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Surfing in Sennen – Tips and Hints

Say you are going to Sennen Cove to anyone and they will assume you are going surfing! Sennen is synonymous with surf and the surf culture, and there are two brilliant surf schools situated right on the beach for those who want to give the sport a go. Visit their websites at or for up to date information and some great pictures of the instructors – for those who are nervous about their first time in the waves it is reassuring to put a face to the person who will help you! Both surf schools are staffed by friendly instructors who are passionate about surfing and the waves – adults and children alike will love their learning experience.

Surfing at Sennen beach in Cornwall

For those who have surfed before and have their own boards, Sennen has something to offer all levels and abilities. Check conditions carefully before you go – and don’t under-estimate local knowledge; if there is no one in the water there is probably a reason why. If you want to check before you travel, you can view the Sennen harbour webcam which will give you some indication of the state of the surf. The beach is patrolled by RNLI lifeguards at Easter and then from May until the end of September, and they will use black and white flags to show the surfing area. Red flags mean that the water is far too dangerous for bathing or surfing, and this advice should be followed – the RNLI trains its lifeguards well! The water quality is good, and surf can be found throughout the year without the huge crowds at other West Cornwall beaches, although conditions may become busy in high season. For more info on Sennen, read our blog post Introducing…Sennen.

Parking in winter is plentiful, with a pay and display car park ideally placed by the Beach Restaurant, and another at the other end of the beach by Sennen Harbour. In summer parking is at a premium, so you may have to park at the overflow car park at the top of the hill and walk down – a good warm up before you hit the waves, but more of a challenge after your surf! For the best waves try and time your visit to an incoming tide, but Sennen is popular because it regularly provides a wave. Read our blog post on Sandy Beaches in West Cornwall which features Sennen beach.

There are plenty of places to eat and drink after your surf during high season, with the Beach Restaurant providing delicious fresh meals and a fabulous view of the waves you have just tamed. The Old Success Pub is open throughout the year, and can provide accommodation as well as refreshment. Little Bo café is open all year  – with superb cake and amazing views over the bay – pop in for a warm-through when the water temperature is chilly. Check out our blog post on Our favourite places to have lunch in Sennen for ideas on where to eat out.



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