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We recently returned from what was a pleasant week in Polzeath- but it's changed since I was last there in 1992! What hasn't changed are the beautiful coastal walks (take the coastal path to Port Quinn, it'll take your breath away!), the stunning beach, the local conveniences, the strong surf culture and the friendly locals. Nearby are Rock and Padstow (or Padstein as some call it owning to the fact that Rick Stein owns half of it), towns which both now apparently attract well healed holiday makers. Naturally there is some overspill in Polzeath. It's not so much the yuppies I object to, more the yuppie-spawn, some of whom are legally old enough to drink. You will find swarms of teenagers having a good time on Daddy's American Express, and more annoyingly, teenagers having a good time in Daddy's convertible beamer (annoying when you are innocently walking down a very narrow one way lane and nearly get your legs taken off). You will also find groups of vulgar 40 something Yummy Mummy Investment Banking Range Roving types and their babies/ toddlers, and I recommend you avoid at all costs having to sit next to these people in a resturant/on the beach/anywhere, as they will make it quite clear that their little Tilly is in fact the center of the entire universe despite what you may think. If you fall into this category of people, or aspire to, Polzeath and surrounding areas may be for you. If, like us, you're unfortunate enough to live on under £50k a year, do not depair. The Seaview bar/resturant is quite expensive, but they do pizza's for under a tenner on the front terrace. We booked a table without seeing the menu, and I had my suspicions it would be expensive when Harry Enfield turned up, but we had a fantastic three course dinner for two plus a nice bottle of wine for £70. The waiter informed us the Hugh Grant and Kate Moss had been earlier in the week. The Atlantic in has a good menu and the beer is average in price, and the Oystercatcher also has a reasonable food menu (although I feel they may have missed a trick with this pub). I would certainly go back, but if you've never been, beware you may feel inadequate in your Vauxhall Vectra!
I have just spent a week in Cornwall and had the pleasure to spend some time in Polzeath.
Polzeath is a small town in North Cornwall on the coast which has a fantastic beach. It is one of the few beaches in Cornwall where you can drive directly to the beach. In fact there is even a car park on the beach! Don't let this fact put you off because it does not feel like you are sitting in a car park.
The beach at Polzeath is extremely flat which means that depending on what time you arrive will depend on how big the beach is as the tide comes in extremely quickly. We arrived at about 5:30pm and there was loads of beach. By 7pm it was tiny.
Polzeath beach is very busy and you will find that it is very popular with the surfers. There is even a small surf tutorial centre on the beach. There is also a life guard around on the beach during the day so it is a safe and sensible option when deciding to swim in the sea.
The small town of Polzeath is built on the side of cliffs and so it is quite a steep walk around. There are a few small shops and a fish and chip shop within walking distance from the beach.
Overall I would definitely suggest taking a visit to Polzeath, especially if you like the beach!
We have recently returned from a week's holiday in Polzeath in Cornwall. Unfortunately for us, even though it was August, it did rain heavily every day but I'll try not to let that colour my judgement!
Polzeath is on the North Cornish coast and is fairly close to Wadebridge and about twenty miles from Newquay. The centre of Polzeath is not vey big at all and is situated on a small headland. It's just over an hour's drive from Exeter which is very easily accessible from the M5.
When you first drive into Polzeath from either direction you come down a steep hill and what will strike you above all else is the extremely busy beach whatever the weather! The beach at Polzeath really is a surfer's paradise and the whole beach is filled with surfers or body boarders. This is all very well if that is what you are in to, but if you are looking for the sort of beach for children to play happily with buckets and spades there are probably others that are more suitable. We found this with our girls although there is a small stream running onto the beach and that is quite good for children to play and dig in the sand.
Being a surfer's beach most of the shops and kiosks are geared up to selling and hiring wetsuits and these seemed to be quite reasonable rates for hiring although better if you wanted one for the whole week. The waves are really quite incredibly which really does make it excellent for surfers, but as a parent of fairly young children the waves did make me feel slightly nervous. That with the sheer numbers of surfers on the beach meant I felt the need to watch the girls very closely and this did not make it a very relaxing experience for me at all. However, if you have the energy to walk just around the headland there is a much more secluded beach there. Also, the waves are magnificent to watch and it really is a beautiful place. There is also a nature reserve and apparently sometimes you can see dolphins from the beach - I suspect at less busy times you are likely to be more successful with spotting the wildlife! It's also worth noting that the beach is constantly manned by lifeguards (during the high season) although luckily when we were there we did not see them have to rescue anyone.
Aprt from the beach there is not a great deal of other attractions in Polzeath but as it's not far from Wadebridge you can visit places like the Cornish Birds of Prey Centre, Crealey Adventure Park and it's only about fifty minutes drive from the Eden Project. Basically it's not too far from any of the major Cornish attractions.
If you are looking to eat out in Polzeath you are quite likely to be disappointed as there is not much choice and they more seem to go for the fast food and chips variety of catering. A lot of the accomodation in Polzeath is camping or caravan sites. We stayed at the Valley Caravan Park which is ideally situated in the centre of Polzeath and one of the few places where you do not have to walk up a steep hill to get too. There are also a couple of Supermarkets - a Spar and a discount supermarket - neither of which seemed that cheap. However Wadebridge is only a few miles away and there you will find both a Lidl and a Co-op and these are probably better places to stock up at if you are self catering.
I think that Polzeath is an excellent place to go to if you are into surfing. If, like us though, you are not, you are probably best to look for a different type of coastal resprt which provides more of a family beach. Also, as it is quite a small centre, the options when it is raining are limited. The centre does also tend to feel quite claustophobic with tons of people milling about.
Apparently Polzeath was one of Sir John Betjeman's favourite places - interesting then that he chose to write about Slough and not Polzeath!
I did like Polzeath but I don't think I would stay there again unless I really wanted a serious surfing holiday. However, after our very wet rainy experience we are more than likely to go abroad next time!