One of my favourite things about North Cornwall is the food. Being on the coast there’s a huge focus on fresh and simple seafood. And of course an abundance of another – considerably more stodgy favourite – the Cornish pasty! As we travel with kids and a dog, the restaurants need to be both child and pet friendly. But that doesn’t mean we want to sacrifice on quality or design and spend ages researching our options. Over the years I’ve narrowed it down to a few favourites so here is my list of the best restaurants in North Cornwall. You can visit with kids and dogs or without!
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Top of the list and one we return to again and again is the Lewinnick Lodge. Located just outside of Fistral (one of the best beaches in North Cornwall) near Newquay on the Pentire peninsular. My favourite part of this restaurant with rooms is the outdoor seating area, the views are absolutely breathtaking and it feels surprisingly sheltered considering how high up you are on the cliffs.
The food is also an extremely high standard with the usual Cornish seafood options and some fabulous smaller plates for when you’re not too hungry. I highly recommend the seafood tagliatelle and the lamb kofta, both absolutely delicious and beautifully presented. Specials change regularly and there’s always a catch of the day supplied by local fisherman right out of Cornish waters.
The kids menu is absolutely wonderful and not restricted to nuggets and chips as is often the case. There are plenty of healthy options like chicken salad and meze. Piper had the Beef Ragu which she totally wolfed down, then the warm chocolate brownie which was another big win. I love that they are open from midday until ten meaning you don’t have to wait for dinner service if you have kids who get hungry early.
Dogs are welcome anywhere indoors and out, we just took some bedding and Holly was happy to curl up under our table for our entire meal.
After dinner I suggest a walk around the Pentire headland for some amazing views back to Newquay or across to neighbouring Crantock. Even better if you can make it at the end of the day. The sunsets are breathtaking.
Read more reviews of the Lewinnick Lodge here.
01637 878 117
Part pub, part foodie heaven. The Cornish Arms in St Merryn is part of Rick Steins Cornish empire. The vibe here is chilled, welcoming and super dog friendly.
The menu is simple and small but you’re bound to find something you like, trust me, it’s all delicious! Although Rick Stein is known for his seafood, and you’re guaranteed to find something fishy on the menu, the Cornish Arms is famous for its legendary Sunday lunches during the winter months. It’s the perfect way to warm up after a day at the beach.
The Cornish Arms has a huge beer garden for those who prefer to dine outside and currently has an overflow tented area which is a lovely place to spend a few hours. If it’s cold outdoors, you can always head indoors to the cosy log fires and intimate seating areas.
The Cornish Ams is located near Padstow on the way to gorgeous Harlyn Bay. It’s surrounded by fields but easily accessible off the B3276. The wine list is so good I highly recommend getting a taxi and making a long afternoon of it.
The Cornish Arms has worked hard to ensure customers feel as safe as possible. All areas are one way only and clearly signposted. All cutlery is single use, sanitised and arrives in a sealed plastic bag and all staff will give you plenty of space.
Dogs are welcome both in the pub and beer garden, keep them on a lead and bring something for them to lie on. They’ll be more than happy!
Read more reviews of the Cornish Arms here.
The Herring at the Bedruthan Hotel
The Herring is a wonderful restaurant to visit whether you’re staying at the Bedruthan hotel or not. Offering amazing views out to sea over beautiful wildflowers. It’s one of the priciest of this list of restaurants in North Cornwall but has the food quality to match.
Meals are pretty much all prepared with fresh local ingredients both from sea and land. You’ll find slow cooked fish stews next to crispy belly pork, the only trouble you’ll have is deciding!
The Bedruthan Hotel and Spa is one of the most child friendly hotels I’ve visited in the UK and their cheery welcome extends right to the restaurant. They have an expansive kids menu and plenty to keep the little ones entertained whilst the grown ups enjoy their meal. Final dining times for kids younger than 7 is 6.30pm. Kids and dogs are welcome in the upstairs wild cafe at any time.
After dinner make sure you take a drink on the outdoor terrace of the hotel bar. This is my favourite place to watch the sun set in North Cornwall.
The Herring Restaurant is currently only open to residents of the Bedruthan Hotel. Hopefully this will change soon.
Read more reviews of the Herring Restaurant here.
Bedruthan Hotel and Spa,
Watchful Mary at Watergate Bay
The Watchful Mary is a great place for lunch during a day at the beach. Located at Watergate Bay hotel, right on the sea wall I love spending a few hours here watching the surfers chase their next great wave.
The design is absolutely stunning, relaxed enough that you’re not worried about the kids knocking things over but pretty enough to make you feel you’ve found somewhere special. They often have DJs playing on lazy summer evenings, it’s the perfect way to end a day at the beach.
Food is simple pizza style flatbreads, all great quality. They also serve some fabulous cocktails if you’re lucky enough to be staying in the area.
Read more reviews of the Watchful Mary here.
The Watchful Mary is currently closed for the season.
On The Beach
Golden Lion Port Isaac
If you like your lunch with a side of smuggler tales then the Golden Lion at Port Isaac is the place for you. This 18th century pub is practically bursting with history and character.
If you’re very lucky, you’ll be invited down to the bloody bones bar to see old smugglers tunnels used to hide those bringing in illegal goods. Kids will just lap up all these old stories and will spend the meal imagining they’re dining with pirates!
Food is rustic and delicious with a small menu, usually with a catch of the day option. They will always have a cask ale on and of course plenty of Cornish cider.
They do have a kids menu so just ask if you need one. There is very limited outdoor seating but this where the best views of the harbour can be found. Dogs are welcome in the pub if they remain on a lead.
Read more reviews of the Golden Lion here.
10 Fore Street
Outlaws Fish Kitchen
Also in located in Port Isaac is Outlaws Fish Kitchen. Run by celebrity chef Nathan Outlaw. This is fine dining with a view and doesn’t come cheap. Best to leave the dog at home for this one and treat yourself.
This is a modern yet cosy restaurant right in the centre of Port Isaac and somewhere I’ve spent many birthday celebrations. Food is high end seafood mainly and they are currently only serving one set menu at £80 per person. Ouch!
Unfortunately under tens are not allowed at Outlaws Fish Kitchen. The Fish Kitchen is currently open Tuesday till Saturday.
Read more reviews of Outlaws here.
1 Middle Street
01208 881 183
Probably the coolest of this list of restaurants in North Cornwall is the uber relaxed Bowgie Inn located to the left of Crantock beach on the west Pentire headland. The views are stunning as the pub is perched on the top of the headland with a large outdoor seating area for when the weather is good. This is another great place for sunday lunch in North Cornwall. Their kids meals are all served in a cute box and are great value at under £7.
Children are welcome in the designated family areas indoors but if you’re visiting with a dog, you’ll need to be seated outdoors.
My phone died after a day spent at Vugga Cove so unfortunately I don’t have any pictures. Just another excuse to return I suppose!
Read more reviews of the Bowgie Inn here.
The Bowgie Inn,
The Port William
Another pub with a great view of the sea is the Port William at Trebawith Beach near Tintagel. Perched on the coastal path, overlooking the sand it’s the ideal place to sit and wait for the tide to retreat or head to after a long day on the sand to watch the waves return.
The design of the pub is cosy and modern with a long bar and spotless facilities. The Fish and Chip dinner here is the best I’ve had in Cornwall. And that’s saying something! Dogs and kids are welcome at the Port William, they have a great value kids menu although my daughter always goes for the large sizes!
Read more reviews of the Port William here.
Another Rick Stein restaurant to make it on to the list is the Seafood restaurant in the town of Padstow. My favourite thing about this restaurant is the seafood bar at it’s centre. Serving the freshest fish and shell fish available. The upstairs, outdoor terrace is a wonderful place to soak up the sun and enjoy the views across the Camel Estuary. The children’s menu is small but fabulous. Quality ingredients reign here.
Unfortunately the Seafood restaurant is not dog friendly and children under 3 are not allowed.
The Seafood Restaurant
Read more reviews of the Seafood Restaurant here.
Old Albion Inn
The last on the list is the Old Albion Inn in Crantock. We’ve only ever visited for drinks after a day at the beach but have drooled over the food coming out of the kitchen. If we didn’t already have a dinner reservation we would definitely have stayed.
The 400 year old Inn is cosy and welcoming with a lovely tiered, outdoor garden area. This is another pub with deep historical connections. You’ll find an entrance to a smugglers hole behind the fireplace. I just love learning about Cornwalls’ dark past!
Kids meals are all under £6 and the menu includes all the usual favourites. Dogs are welcome and our pup was more than happy to curl up under our table while we enjoyed our cornish cider.
Read more reviews of the Old Albion Inn here.
Old Albion Inn
Although not one of the many restaurants in North Cornwall but if all else fails, grab yourself a Cornish Pasty, find a view and enjoy an impromptu picnic on your favourite coastal path. You can’t go wrong really anywhere in North Cornwall.
Whilst most restaurants in North Cornwall are pretty relaxed, right now restrictions mean it’s best to book to secure your table. Make sure you follow the restaurants rules, register your details for track and trace and wear your mask when you’re not eating. Restaurants in Cornwall tend to be fairly seasonal so make sure you check they are open before you visit.
Be sure to pin for later for planning where to eat at the best restaurants in North Cornwall.