February transforms our tranquil corner of Cornwall into a haven for families seeking adventure, relaxation, and the joy of making new memories. The winter half term week can be particularly challenging as kids and pups alike yearn to play outside, shake off the cold, dark days of winter, and have some good old-fashioned fun before the school term begins. So, if you’re looking for an excuse to bundle up little ones, furry friends included, and get away for the week, we have listed 17 reasons why you’ll love a spontaneous staycation by the coast in our ultimate guide to spending half term in Cornwall this February.
Things To Do On Our Doorstep
Holywell Bay Beach
Walking distance from Trevornick & Gull Rocks Beach
Starting almost literally on our doorstep, Trevornick is located close to one of the best beaches in Cornwall, Holywell Bay beach. With 1.2 kilometres of golden sand and rolling waves to explore, it’s a natural playground kids and grown ups will love. Spend the day exploring rock pools, running across the soft sand or take to the South West Coast Path to spot sleeping seals and hidden coves. Dogs are also welcome on Holywell Bay Beach all year round – paw-fect!
Tickets from £10pp, under 3s go free!
If a nostalgic family day out is what you’re searching for, look no further than this hidden gem. Lappa Valley is a secret world of steam trains with a boating lake, adventure golf course and a new soft play area, there’s plenty of fun to be whatever the weather.
Family ticket for 2 adults & children from £46.75
Looking for something to entertain big and little kids this half term? Newquay Zoo is one of the best days out in Cornwall, with exotic animals, play parks, woodland trails and, of course, ice creams! A bonus for little ones this half term is the exciting Bing & Flop Activity Trail which runs until 3rd March 2024.
Blue Reef Aquarium
Family ticket for 2 adults & 2 children from £48.90
When the mizzle rolls in (a local word for mist & drizzle!) head to the Blue Reef Aquarium to inspire budding Attenboroughs in an underwater world full of curious creatures. See sharks, turtles, lobsters and spot the familiar cast of Finding Nemo, and make sure to head to the tropical river exhibit to meet ferocious piranhas and caimans.
Tickets £12.50pp, children under 80cm go free!
There’s a reason locals love spending a day out at Dairyland with the kids, it’s got almost everything you could need! From a giant indoor soft play complete with slides, ball pools and blasting cannons, to outdoor trampolines, zip-lines, tractor rides and amazing animal encounters (meet meerkats, ponies, goats and of course cows!), there’s fun to be had for the whole gang, whatever the weather.
Less than a 10 minute drive from Trevornick
Seven incredible golden sand beaches, a working fishing harbour, a vibrant town lined with shops and more coffee shops and sea-view restaurants than you can shake some seaweed at makes the nearby town of Newquay a must visit during a stay at Trevornick. With plenty of free parking along side streets and lower local car park charges during the winter season, embrace the slower pace of Cornish life by the seaside this half term.
Things To Do Further Afield
Eden Project, St Austell
40 minute drive from Trevornick
If you’re yet to visit the world-famous Eden Project, then February half term is the time to visit this garden paradise. With under under 16s getting free entry to Eden between 10-18 February 2024, avoid the bustling crowds and soak in the tropical warmth from the breathtaking biomes as you discover rare plants, walk across a rope bridge above the canopy, and immerse yourself in another world entirely. This half term immerse the kids in Eden’s new Science Spectacular event, an early-years activity programme or lace up the skates and go ice-skating on Eden’s ice rink (until 18th February 2024). The Eden Project is one of the best choices for a full-on day of family fun in Cornwall.
Lost Gardens of Heligan, St Austell
42 minute drive from Trevornick
With 200 acres of woodland and gardens for little legs to run free, the Lost Gardens of Heligan is a paradise waiting to be explored. As local wildlife and the gardens are awoken from their winter hibernation in February half term, let nature and imagination come to life. Discover plenty of outdoor space, playgrounds to dangle from, and a jungle rope bridge lifted straight from the Amazon, this Cornish gem is great for building an appetite for a hearty home-cooked meal back at your self-catering bolthole.
St Ives & Falmouth
Approx. a 45 minute drive from Trevornick
One of the most iconic and beautiful towns in Cornwall, St Ives makes a great day out. Explore narrow cobbled streets, white sandy beaches and watch live artists painting in the world-famous Porthmeor Studios. We promise it’s worth the drive. Top tip: Park at St Erth railway station and enjoy a short scenic train ride into St Ives, passing through Carbis Bay and along the turquoise waters of the Hayle Estuary.
Another must-visit town is Falmouth, where fishing boats and super yachts bob side-by-side in the deepest natural harbour in Europe. Explore boutique shops, rich maritime history and five course golden sand beaches. If the weather takes a turn, supercharge the half term homework and discover the science of the sea at the National Maritime Museum before heading back up the A39 to your cosy home-from-home.
Cornish Seal Sanctuary, Gweek
51 minute drive from Trevornick
If you’re heading down to West Cornwall for the day, pop into the Cornish Seal Sanctuary to get up close and personal with some of the cutest and most amusing marine animals in our waters. A charity that rescues and rehabilitates seal pups from around the Cornish coastline, big and little kids will love getting to know the rehabilitated and residential pups and adult’s personalities. And if you live in a TR, EX and PL postcode, you can sign up for a local’s pass that gives back to the charity year-round.
Get Active With The Kids
Dive Into Atlantic Waves
What says ‘Cornish holiday’ more than building sandcastles, beach combing for treasure, and exploring what lives in our rock pools. Surfing of course! While the Atlantic water is still a little chilly, don the wetsuit and take advantage of Cornwall’s reputation as a water sport haven. Sign up for family-friendly surfing lessons on Holywell Bay beach to catch waves together, test your balance stand-up paddle-boarding, or jump in feet-first with a coasteering adventure. Then turn up the heating in your lodge or get the cottage fire roaring, hot chocolates in hand. Holiday happiness achieved.
Discover The Camel Trail
If adventure is your thing but you prefer to enjoy panoramic views and not break too much of a sweat, then the Camel Trail is for you. Winding across North Cornwall from rural Bodmin to the pretty harbour town of Padstow, this flat, disused railway line has been transformed into a multi-use cycling and walking trail ideal for families, dogs and avid twitchers looking to spot some unusual Cornish birds bobbing along the Camel Estuary. No room to pack the bikes? There are plenty of bike hire points at Bodmin, Wadebridge and Padstow so all you need to do is pack your trainers, water bottle and set off.
Take A Hike
Conquer the heights of Cornwall and climb to the highest peaks on Bodmin Moor – Brown Willy and Roughtor. Pack the pasties, water bottles, and a few extra layers, and set off on an adventure for the whole family. It has incredible panoramic views (coast to coast on a clear day), rocks to clamber over and wildlife to spot from grazing sheep to moorland ponies.
Cosy Places to Eat & Drink
Cornwall is renowned for its foodie delights, and Trevornick is close to it all. If you’ve had a long day exploring the coast, take a break from the kitchen and unwind at one of the many cosy eateries nearby:
The Stable, Newquay
A family-friendly restaurant serving delicious pizza with a panoramic view of Fistral Beach that has to be experienced. No need to leave the dog behind, they are welcome too!
The Bowgie, Crantock
A pub with a view just a short drive from Trevornick. Come for the homemade comfort food and crisp pints of cold cider, stay for the panoramic coastal vistas stretching out towards Polly Joke, The Gannel and the dramatic coastline beyond.
The Smugglers Den Inn, Cubert
A 16th century pub surrounded by rolling countryside, complete with a thatched roof and roaring log fire.
For a Foodie Day Out
The popular seafood-lovers hotspot of Padstow, home of renowned chefs such as Rick Stein and Paul Ainsworth is also a scenic 38-minute drive away from Trevornick, or at the end of the Camel Trail if you opt to go by bike. Enjoy cafes, bistros, cosy tearooms and a handful of welcoming pubs all dotted around the harbour – plus there’s always Cornish pasties or fresh fish and chips straight out of the paper (just watch out for the gulls!).
Where To Stay
The chilly days of February might not inspire many holiday ideas but it’s one of the best times of the year to book a staycation, letting you take advantage of the cheaper shoulder season prices and fewer crowds on the beach. If there’s one thing that can make another month of winter appealing, it’s the thought of getting cosy by the wood-burner in a quaint cottage or spacious light-filled lodge by the sea. Here, you set the pace of your holiday and have guaranteed peace, privacy and time to enjoy a self-catering stay at your own pace.
Gull Rocks Beach Lodges
If it’s space, sea views and the chance to unwind in a hot tub you’re seeking, make our open-plan Gull Rocks Beach lodges your base this half term. Ideally placed to take advantage of beachside family living, perched high above the sand dunes of Holywell Bay beach, our contemporary lodges sleep up to 7, some also allow dogs, and include all the holiday home essentials you need to check in, chill out and enjoy a stress-free family holiday.
Trevornick’s Cosy Cottages
Full of character, our charming stone cottages are nestled in the countryside creating a peaceful place to relax and unwind. Park up, drop your bags and head out for a family adventure. When the sun dips below the horizon, head back to your home-from-home to gather for a family meal (or local takeaway) and cosy up for a family movie night by the fire. With room for the whole family including the dog, a fully equipped kitchen and rolling meadow views, it’s time to pack your bags, grab the kids and set the sat nav for Holywell Bay.
*Ticket prices correct as of 31st January 2024.