Porthtowan is a sandy beach flanked by steep cliffs on West Cornwall's north coast within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. This is a popular beach for surfers and families alike. Porthtowan is within the St Agnes AONB.Tweet
There is car parking for 137 cars - there is a seasonal charge. There are also 4 disabled spaces.
Seasonal ban in place betwteen Easter day to 1st October.
Beach manually cleaned daily during the summer by the council.
Swimming, fishing, canoeing and surfing are all popular. Board hire is available and there is zoning for water sports.
The South West Coast Path along the top of the cliffs north towards Chapel Porth makes a wonderful scenic walk. Beware the tide comes in quickly at Chapel Porth covering this stretch of coast completely. See Marine Wildlife sightings at this beach
Beach type: sand,
Currently showing any beaches within a 10 miles radius of Porthtowan beach
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Water samples are taken at this designated bathing water by the Environment Agency, during the bathing season, from 15th May to 30th September. Find out more about designated bathing waters.
High levels of bacteria in the water can indicate pollution from sewage treatment works or polluted rain water draining from the land. Where does pollution comes from and how can you help?
Water quality can be reduced for up to 72 hours after heavy rain. Look out for temporary signs at the beach and on our website.
At the end of every bathing season the water quality is classified as either-
Excellent – the highest classification meaning the water is cleanest
Good – generally good water quality
Sufficient – meets minimum standards
Poor – You are advised not to swim. The beach will stay open and an action plan should be in place to improve the water quality.
Daily water quality forecasts are made at some designated bathing waters during the bathing season which is May to September in England and Wales and June to September in Scotland and Northern Ireland. Water quality isn’t monitored outside of this time and daily pollution forecasts are not made – check back here during the bathing season for the latest forecasts.
Our volunteers have been surveying rubbish on UK beaches for over 20 years. In that time shoreline litter had more than doubled and plastic has gone up by 180%!
MCS beach cleans are run all year round with our flagship event 'Great British Beach Clean' in September.
Volunteers record the litter they find - we use this information to help Governments and industry understand how to stop the rubbish getting there in the first place. We also promote behaviour change among the public using the data collected.
Within 10 miles of Porthtowan beach
Take your rubbish home - don’t try and cram more stuff into already overflowing beach bins
Don’t leave litter behind - take it away and recycle it
Only put the 3P's down the loo - Pee, Poo and Paper - everything else goes in the bin!
Find an eatery with a Fish2fork sustainable seafood rating within 10 miles of Porthtowan beach
We rate restaurants according to the impact the seafood they serve has on fish stocks and the health of our oceans.
Along with MCS we want all seafood served in the UK to be sustainable.
Visit Fish2fork website
Blue fish - serving sustainable seafood
Red fish – one or more fish options on the menu is an MCS Fish to Avoid
You never know what kinds of wildife you'll come
across at the beach. We're interested in what you find - especially
if you come across jellyfish, basking sharks or turtles. Tell
us what you find.
Note: This page shows reports of sightings of jellyfish, basking sharks and turtles ONLY, as MCS holds national databases for these species. Don't be alarmed if it looks like there are lots of jellyfish in the area, they are fascinating creatures. We always advise "look but don't touch".
Within 10 miles of Porthtowan beach
No sightings have been reported in the area. Please report your sightings if you see a jellyfish, marine turtle or basking shark.