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Exploring Cornwall's attractions: the 20 best things around Liskeard in 2024

A low tide leaves the rocks exposed in the glistening sand at Sharrow Beach on the south coast of Cornwall
There’s no shortage of amazing places to visit not far from Haye Cornwall. Being in the heart of Cornwall we’re close to beaches and historic sights further inland. 
There are a large number of beautiful and secluded local beaches within 30 minutes of here to soak up the sun and surf. Then there’s the rugged beauty of Bodmin Moor, the mysterious and ancient stone circles of The Hurlers and The Pipers, not to mention the Old Engine Houses dotted all over the area, relics of tin and gold mining eras. Visit King Doniert’s Stone, and immerse yourself in the natural wonders of nearby Golitha Falls and Carnglaze Caverns.
Whether you’re a nature lover, a history buff, or simply seeking a peaceful break, the hidden gems around Liskeard offer something special.

So, here's our Top 20 things to do, and how long it will take you to get there:

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    1) Bodmin Moor (25 minutes drive)

    An abandoned old mine on Bodmin Moor Cornwall with cloudy skies
    Lone tree on the wilds of Bodmin Moor, Cornwall

    We love Bodmin Moor – its rugged beauty and ancient history is captivating and mystical. Stretching over 80 square miles, Bodmin Moor is home to sweeping moorlands, granite tors, and picturesque streams. Explore its unique flora and fauna, including rare bird species, wild ponies and other animals that roam on the moor. 

    There are also numerous archaeological sites, such as the famous Hurlers stone circles and King Doniert’s Stone, monument to Cornwall’s last King. Whether you’re a nature lover, history enthusiast, or just looking for a bit of peace and quiet, Bodmin Moor is an unforgettably wild part of Cornwall.

    2) The Hurlers Stone Circles and The Pipers (22 mins)

    The Hurlers ancient standing stones on Bodmin Moor in Cormwall
    The Hurlers ancient stone circle in Bodmin Moor against a moody grey sky

    If you’ve never heard of The Hurlers, you’re in for a treat. The Hurlers and The Pipers are ancient stone circles located on Bodmin Moor. These mysterious and captivating structures date back to the Bronze Age and are believed to have been used for ceremonial purposes.

    The Hurlers consists of three stone circles arranged in a line, while The Pipers is a smaller circle nearby. Legend has it that the stones are the remains of local men who were caught playing the game of hurling on the Sabbath and were turned into stone as punishment.

    You can explore the site by a short walk from the car park located at the village of Minions.

    3) Old Engine Houses (20 mins)

    Blue skies with whispy clouds above an old abandoned mine on Bodim Moor in Cornwall with Yellow Gorse flowers in the foreground - South Phoenix Mine
    Abandoned Tin Mine on Bodmin Moor at night with the Milky Way in the background - Taken by UK Photo Tours staying at Haye Cornwall Vegan Holiday Accommodation

    The picturesque Old Engine Houses stand as a reminder of Cornwall’s rich mining history, with their weathered exteriors telling tales of a bygone era. These striking structures sit in the rugged beauty of Bodmin Moor, evoking a sense of mystery and nostalgia.

    The remnants of the decaying structures paint a vivid picture of the labour and innovation that characterized the mining industry in Cornwall centuries ago. There are many scattered about Bodmin Moor, with the South Phoenix Mine easily accessible by parking at The Cheesewring car park in the village of Minions.

    4) Wild Ponies and Other Animals (20 mins)

    Bodmin Moor Pony looks at the camera - black and white photo - Taken by UK Photo Tours staying at Haye Cornwall Vegan Holiday Accommodation
    Cow on Bodmin Moor in Cornwall scratching an itch on Hurlers Ancient Stone Circle

    We love animals so of course we had to include animals on our list. One of the best and most famous sights in these parts are the wild ponies that roam freely across the moors.  Actually, they are nominally owned, but for 364 days a year they are free to do as they want. For one day a year, they are rounded up, counted and then (in the main) set free again. These majestic creatures embody the spirit of the untamed wilderness. Just don’t get up too close – they are easily startled. And if you want to get close to one, our very own Grace and May may be in the mood for a cuddle!

    In addition to the ponies,  buzzards soar everywhere in the skies of Cornwall, including over Haye Cornwall, and sheep or cattle wander across roads, so please watch your driving. 

    Red Breasted Robin in the grass near Liskeard Cornwall
    Two Bodmin Moor Ponies caressing - black and white photo - Taken by UK Photo Tours staying at Haye Cornwall Vegan Holiday Accommodation

    5) The Cheesewring (20 mins + 25 mins walk)

    The Cheesewring, Stowes Hill, on Bodmin Moor Cornwall

    The Cheesewring, on Stowes Hill near Liskeard, is a unique rock formation that has captivated visitors for centuries. This natural wonder consists of a stack of granite slabs that appear to be delicately balanced on top of each other, resembling a giant cheese press. Its unusual formation is the result of weathering and erosion over millions of years. Standing approximately 12 feet high, the Cheesewring is an impressive sight and has become an iconic landmark in Cornwall.

    Marvel at the intricate layers of granite and stand on top of the rocks to enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding moorland.

    6) King Doniert’s Stone (20 mins)

    A cloudy sky and daffodils surround King Doniert's Stone in Liskeard Cornwall

    King Doniert’s Stone is a memorial to King Doniert, the last ruler of Cornwall before it became part of England. The stone and its carvings, believed to date to the 9th century, bears an inscription honouring the king and his demise. 

    7) Trevethy Quoit (18 mins)

    Trevethy Quoit Neolithic Dolmen near Liskeard Cornwall - low angle with moody grey sky

    Trevethy Quoit is an ancient megalithic monument. A dolmen, it dates back to the Neolithic period, and consists of large granite stones delicately balanced to form a chambered tomb. It is thought to have been used for burial rituals thousands of years ago. Trevethy Quoit is about 15 feet high and consists of a large capstone resting on three supporting stones. 

    8) Golitha Falls (21 mins + 10 mins walk)

    Long exposure of the flowing water of Golitha Falls in Bodmin Moor Cornwall

    Golitha Falls is a stunning natural attraction within the enchanting woodland of Bodmin Moor. We walk there often with Harvey and can’t get enough of the never-ending series of waterfalls as the River Fowey cascades over granite boulders. Find yourself a nice rock on the edge of the river, sit or crouch and just let the sight and sound wash over you. 

    There are well-marked trails that wind through the forest. The area is also home to a diverse range of plant and animal species, making it a haven for nature enthusiasts. Don’t forget to bring your camera to this one!

    9) Carnglaze Caverns (23 mins)

    Carnglaze Caverns are ancient slate quarries that have been transformed into a magical underground world, where you can explore the stunning caverns and delve into the depths of Cornwall’s mining history. The highlight of the caverns is the underground lake, with its crystal-clear waters reflecting the natural formations above.

    Guided tours describe the dark and mysterious tunnels, and informative displays provide insight into the mining industry and the geology of the area. Genuinely a hidden treasure….

    10) Cotehele - National Trust (23 mins)

    Cotehele, managed by the National Trust, is a fabulous historic estate with a picturesque Tudor house and gardens.  Explore the beautifully-kep grounds, filled with vibrant flowers, ancient trees, and a charming orchard.

    Explore also the grand halls and rooms of the Tudor house, and admire the tapestries, antique furniture, and original features. And don’t miss the  working watermill, where you can witness traditional milling in action.

    11) Whitsand Bay (21 mins)

    A low tide leaves the rocks exposed in the glistening sand at Sharrow Beach on the south coast of Cornwall

    Whitsand Bay is a stunning stretch of coastline with golden sandy beaches, rugged cliffs, and crystal-clear turquoise waters. It’s another place we love to take Harvey, or to go for a morning swim.  

    12) Seaton Beach (22 mins)

    Seaton Beach at sunset - golden glow and calm ocean

    With its expansive shoreline and clear blue waters, Seaton Beach is the perfect spot for sunbathing, beachcombing, and building sandcastles.

    Facing the sea at Seaton, turn left for a sandy walk to Downderry and its cute pub, the Inn on the Shore. Or turn right and have the beach and its amazing colours virtually to yourself. If the tide’s out, go all the way to Millendreath, a fabulous walk  for seasoned walkers of about 1 hour 15 minutes. Hurry though, you’ve got 2-3 hours from low tide to get there and back!

    13) Sharrow Beach (25 mins)

    A colourful sunset above the rocks at Sharow Beach Cornwall
    Turbulent waters of the incoming tide rushes around the rocks at Sharrow Beach on the south coast of Cornwall

    Sharrow Beach, nestled on the rugged coastline of Whitsand Bay has golden sands during low tides, and is surrounded by dramatic cliffs. 

     Swimming is only recommended in the designated areas when the overlooking RNLI station is open (May-September).

    There is a path with steps almost to the beach, crossing over a small waterfall via a bridge, then a careful few feet final descent over large rocks.

    14) Tregantle Beach (24 mins + 15 mins walk down)

    Large dog on a empty beach with gentle waves in the background

    Definitely one of our favourite beaches, Tregantle Beach is a section of the expansive Whitsand Bay beach one of the longest sandy stretches in the area, extending over four miles.

    Getting to Tregantle Beach can be challenging due to the steep cliff paths but the effort is worth it, as this secluded beach offers a peaceful escape from the crowds and amazing views. Bear in mind that there are no amenities close to the beach although there is often a mobile cafe at the top. During the summer months, lifeguard supervision is provided which is just as well because the rip currents are pretty strong. 

    As Tregantle Fort, a current military facility, overlooks the beach, public access is occasionally prohibited when the firing range is active (Red flags = No Entry). This is infrequent, but worth checking out online before you go.

    15) Tamar Valley (22 mins)

    Tamar Valley is a breathtaking area known for its diverse landscapes and rich history. This picturesque valley is carved out by the River Tamar and offers visitors a chance to explore its rolling hills, ancient woodlands, and charming riverside villages.

    With its designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty status, the Tamar Valley provides a haven for nature enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers. From hiking along scenic trails to enjoying peaceful boat rides on the river, there are plenty of activities.

    16) Looe (26 mins)

    Looe is a picturesque fishing village that is also a traditional English seaside town. With its sandy beaches, quaint harbour, and busy streets. in high season, Looe has a unique and vibrant atmosphere. 

    The town is known for its many restaurants and cafes and quirky shops and pubs. Looe has a fascinating past, with a medieval guildhall and the iconic East Looe Island just off the coast.

    The harbour is nicely protected so is often a good place to swim, with calm waters, very little seaweed and lots of places to sit around the edge of the beach. 

    17) Rame Head / St Michael’s Church (35 mins drive + 10 min walk)

    Long exposure sunset at St Michael's Chapel at Rame Head Cornwall

    Rame Head is a stunning headland with breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding coastline, and is a popular spot for walking and hiking. At the top of Rame Head, visitors will find St Michael’s Church, which dates back to the 13th century. 

    The churchyard provides a peaceful setting to take in the stunning views and for birdwatching, with a variety of seabirds seen in the area.

    18) Adrenalin Quarry (17 mins)

    Adrenalin Quarry is an adventure park that offers heart-pounding excitement for thrill-seekers. From zip-lining across the quarry to taking a leap of faith on the giant swing, this adrenaline-packed destination guarantees an exhilarating experience.

    The park is also home to the UK’s largest freshwater coasteering course, allowing visitors to explore the stunning quarry. Alternatively, go  paddleboarding or swimming in the crystal-clear waters.

    The Monkey Sanctuary is a home for monkeys that were previously privately-owned. Some of your ticket price will be used to lobby for new laws prohibiting the keeping of monkeys privately – after all, why on Earth would anyone want to do that? See woolly monkeys, capuchins, and macaques and watch how they interact with each other. 

    The sanctuary also provides educational talks and interactive experiences for visitors to deepen their understanding of the importance of primate welfare and rehabilitation.

    The Monkey Sanctuary is open to the public April to September each year, shutting down over the winter.

    20) Millendreath Beach (25 mins)

    Millendreath Beach is just a  leisurely walk or short drive from Looe. Its secluded location offers a peaceful escape from busier Cornwall beaches and there are cozy cafes and beachside bars where you can soak up the laid-back atmosphere.

    Adventure-seekers can try their hand at various water sports, including paddleboarding and kayaking. 

    FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

    Best Things To Do Around Liskeard, Cornwall

    Liskeard is a charming market town located in Cornwall, known for its rich tin-mining history and stunning natural landscapes. There are plenty of attractions and activities to enjoy in and around Liskeard, catering to all interests and ages. 

    What are the top attractions around Liskeard?

    When exploring the area, don’t miss the breathtaking Bodmin Moor with its ancient stone circles and the picturesque Golitha Falls. The Hurlers stone circles, nestled in Bodmin Moor, are steeped in history and provide a fascinating glimpse into the past.

    Are there any outdoor activities near Liskeard?

    For those who enjoy outdoor adventures, head to Siblyback Lake for water sports, and explore the quarries and woodlands. The Cheesewring rock formation is another great outdoor site to explore. Coasteering along the stunning river Fowey is also a popular choice.

    What cultural attractions can be found in Liskeard?

    Discover the St. Stuart House Arts and Heritage, providing insights into the local history and arts scene. Don’t miss visiting the historic St. Martin’s Church and exploring the Liskeard Museum for a deeper understanding of the region.

    History and architecture buffs may well enjoy the Liskeard Heritage Trail

    To quote the Visit Liskeard website, 

    Liskeard Heritage Trail is a self-guided walk around the town which provides information about all the interesting buildings in the town and takes around 1.5 hours to complete. There are also two complementary trails for young children, one for the town and the other for the church. These guides are available free of charge from Stuart House and Liskeard TIC or you can download a PDF of Liskeard Heritage Trail here.”

    Make sure to visit the Liskeard Heritage Trail and the Looe Valley Line for information on the best places to visit and things to do in and around Liskeard. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang fans might also recognize some filming locations near Liskeard.

    Where can I find tourist information near Liskeard?

    For all your travel needs and queries:

    • Liskeard TIC in Liskeard & District Museum on Pike Street
    • Offers advice on accommodation, attractions, events, and more
    • Gift shop, ticket sales for local events
    • Open Monday to Friday 10 am-4 pm, Saturday 10 am-1 pm 
    • Contact: 01579 349148,

    Multiple photos on this page were used with the permission of UK Photo Tours, who run photography tours of Cornwall.

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