Cheap Days Out in Cornwall | 12 of the Best Places To Go!

Cheap Days Out in Cornwall | 12 of the Best Places To Go!

Are you yearning for a cheap but exciting holiday? If so, Cornwall is the place for you! From magical sunsets over the Atlantic Ocean to rocky cliffs reaching out of lush green pastures, Cornwall provides an unforgettable experience – and best of all you don’t have to break the bank. There are plenty of free things to do in this stunning part of England – why not come and explore this little corner of paradise and make some priceless memories along the way?

In this blog post we list:

  • The best places to visit for no charge at all
  • Show all places on an interactive map to help you locate each place easily.

The beautiful county of Cornwall has many options for places to visit for free today. You could learn about the ways of Cornish living at the Museum of Cornish Life, go back in maritime history at the Charlestown Harbour or take a walk on the stunning Perranporth Beach. Click on each name to be taken straight to the blog post for that place.

Free things to do
    Add a header to begin generating the table of contents

    Updated and correct as of 09/11/23.

    • Quick Heading Links

    Museums and Galleries

    free things to do in cornwall

    St Agnes Museum

    St Agnes Museum is a must-see for anyone making the journey to the south-west county. Located in the old Chapel of Rest church surrounded by its graveyard, the museum pays homage to the history of tin and copper mining and pilchard fishing, two industries that were once integral to life in coastal towns like St Agnes. Visitors can follow a self-guided tour through interactive displays showing well-preserved artifacts from centuries gone by and can arrange guided tours by the museum's excellent volunteers by arrangement.

    Museum of Cornish life Helston

    Originally established in 1949 as a small folk museum showcasing everyday life, the Museum of Cornish Life has since grown into an expansive treasure trove of artifacts, records, and artwork depicting the fascinating and varied history of Cornwall. From Stone Age tools to Iron-Age domestic objects, medieval and nineteenth-century Cornish crafts, with a host of original manuscripts along the way - this museum has something for everyone. There's no better place to get up close and personal with the resilient lives lived by those from this rich coastal region.

    Falmouth Art Gallery

    Since its founding in 1978, the Falmouth Art Gallery has housed an impressive selection of artwork from local and international artists alike. The spectacular gallery offers something to everyone; from early modernist pieces to works from contemporary British painters, excellent photography, and classic oil paintings. The beauty of this gallery is presented in over 2,000 pieces of artwork with plenty to keep you occupied for an afternoon, taking in the artistic culture of the area! There's also a shop to pick up souvenirs on your way out. The Brooks Collectables and Toy Museum is a must-see for any toy enthusiasts visiting the prominent seaside town. The museum was established as a family business over 70 years ago and has two levels of vintage toys you may remember from your youth. From Star Wars figures to Corgi vehicles, the museum has amassed a wide-ranging collection.

    The Jackson Foundation

    Located in an ex-industrial building in the town of St Just-in-Penwith, The Jackson Foundation is a new environmentally friendly gallery that has quickly become one of the most highly rated art spaces in the county. Created by Kurt and Caroline Jackson, the gallery showcases the work of Kurt himself with his British Contemporary pieces on display. With its award-winning carbon-negative building and beautiful artwork on hand, the gallery is worth a stop by to appreciate the works of a leading artist in his field.

    Free things to do in Cornwall FAQ's

    Cornwall due to its popularity can be quite expensive. To save on costs you should take advantage of public transportation options and plan your trip during off-peak seasons to save on costs, book accommodation in advance and look for deals and discounts and research free or low-cost activities in the area.

    If it's raining in Cornwall, there is still plenty of things to do. You could check out the local art galleries like the Falmouth Art Gallery and the Jackson Foundation Gallery or learn about Cornish history and culture at the Castle Bude or the Museum of Cornish Life Helston.

    History and Culture

    Cheap Days Out in Cornwall

    St Just in Roseland Church

    Becoming part of the local landscape since the 13th century, the St Just in Roseland Church is a sight to behold. The church's setting couldn't be more remarkable either - located on a serene creek estuary surrounded by lush gardens and the natural beauty of the local area. It is no wonder why the church looks unlike any other in Cornwall and in the entire country, which is mainly the reason thousands of tourists flock here each year. On any trip to this beautiful county, visitors should make sure they visit St Just in Roseland Church; it truly stands as a testament to centuries of love and devotion towards divine spirituality!

    The Castle Bude

    The Castle Bude has a unique and vibrant history! Built-in 1830 by Sir Goldsworthy Gurney, the castle has been used by the local council, the magistrate's court, and the local library over the years. Nowadays, it stands tall with its stone walls looming over the beach below, and since 2007 it has been used as a heritage centre showcasing Sir Gurney's achievements and other local exhibits and stories from the Bude area.

    Truro Cathedral

    Truro Cathedral stands as a reminder of the illustrious past of the British Isles. Construction started in the 19th century and after 30 years of construction, the Gothic Revival-style building has often been lauded as one of England’s best examples of architecture from this period. With soaring stone pillars and stained glass windows, the cathedral offers visitors a chance to explore history within its hallowed halls.

    Charlestown Harbour

    Nestled in the far northeast of Cornwall lies Charlestown Harbour, a historic and picturesque port surrounded by stunning landscapes. This small harbour town has been a bustling centre of trade since at least the 18th century - records show that it was used as a location to land cargo from across Europe. Today, its cobbled streets, quaint cottages, and a landmark Grade II listed pier are reminders of this port’s rich past. Whilst time has passed, Charlestown has kept many of its traditional traits – the purpose-built tall vessels which can still be seen here today were created for worldwide trade purposes and remain integral to the character of the harbour.

    Walks and Nature Trails


    The Lizard and Kynance Cove

    If you're looking for a stunningly beautiful and historically significant place to explore on your next trip to the county, look no further than The Lizard and Kynance Cove! This unique and beloved area is steeped in history and breathtaking views. In addition to its sheer beauty and incredible geology, the area is surrounded by gorgeous golden sandy beaches that are perfect for sunbathing or taking a leisurely seaside stroll in one of the most photographed and painted places in all of Cornwall! Owned and maintained by the National Trust, Kynance Cove is one of the most visited natural areas on the south coast.

    Looe to Polperro Walk

    The Looe to Polperro walk is a beautiful and popular scenic route that has been used by visitors and travelers alike for centuries. The 5.7-mile walk takes you past rolling cliffs, along peaceful paths, and beside the sea - providing some truly remarkable views. The path takes you past the ruins of a medieval chapel giving a taste of the history of the area and you might get the chance to spot some grey seals and a variety of birdlife on your journey, so keep your eyes peeled for some of nature's best on display.

    Perranporth Beach

    If you're thinking of visiting Cornwall for your next trip, a must-see destination is Perranporth Beach. The dunes of Perranporth are classed as a Special Area of Conservation and are also home to a church buried beneath the sand! There are caves and rockpools to explore along with a small bathing pool for a quick dip in the hot summer months. No matter what time of year you visit, there's something special about the unparalleled natural wonder that makes it a perfect spot for everyone looking to experience something truly unique.

    Wheal Coates Tin Mine

    Located near St Agnes, the former tin mine has been a part of Cornwall's history for centuries now. Overlooking Chapel Porth Beach along the Heritage Coastline, this site features stunning coastal views, with evidence pointing to it having been worked since at least the early 19th century. With its spectacular settings and diverse history intertwined with that of Cornwall itself, exploring the area that was once considered a busy area of processing and extraction of minerals makes for an interesting way to spend an afternoon. The short walk of just over 1 mile is worth it to take in the views and sample some of the county's industrial history.


    Use the map below to locate all the best things to do in Cornwall mentioned above to create your itinerary for your trip.

    Open Google Maps to see distance information between locations and directions on how to get to each place.

    Please note...

    All outdoor activities including walking involve a degree of risk. The walks are recommended due to the features of each forest but this may change over time and further research is required before undertaking any activity. The weather can also impact the surface and general conditions of each path so please keep yourself updated with the weather forecast before setting off to enjoy your walk!

    Other Blog Posts From Cornwall

    We write lots of blog posts from each area of free activities to do. Have a look at our blog posts from the county of Cornwall by clicking the links below:


    Cornwall Blogs


    Cycling Routes in Cornwall


    Woodland Walks in Cornwall


    Local Delicacies from Cornwall

    • Back to Home

    • Back to Cornwall Blogs