Al fresco dining in Cornwall: 9 of the best places to go

Al fresco dining by the sea. Cornwall has plenty of beachside dining options

Nothing beats a spot of al fresco dining by the sea in Cornwall - Credit: Shalev Cohen / Unsplash

Soak in some of Cornwall’s prettiest views, from sunsets over the beach to watching the streets quieten down in Truro.

We pick 9 of the best places to dine al fresco in Cornwall where you can experience first hand the natural beauty of this county…

The Cornish Vegan, Truro 

15 Kenwyn St, Truro TR1 3BU

Whilst visiting the vibrant city of Truro, why not drop by The Cornish Vegan, a contemporary café? For lunch, catch up with a friend and tuck into the lentil, mushroom and walnut burger served on Baker Tom’s ciabatta roll alongside a glass of fresh juice.

Fancy something sweet? We recommend that you try the vegan cream teas with coconut cream, and even bring your pooch along and enjoy the outdoor seating area surrounded by beautiful flora.

Hooked! Restaurant & Bar, Truro 

Tabernacle St, Truro TR1 2EJ

Home to some of the tastiest seafood derived from Cornish waters, Hooked! is a modern diner with exquisite food, trendy décor and a laidback atmosphere. After a day’s hard work trawling the bustling streets of Truro, this seafood eatery is the perfect place to grab a fishy bite to eat whilst dining on the balcony overlooking the city.

If you're planning on heading to the theatre, take advantage of the pre-theatre set menu. Enjoy a delicious three-course meal and still be out in time to see your favourite plat or musical at the Hall for Cornwall, and better still, if you show your theatre ticket you can enjoy a discount on your bill at the end!

The Fish House, Fistral 

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Headland Rd, Newquay TR7 1EW

Situated on the scenic Fistral Beach is The Fish House, a seafood restaurant in Newquay. Enjoy locally caught fish and shellfish - for starters, why not tuck into the Panko fried tiger prawns with an Asian salad and wasabi mayonnaise.

For the main course, we recommend that you try the scrumptious seafood linguine. Treat yourself to pudding with the chocolate brownie topped with chocolate sauce and clotted cream; don’t forget to order that bottle of wine too, all to be enjoyed on the terrace!

The Harbour Fish and Grill, Newquay 

N Quay Hill, Newquay TR7 1HF

The Harbour Fish and Grill is a beautiful cliff-side restaurant boasting stunning views across Newquay harbour. To match the spectacular views, there is an exquisite seafood menu – award-winning chef Aaron Janes deliver tasty dishes, all using fish caught that day wherever possible.

If you’re lucky enough to grab a seat on the balcony, you can watch the boats sail by whilst savouring succulent scallops, Cornish crab and many other seafood favourites – all are cooked to perfection. Gaze over the panoramic views from this clifftop location and admire the seven beaches below.

The Cove Restaurant, Maenporth 

Maenporth, Beach, Falmouth TR11 5HN

Tucked away in a Cornish cove (hence its name!), Cove restaurant has breathtaking views of the white sands of Maenporth beach and the turquoise seas of Falmouth bay. Escape the hustle and bustle of Falmouth town centre and while away an afternoon at the restaurant with great company, fantastic seafood and good wine.

In the evening, you can observe the golden sunset whilst you indulge in a fishy treat such as the crab chowder or Fal Bay Seafood Feast from the à la carte menu.

Bank at Bude 

Pethericks Mill, Bude EX23 8TF

Let your taste buds run free at The Bank located in Bude, offering scenic views out over the River Neet. From paellas to fish platters and seafood, The Bank have a menu brimming with delicious tapas choices!

Don’t let chillier evenings put you off from venturing out on to the terrace to take full advantage of the stunning views because blankets are provided to ensure everyone is kept nice and toasty!

Rock Pool Café, Mousehole 

The Parade, Mousehole, Penzance TR19 6PT

Whether it’s a crab sandwich you want or a Cornish cream tea (jam then cream, of course) then head to the Rock Pool in Mousehole, where you can soak in the sun surrounded by glorious views of the Cornish coast.

Bring your pooch along for a relaxing evening of indulging in great food and drinks whilst watching the sunset from the garden.

Sam’s on the Beach, Polkerris 

14, Polkerris, Par PL24 2TL

In a building that was once a boathouse, this bistro boasts a spectacular location on the beachfront. Head to the terrace and admire the picture-perfect sunset and tuck into a delicious cheese and onion pizza made from their wood fire oven.

Alternatively, try their delicious seafood spaghetti marinara. Soothe your sweet tooth with some profiteroles topped with chocolate sauce and a glass of Pinot Grigio to finish! Sam’s Diner is also rapidly expanding, with venues in Truro and Fowey to also pay a visit to.

The Hub, St Ives 

4 Wharf Rd, Saint Ives TR26 1LF

After a day of exploring St Ives, stop by Hub, an American-inspired diner found in the heart of the town and located in Truro and St Austell. Taste one of their award-winning burgers and wash it down with a Mocha Martini, Bloody Mary, or perhaps opt for one of their craft beers.

Watch the boats as they pull into the harbour or wait until evening to watch the sunset over the coast from the balcony.

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