Coasteering in Cornwall: The Perfect Activity for Older Kids

Are you looking for a fun but unique outdoor activity for your family?  A coasteering adventure could be what you need. The dramatic Cornish region is one of the best places to go coasteering in the UK. Imagine scouring the mile-wide bays of the north coast or scaling the rugged cliffs of the south. Coasteering in Cornwall is a surefire adrenaline-pumping getaway for thrill-seekers.

But coasteering in Cornwall is not just about thrill and excitement.  It is an excellent, albeit quirky, way to get close to nature, build self-confidence, and bond with your family.

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What is Coasteering?

Coasteering adventures have been under the radar of outdoor enthusiasts lately. But what is coasteering exactly? Coasteering is an activity that includes low-level traversing, wild swimming, scramble climbing, rock hopping, and cliff jumping. It originated in Pembrokeshire, Wales, in the 1980s, invented by surfers who clambered rocky coastlines in search of the top surf spots.

Over time, coasteering has evolved into a bracing water adventure that allows participants to test their limits while exploring stunning seascapes. 

While coasteering is about pushing your boundaries, you can choose the level of difficulty. To some people, jumping off cliffs is simply terrifying. You don’t have to do it if you think it’s too extreme. Expert guides design coasteering sessions to fit your ability, experience, and preferences.

3 women and 2 men standing on rocky hill during daytime


What age is Coasteering suitable for?

Coasteering companies have different age requirements. Some offer trips to children as young as five, while others require kids to be at least twelve. Age restrictions are usually dependent on the difficulty level of the coasteering routes.  

You will have competent guides and will be provided with a coasteering kit that typically includes a full-length wetsuit, neoprene coasteer short, half-cut helmet, and buoyancy aid. You don’t have to be a strong swimmer to participate. However, you must be able to swim for at least 50 meters unaided. 

Now that you know the basics, let us introduce our top pick of Cornwall coasteering companies.

Best Coasteering Companies in Cornwall + Best Coasteering Destinations

# 1 Quest Coasteering, Newquay

Location | 9 Esplanade Rd, Newquay, TR7 1PS

Quest coasteering Newquay
Quest Newquay

From exploring secluded coves to finding secret caves, coasteering in Newquay is a treat for adventurers. Quest Coasteering ensures you get your fill of adrenaline rush as you explore the breathtaking Cornish coastline and discover spectacular marine life. The company tailors its activities to suit your family’s abilities, so you can choose discovery coasteers if you are beginners or extreme adventures if you are hardcore thrill-seekers.

Each trip takes up to two to three hours along the coastline of Fistral Beach – one of the best beaches in Cornwall for families. The company provides the coasteering kit, but you have to bring your swimwear, a towel, and lace-up trainers or wetsuit boots.

Minimum Age | 7 years old

View on TripAdvisor here >>>

View more things to do in Newquay with kids

# 2 Cornish Coasteering – Port Quin + Port Gaverne

Location | Dinham Farm, Wadebridge PL27 6RH

Cornish Coasteering’s two key locations are Port Quin and Port Gaverne near Port Isaac, both known for their striking seascapes and rich wildlife. You will explore sea caves and narrow tunnels, swim in lagoons and rock pools, and jump off cliffs up to 35-feet high. You might catch a glimpse of bottlenose dolphins or basking sharks from the shore.

Coasteering sessions last 3-1/2 hours, including a safety briefing, travel to the venue, and a cuppa at the base in addition to the main activity. All guides had extensive training as lifeguards and first aiders. The company provides all equipment, but you can use your wetsuit if it passes evaluation.  

Minimum Age | 8 years old (an adult must accompany all children under 13)

View on TripAdvisor here >>>

#3 Kernow Coasteering, Penzance

Location | 2 Orchard Ct, Penzance TR18 4SX

(Image Credit: Kernow Coasteering)
(Image Credit: Kernow Coasteering)

Are you considering exploring the beautiful southwest by coasteering in Penzance and the surrounding area? Kernow Coasteering will take you to hidden jewels this side of Cornwall. The company covers various locations – from coasteering in St. Ives and Penzance to the Isles of Scilly and Land’s End. Additionally, Kernow Coasteering has exclusive use of their coasteering routes, so your family can really immerse themselves into nature in an uncrowded setting.

The Isles of Scilly and western Cornwall coasteering packages have a difficulty level of easy to medium. Land’s End coasteering is for advanced coasteers only and requires a minimum age of 16. Kernow Coasteering provides you with the necessary gear. No need for equipment hire.

Minimum Age | 9 years old

View on TripAdvisor here >>>

# 4 Cornish Rock Tors Ltd, Port Isaac

Location | 9 Esplanade Rd, Port Gaverne, Port Isaac TR7 1PS

Coasteering in Port Isaac is a must-do when you are in the area. Discover rock pools, scramble into gullies, swim through whitewater – all these you will experience by coasteering Cornwall with Port Isaac’s Cornish Rock Tors Ltd. The best thing about coasteering in Cornwall with this company is it seeks to create a personalised experience by maintaining small group sizes.  

Cornish Rock Tors Ltd offers introduction coasteering for beginners and intermediate coasteering for seasoned participants. The package includes all equipment, but you may use it if you have your wetsuit (must be a winter wetsuit or a 5mm thick one). The company doesn’t have changing facilities. Be sure to bring a large towel or changing robe.

Minimum Age | 10 years old

View on TripAdvisor here >>>

# 5 King Coasteer, Newquay

Location | B3276, Mawgan Porth, Newquay TR8 4BA

Coasteering Cornwall with Newquay’s King Coasteer allows you to access the secret niches of the Cornish coastline, where you can witness wildlife in their natural habitat. The jumps and scrambling give you a full-body workout without you realising it—moreover, the activities enhance trust and teamwork.

King Coasteer provides the coasteering kit, including proper footwear. You will also get free transportation to and from the chosen location of your Newquay activity. If your group has fewer than 12 people, you get two guides. Those with more than 12 persons get three.  

Minimum Age | 8 years old

Website |

#6 Lizard Adventure, Helston

Location | Lizard Head Ln, Helston TR12 7NN

Coasteering in Cornwall is both a fun-filled adventure and a learning experience for kids. No other company understands that better than Lizard Adventure. The company specialises in family activities and offers kids-only coasteering sessions. If you prefer not to join the coasteering trip, you can leave your kids with qualified instructors who will take them scrambling, swimming, and getting washed around The Lizard.

Each coasteering group has approximately eight people to make the experience more interactive. The company provides wetsuits, helmets, and buoyancy aids, but you should bring your trainers, swimwear, shorts, and towels. 

Minimum Age | 8 years old

# 7 Harlyn Surf School, Padstow

Location | S W Coast Path, Harlyn, Padstow PL28 8SB

Coasteering Padstow and its surrounding areas, including the family beach Harlyn Bay, lets you see the Cornish north coast differently. Harlyn Surf School guarantees a safe but adrenaline-fueled adventure with over ten years of experience running coasteers in the area. If you are not keen on joining the activity, you can stay near the coastal footpath along the coasteering route and watch.

The coasteering trip lasts for one-and-a-half hours. The company provides equipment; however, you should bring your trainers or wetsuit boots, swimwear, towel, and sun cream. The beach has a catering van near the car park and toilet facilities. 

Minimum Age | 10 years old

View on TripAdvisor here >>>

#8 Era Adventures, Wadebridge 

Location | Polzeath, Wadebridge PL27 6SS

Polzeath is best known as a surfing destination. But its pristine lagoons, rock overhangs, and hidden caves make it one of the most beautiful spots to discover nature in Cornwall. And Era Adventures know these routes by heart. Coasteering in Polzeath with the company is not only an action-packed experience but also one that will make you appreciate the coastline more.

The next time you think of coasteering Cornwall, Polzeath will come to mind as one of your favourite places to explore.  

The company offers beginner sessions for families with no coasteering experience and advanced sessions for more seasoned participants. The entire activity lasts for three hours. The price includes all the necessary equipment.

Minimum Age | 10 years old

View on TripAdvisor here >>>

#9 OA Surf Club, Bude

Location | Widemouth Bay, Bude EX23 0AH

OA surf club bude coasteering lesson in Cornwall

What makes coasteering in Bude an unforgettable experience? You can swim into caves, cross barnacle-covered footholds, and jump off cliffs into the pristine sea while learning intriguing tidbits about the Cornish coast.  Coasteering Cornwall with Bude’s OA Surf Club takes you to incredible locations where you might spot dolphins and grey seals and discover myriads of odd but fascinating wildlife in crystal-clear rock pools.

OA Surf Club has been running coasteering sessions in Bude for over 15 years. The expert guides know which routes are best for the participants’ abilities. A session typically lasts for two to two-and-half hours. Equipment is provided, but you should bring your own swimwear, footwear, towel, and sun-cream.

Minimum Age | 12 years old

View on TripAdvisor here >>>

Related Post: Best Theme Parks in Cornwall for Families

#10 Vertical Descents, St Ives

Location | Portmeor Beach Rd, Saint Ives TR26 1AB

Does your idea of adventure include a chance to discover Cornish sea life? By coasteering in Cornwall with Vertical Descents, you get up close and personal with the area’s marine flora and fauna through an eco-coasteering tour.

Porthmeor Plunge, the company’s primary route, comes alive at low tide with an astounding ecosystem of barnacles, seaweeds, sponges, mussels, and crabs. At high tide, you can opt for a regular coasteering session. You can brave rock formations, gullies, and whirlpools while waiting for a glimpse of dolphins and grey seals.

You can complete the tour within two to three hours. The company provides essential coasteering equipment but bring your swimwear, footwear, and towel. If your family has a whole day schedule of activities, be sure to take food and water with you.

Minimum Age | 12 years old

View on TripAdvisor here >>>

From the rock pools in Port Gaverne to the cliffs in Newquay and the swells in Polzeath, Cornwall has some of the best views in the UK and plenty of superb coasteering options to help you explore. 

If you’re planning to visit Devon, there are plenty of coasteering opportunities there too. I recommend coasteering in Croyde Bay.

Get ready with your swimwear, sun-cream, and sense of adventure – the stunning Cornish coast awaits you.