the produce being made. See our recommendations below.

Food markets

Whatever the season your sojourn, you can stock up on fresh goodies to eat or take home at a Farmers Market close by, with many hosting weekly events for much of the year.

Top picks include Sennen, St Ives, Bude, Pendeen, Helston and Truro. Fill your boots (and reusable carrier bags) with anything from the odd piece of art and craft to meats, hand-made farmstead cheeses, free-range poultry, eggs, fruit, vegetables and locally made fare such as chocolate, bread and cakes.

The dining scene

For top-notch eating and drinking, head to Padstow (which is home to four Rick Stein restaurants plus Paul Ainsworth at Number 6) or Falmouth’s Discovery Quay area. Watergate Bay near Newquay is usually a lively spot, with both Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Cornwall and The Beach Hut, and there are other great beach cafés in Bude, St Ives, Sennen Cove, Falmouth, and on the Rame Peninsula.

Cornwall is liberally scattered with traditional pubs, many serving local ales, ciders and micro-brews. Newquay is Cornwall’s party town, but with a lairy, binge-drinking scene, it’s best avoided.

children making chocolate at cocos kitchen

Chocolate-making workshops at Coco Kitchen

St Ives, Cornwall, United Kingdom (UK)

Families and chocoholics will love these chocolate workshops, that see you designing, moulding and decorating a variety of chocolate treats (that you take home after). A brilliant group experience for all ages, with special activities even for the toddlers.

Best for ages: 4+ | £25 | 1 hour

Website >
Overview >
No Image Available for this listing

Colwith Farm Distillery

Lostwithiel, Cornwall, United Kingdom (UK)

This plough-to-bottle distillery, owned and run by the Dustow family, has mastered the art of transforming their potatoes into award-winning spirits, notably gin. You can book in for tours of the distillery and gin tastings, and courses to make your own custom bottle of gin.

Best for ages: 18+ | Free

Website >
Overview >
Price: Free
Minimum age: Any
Age suitable: 13+
When: All year around
Duration: -

Our writer’s picks of the best places to stay near this experience, closest first

Boskerris Hotel

St Ives, Cornwall, United Kingdom (UK)

A beautifully chic, beautifully run boutique hotel outside St Ives, with stunning ocean views. No kids under 16.

Official star rating:

Fowey Hall Hotel

Fowey, Cornwall, United Kingdom (UK)

Lovely country house family hotel, located in the beautiful town of Fowey, with five acres of landscaped gardens and woodlands. Close to the Eden Project.

Official star rating:

Hotel Tresanton

St Mawes, Cornwall, United Kingdom (UK)

Elegant, waterfront family hotel offering quiet sophistication in the yacht-filled harbour town of St Mawes.  A Cornish, if not world, classic.

Official star rating:

Polurrian on the Lizard

Helston, Cornwall, United Kingdom (UK)

Cliff-top boutique hotel on the isolated Lizard, on the South West Coast Path and close to glorious beaches – great for families.

Official star rating:

Destination guides including or relevant to this experience


Cornwall, United Kingdom (UK)

A region of craggy cliffs, sheltered creeks, glorious sandy beaches and quintessential villages – rich in local life, pagan legend and delicious, locally-made food and drink.

Website >
Overview >