Cornwall is home to some of the UK's most stunning landmarks. From dramatic coastal views and ancient monuments to historic castles and legendary sites associated with King Arthur, Cornwall has something for everyone.
We'll explore the top 21 Cornwall landmarks that attract tourists (& locals) every year, so whether you're a history buff, nature lover, or simply looking for a picturesque spot to snap some photos, you'll find the perfect Cornish landmark in this guide.
Cornwall has been shaped by various influences over the last few thousand years, including the Celts, the Romans, and the Vikings, and as a result, Cornwall is home to many historical and natural landmarks that offer a small glimpse into its rich past. They also play a significant role in the tourism industry attracting thousands of visitors to the area every year.
Iconic Landmarks in Cornwall
St. Michael's Mount
St. Michael's Mount is a tidal island situated in Mount's Bay, with a history that spans over 2,000 years. Since 1650, it has been the home of the St Aubyn family and is one of the most popular landmarks in Cornwall, attracting thousands of visitors annually.
The island boasts a medieval castle and a breathtaking garden, which is open to visitors during the summer months. It's essential to check the tide times before embarking on your journey, as the island is only accessible on foot during low tide. In case of high tide, boat tickets are available for purchase.
📍St Michael's Mount, Marazion, Cornwall, TR17 OHS
Opening Times: The Mount is open to visitors from April to October 9:30 am - 5 pm.
Admission: Adults £15, Child 5-17 £7.50, U5's Free. National Trust members can gain free access with membership verified on arrival.
The Eden Project
The Eden Project, located in Bodelva near St Austell, is an ecological park that features two massive biomes (a Mediterranean biome and a Rainforest biome) containing plants from around the world. It's one of the most iconic landmarks in Cornwall and a must-visit for nature lovers. You can explore the biomes and learn about the plants that live in them, take part in various organised activities (they hold special events at Easter, Halloween, and even have an ice rink at Christmas), as well as enjoy delicious food at the on-site restaurant.
They also host the 'Eden Sessions' which are a series of outdoor live music concerts held annually. The concerts take place in the summer months, and the lineups feature world-class artists from a variety of genres, including rock, pop, and folk. Previous performers have included Elton John, Lionel Richie, Kylie Minogue, Oasis, and Queens of the Stone Age. My husband and I went to see Bryan Adams last year (2022), which was a great experience, despite the mizzly weather!
📍Eden Project, Bodelva, Cornwall, PL24 2SG
Opening Times: The Eden Project is open every day of the year except for Christmas day, with varying opening times throughout the year. Visitors should check the website for up-to-date information on opening times.
Admission: Visitors can purchase tickets online in advance or at the entrance gate. Tickets are priced seasonally so check the website for up-to-date information.
Land's End is the westernmost point in Cornwall, offering breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean. It's a popular spot for taking photos next to the famous sign and watching the sunset. As you can see from the photo below, our last visit was on a wild and wet November day!
You can also explore the Land's End Visitor Centre, which has various exhibits about the history and culture of Cornwall.
📍Land’s End, Sennen, Cornwall, TR19 7AA
Opening Times: 10 am - 4 pm
Admission: All funds raised from car parking go towards preserving the designated ‘Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty’ and protecting its fragile ecosystem. Experience tickets: Adults £15, Child £10, which includes the life-sized world of Aardman, the Jolly Roger 4D film experience, and farmyard friends at the 200 year-old Cornish Farmstead – Greeb Farm.
Tintagel Castle is a medieval fortification located on the rugged coast of North Cornwall near Camelford, and according to legend, it was the birthplace of King Arthur. The castle ruins are perched on a cliff overlooking the sea, offering stunning views of the coastline. You can explore the castle and learn about its rich history, or take a walk along the nearby coastal path. The site is owned by English Heritage and tickets can be purchased via the website.
Due to the rugged coastal landscape, there are steep slopes, sheer drops, and uneven surfaces which can present a challenge to visitors.
📍Tintagel Castle, Castle Road, Tintagel, Cornwall, PL34 0HE
Opening Times: Vary, but in high season 10 am - 6 pm. The site is usually closed in adverse weather such as high winds.
Admission: Adult £18, Child £10, U5's Free
The Minack Theatre
The Minack Theatre is an open-air theatre built into the cliffs above Porthcurno beach. It's one of the most unique landmarks in Cornwall, offering a stunning setting for performances. You can attend a show at the theatre or simply explore the site during the day.
The theatre has a fascinating history dating back to the 1930s, when it was created by Rowena Cade. Visitors can explore the theatre and learn about its history at the on-site exhibition.
📍Minack Theatre, Porthcurno, Penzance, Cornwall, TR19 6JU
Opening Times: See website for details.
Admission: For theatre visits only Adult £9, U16 £4.50. Performances extra.
Tate St Ives
Art enthusiasts will love the Tate St Ives gallery, which showcases modern and contemporary art with a focus on the St Ives School. With stunning views of Porthmeor Beach, this gallery is a fantastic place to spend a wet day exploring the works of famous artists such as Barbara Hepworth and Ben Nicholson.
📍Tate St Ives, Porthmeor Beach, St Ives, Cornwall TR26 1TG
Opening Times: 10 am - 5:20 pm
Admission: Adult £10.50 Child Free
Tintagel Old Post Office
The Tintagel Old Post Office is a medieval farmhouse, modified over six centuries, and used as a letter-receiving office during the Victorian period. It's now a museum (owned by The National Trust) that showcases the history of the area and the postal service. You can explore the historic building (including the cottage garden) and learn about the daily life of the people who lived there.
📍Tintagel Old Post Office, Fore Street, Tintagel, Cornwall, PL34 0DB
Opening Times: 10:30 am - 5:30 pm April to October
Admission: Adults £6.50 Child £3.25
Pendennis Castle is a historic fortress located on a rocky headland in the town of Falmouth. It was built by King Henry VIII in the 1540s as part of his Device programme to protect against invasion from France and the Holy Roman Empire.
The castle played a vital role in defending the Carrick Roads waterway at the mouth of the River Fal, and has been used for military purposes throughout the centuries, including during the English Civil War, the Napoleonic Wars, and both World Wars. Today, Pendennis Castle is owned by English Heritage and is open to the public as a popular tourist attraction.
📍 Pendennis Castle, Falmouth, Cornwall, TR11 4LP
Opening Times: 10 am - 5 pm
Admission: Adult £12.70 Child 7.70 (Free for English Heritage members)
Geevor Tin Mine
Step back in time at the Geevor Tin Mine near Penzance, a UNESCO World Heritage site. This historic mine offers guided underground tours, an interactive museum, and the opportunity to try your hand at panning for gold. Children will love the hands-on experiences, while the whole family will be fascinated by the history of Cornwall's tin mining industry.
📍Geevor Tin Mine, Pendeen, Penzance, Cornwall, TR19 7EW
Opening Times: Sunday - Friday 9 am - 5 pm
Admission: Adult £17.70 Child 9.90
Delve into Cornwall's dark past with a visit to Bodmin Jail. This historic prison, now a museum, offers guided tours of its eerie cells and the chance to learn about its infamous inmates. With a ghostly atmosphere and fascinating exhibits, it's an intriguing experience for older children and adults alike.
📍Bodmin Jail, Berrycoombe Road, Bodmin, Cornwall PL31 2NR (Sat Nav PL31 2PY).
Opening Times: 9:30 am - 6:30 pm or 8:30 pm depending on the day
Admission: Adult £15 Child £12.50
Truro Cathedral, located in the heart of the city centre, is a beautiful cathedral that dates back to the 19th century. It offers guided tours and regular services, and visitors can explore the stunning stained glass windows and impressive architecture.
📍Truro Cathedral, Cathedral Close, Truro, TR1 2FQ
Opening Times: Monday - Saturday 10 am - 5 pm (Sunday 11:30 am - 4 pm
The Lost Gardens of Heligan
The Lost Gardens of Heligan are a beautiful set of gardens located near St Austell. Lost to brambles since the outbreak of WW1, this sleeping beauty was re-awakened in 1990 to become Europe’s largest garden restoration project. Today Heligan’s 200 acres are a paradise for the wildlife lover, plant lover, and garden romantic. On your visit, you can explore the various gardens, including a jungle, a Victorian garden, and a vegetable garden. The site also features a farm, restaurant, and gift shop.
📍The Lost Gardens of Heligan, Pentewan, St.Austell, Cornwall, PL26 6EN
Opening Times: 10 am - 6 pm
Admission: Adult £22.50 Child £9.50
Lizard Point is the southernmost point in mainland Britain, offering stunning views of the coast and the sea. You can take a walk along the coastal path, visit the lighthouse, or explore the nearby beaches.
📍Lighthouse Rd, Lizard, Helston TR12 7NT
Kynance Cove is a picturesque cove located on the Lizard Peninsula. It features turquoise waters, white sand, and dramatic cliffs. You can take a walk along the coastal path, swim in the sea, or enjoy a picnic on the beach.
📍Kynance Cove, TR12 7PJ.
Bodmin Moor is a vast and wild landscape that is home to ancient stone circles and other historical landmarks. It's an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty that covers over 80 square miles and is perfect for hiking, cycling, and horse riding. The moor has inspired many writers and artists over the centuries and continues to be a popular destination for nature lovers. It's home to the two highest peaks in Cornwall, Roughtor and Brown Willy.
Roughtor is one of our favourite dog walking spots and is a great way to escape the crowds in the summer months. You can easily walk up to the summit and back down again in about an hour!
The Cheesewring is a unique rock formation located on Bodmin Moor, near the village of Minions. It's a granite tor that gets its name from a traditional gadget used for squeezing the liquid out of cheese. The site has a rich history dating back to prehistoric times, and is associated with many local legends and folklore. There are several walking routes that lead to the site.
St. Nectan's Glen
St. Nectan's Glen is a beautiful site near Tintagel, featuring a waterfall, wooded valley, and interesting rock formations. You can take a walk through the glen, enjoy the peaceful surroundings (although it does get busy in high season!), and get a bite to eat at the Tree of Life Cafe.
📍St Nectans Glen, Trethevy, Tintagel, PL34 0BE
Opening Times: 10 am - 5 pm
Admission: Adult £8 Child £4
Golitha Falls, near Liskeard, is a set of waterfalls and rapids in the heart of Bodmin Moor. It's a hidden gem that's popular among locals but less known to tourists. You can take a walk along the river and enjoy the stunning scenery. We often take a picnic with us, but there's also a nice cafe situated in the car park.
📍 Golitha Falls, Liskeard, PL14 6RX
Godrevy Lighthouse, on Godrevy Island near Hayle, is a striking landmark that offers stunning views of the sea. The lighthouse was built in 1859 to mark a dangerous reef and it has become an iconic symbol of Cornwall's maritime history ever since. Visitors can enjoy coastal walks and take in the beautiful scenery from the coast path.
📍Godrevy Lighthouse, TR27 5ED
Nestled within acres of lush tropical gardens, Newquay Zoo is a great place for a family day trip. Located in the heart of Trenance Gardens and Trenance Leisure Park, this zoo is home to a vast array of exotic animals, with one of its most popular residents being the lovable red panda.
📍 Newquay Zoo, Trenance Gardens, Newquay TR7 2NL
Opening Times: Daily 10 am - 5 pm (last admission 4 pm)
Admission: £16.35 Child £12.30 (if purchased online)
Flambards is one of the most popular and iconic tourist attractions in Cornwall, and for good reason. This fun park boasts over 20 rides and attractions, including the Hornet Rollercoaster (I last went on this 30 years ago when I was a 10-year-old girl visiting with my Brownie pack), as well as SkyRaker, the twisting drop ride. There's also a log flume, go-karts, and a traditional Sky Swinger ride.
📍Flambards, Clodgey Lane, Helston, Cornwall TR13 0QA
Opening Times: 10 am - 5 pm. Check their calendar to find out what's open on the day you want to visit.
Admission: £21.95 Child £16.95
Located near Wadebridge, Camel Creek Adventure Park (built on the site of the old Shire Horse Centre), is a large theme park that offers an array of different rides and attractions to suit visitors of all ages.
The park's main attraction is its collection of exciting rides, which includes Air Bender, its largest family coaster, the Raging Rivers log flume, and the Morgawr roller coaster.
📍Camel Creek, Tredinnick, Wadebridge Cornwall PL27 7RA
Opening Times: Change throughout the year - check the website for up-to-date information.
Admission: Check the website.
Frequently Asked Questions
The most popular landmark in Cornwall is undoubtedly St Michael's Mount. This is a tidal island located in Mount's Bay that is home to a medieval castle and stunning gardens.
The Minack Theatre was first created in the 1930s by Rowena Cade, who built the theatre by hand with the help of her gardener. The theatre has since been expanded and modernised but still maintains its original charm.
The Eden Project was created in 2001 by Tim Smit, who wanted to create a space that showcased the world's diverse plant life. The project features two massive biomes that house plants from around the world, as well as outdoor gardens and educational exhibits.
The myth of the lost city of Lyonesse is a legend that claims there was once a city on the coast of Cornwall that was lost to the sea. It's said to have been the home of King Arthur's queen, Guinevere.
Tintagel Castle is believed to have been built in the 13th century, although there is evidence of earlier occupation on the site dating back to the Roman period. The castle was partially destroyed in the 14th century and was abandoned by the 16th century. The ruins of the castle are now managed by English Heritage and are a popular tourist attraction.
Cornish Landmarks: A Recap
Cornwall's landmarks offer a fascinating glimpse into the county's rich history and natural beauty. From ancient standing stones and Bronze Age monuments to medieval castles and stunning coastal vistas, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Whether you're interested in hiking and walking, exploring historical sites, or simply taking in the breathtaking scenery, Cornwall's landmarks will certainly inspire you!
You might also like
Don't forget to subscribe to the newsletter to stay up to date with what's happening in Cornwall!