South West Coast Path

South West Coast Path

An epic walk along the coastline of Cornwall, Devon, Somerset and Dorset.

3 to 12 nights
630 miles
Easy to Demanding / Strenuous

From £355 per person

Find your holiday

About the trail

At 630 miles (1,008 km) in length, the South West Coast Path is Britain’s longest waymarked footpath and the ultimate challenge for any long distance walker. The route curls around the entire peninsula of Devon and Cornwall, rounds the south-western tip of England at Land’s End, and follows the southern shore through the dramatic scenery of Dorset, constituting a major portion of the England Coast Path.

Although we provide some gentler itineraries, on most holidays, expect stiff climbs on jaw-dropping coastal trails; mile after mile of sea views; and plenty of cream teas and Cornish pasties enjoyed in seaside towns. Walking the South West Coast Path is a challenge, but an immensely (and often tastily) rewarding one.

We’ve broken the full SWCP into ten stages so you can pick and choose your favourite stretches of coast. We also offer a choice of short breaks along the path, which you can find on the South West Coast Path Short Breaks page. If you’re looking for a circular tour, take a look at our walking holiday around the far point of Land’s End Peninsula and inland along St Michael’s Way.

Choose your route

  • This route includes dog friendly tour options North Devon
  • Cornwall's Atlantic Coast - North
  • Cornwall's Atlantic Coast - South
  • Far West of Cornwall
  • This route includes dog friendly tour options South West Cornwall
  • This route includes dog friendly tour options South Cornwall
  • South Devon
  • This route includes dog friendly tour options Tor Bay and Babbacombe Bay
  • East Devon
  • Dorset

Dog friendly tours available

Dogs are welcome on select routes along this trail. Look for the pawprint icon when choosing your holiday.

Trail running tours available

We also organise trail running holidays along this route. Find out more.

About this route

4 to 7 nights
42 miles
Easy / Moderate to Moderate / Demanding
2nd January to 24th December

From £480 per person

Far West of Cornwall

Rugged granite cliffs dotted with the ruins of old tin mines, carpeted in spring with wild flowers and in summer with heather and gorse in purple and gold. This is the gorgeous scenery you’ll enjoy as you walk the coastline of Land’s End Peninsula.

Quoits, standing stones, stone circles, and other mysterious remains litter the landscape, embodying its deep connection to ancient history. With picturesque St Ives, Mousehole, Lamorna and Sennen Cove en route, this is a truly diverse and engaging walk.

Why not try the Land's End Round, which combines the Far West of Cornwall trail with St Michael's Way to create a circular route along the Land's End Peninsula? Click here to find out more.

Available tours

Code Tour Duration Difficulty Price per person
FWC1 From St Ives to Penzance 4 nights, 3 days walking Moderate / Demanding £480
FWC2 From St Ives to Penzance 5 nights, 4 days walking Moderate £600
FWC3 From St Ives to Penzance 6 nights, 5 days walking Moderate £720
FWC4 From St Ives to Penzance 7 nights, 6 days walking Easy / Moderate £840

Far West of Cornwall 4 nights, 3 days walking

£NNN per person
  • Itinerary
  • What's included?
  • Extra nights?
  • Tour facts
  • Route profile
  • Travel info
  • Weather
  • Holiday Highlights
Start

Travel to St Ives where your first night's accommodation will be booked

Day 1

St Ives to Pendeen Watch(L). 14 miles (22km) / 2421 ft (738 m) ascent

Day 2

Pendeen Watch(L) to Porthcurno(L). 16 miles (25.5km) / 2113 ft (644 m) ascent

Day 3

Porthcurno(L) to Penzance. 12 miles (19.5km) / 1414 ft (431 m) ascent

Finish

Depart from Penzance after breakfast

Your Itinerary

This itinerary lists our preferred overnight stops for this tour. Sometimes there may be a shortage of available accommodation in a preferred location, in which case we will transfer you from the trail to your accommodation and back again at no extra charge. Overnight stops marked with a (T) will always require transfers as standard.

Overnight stops marked with an (L) have very limited accommodation, and therefore more often than not will also require a transfer, particularly on bank holidays and weekends. We will use non-transfer accommodation wherever possible.

The daily mileages quoted are average trail miles only and do not include the distance from the trail to your accommodation. We do not expect you to have to travel more than a mile from the trail to your accommodation in most cases; should your accommodation be further than this, transfers will be provided as standard if practical. A very limited number of stops will require you to travel on foot up to two miles off the trail, however these instances will be clearly communicated to you if applicable.

Further transfers may also be required due to some accommodations having a two-night minimum booking policy, especially at weekends.

Below are the additional costs that may apply depending on your requirements. Dog-friendly tours are subject to a Daily Dog Charge, which will be listed below if applicable. Our standard prices per person are based upon two people sharing a room; if you are on your own, or are part of a group but require a room of your own, then the Solo Traveller or Single Supplements apply respectively:

A note about transfers
Solo Traveller Supplement
£60.00 per person / per night
Single Supplement
£50.00 per person / per night


You can add rest days at any of the overnight stops:

Extra night (Standard)
£65.00 per person / per night
Extra night (St Ives)
£70.00 per person / per night
Standard
Interactive
© Contours Walking Holidays Far West of Cornwall map
St Ives to Penzance
42 miles (67 km)
2nd January to 24th December

Holiday highlights

Enjoying spectacular views from Land’s End, the extreme westerly point of England.

Visiting the open air Minack Theatre, which perches spectacularly on the cliffs above Porthcurno Bay.

Walking through an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty as you pass through  the cove at Lamorna.

What's included?

  • 4 nights' accommodation in en-suite rooms (where available) in selected B&B’s, hotels, inns and guesthouses along the trail, or a short distance away via taxi provided at our expense.
  • Breakfast each day.
  • Door to door luggage transfer.
  • Maps with the route marked on and a guidebook or route notes describing the trail.
  • An information pack containing an itinerary, instructions on how to find your accommodation each night and a kit list.
  • Detailed travel instructions on how to get to the start of your holiday and back from the end of it.

Extra Nights & Rest Days

An extra night gives you the chance to explore some of the villages on the path, catch up with writing postcards or just relax.

The delightful town of St Ives with its narrow streets and alleyways that invite exploration, is a good choice for an extra night. It has many fascinating museums, galleries and beautiful beaches.

An extra night in Porthcurno would enable you to see a play at the spectacular open-air Minack Theatre while Penzance, with its interesting museum, fine old buildings and art galleries, is also a good choice for a rest day.

You can add rest days at any of the overnight stops:

Extra night (Standard)
£65.00 per person / per night
Extra night (St Ives)
£70.00 per person / per night

Tour Facts

Total distance: 42 miles (67 km)
Duration: 4 nights, 3 days walking
Minimum daily distance: 12 miles (19.5 km)
Maximum daily distance: 16 miles (25.5 km)
Code: FWC1 Grade: Moderate / Demanding
Season: 2nd January - 24th December
Start of holiday: St Ives
End of holiday: Penzance

Route Profile

Far West of Cornwall Route Profile

Travel Information

Useful information and travel links that will assist you in your plans to travel to the start of the holiday and back from the end of it are sent to you with your full tour pack. A summary is given below:

By Air - The most convenient major city and international airports are Exeter, Cornwall Airport Newquay and Bristol.

By Rail - There is a rail station at the start of the trail (St Ives) and at the end of the trail (Penzance).

By Bus - Various bus services run to St Ives and from Penzance.

From London - Trains run from London Paddington station to St Ives.

Return To The Start - The easiest way to return to the start of the trail is to catch the train from Penzance to St Ives.

Weather Information

To find out more about the weather forecast for your chosen holiday's general location, please see the following websites:

  • MetCheck - This website allows you to look up detailed weather information for specific locations as far as six months in advance.
  • Met Office - This website shows regional area forecasts a few days in advance, with a general UK forecast description of up to 30 days in advance.
  • Mountain Forecast - This website shows what the forecast is like up on specific hills and fells, and offers forecasts a few days in advance.
"Tin Mines at Botallack" by Steve Woodward (2022) "Tin Mines at Botallack" by Steve Woodward (2022)
"Bay past St Ives" by Jeff Dell (2021) "Bay past St Ives" by Jeff Dell (2021)
"Just past Sennen Cove" by Marc Campion (2019) "Just past Sennen Cove" by Marc Campion (2019)
"On the Way to Sennen Cove" by Marc Campion (2019) "On the Way to Sennen Cove" by Marc Campion (2019)
"On the Way to Zennor" by Marc Campion (2019) "On the Way to Zennor" by Marc Campion (2019)
"Just before Porthcurno" by Marc Campion (2019) "Just before Porthcurno" by Marc Campion (2019)
"Just out of Sennen Cove" by Marc Campion (2019) "Just out of Sennen Cove" by Marc Campion (2019)
"Waymarker before Cape Cornwall" by David Hackett (2019) "Waymarker before Cape Cornwall" by David Hackett (2019)
"Botallack Mine" by David Hackett (2019) "Botallack Mine" by David Hackett (2019)
"Minack Theatre in Penzance" by Jinru Chen (2019) "Minack Theatre in Penzance" by Jinru Chen (2019)
"St. Michaels Mount" by Blais Brancheau (2018) "St. Michaels Mount" by Blais Brancheau (2018)
"Between St Ives and Zennor" by Blais Bracheau (2018) "Between St Ives and Zennor" by Blais Bracheau (2018)
"View from the Castle at St. Michaels Mount" by Anne Hemingway (2017 "View from the Castle at St. Michaels Mount" by Anne Hemingway (2017
"Between Pendeen Watch and Sennen Cove" by Anne Hemingway (2017) "Between Pendeen Watch and Sennen Cove" by Anne Hemingway (2017)
"Bay at St. Ives" by Anne Hemingway (2017) "Bay at St. Ives" by Anne Hemingway (2017)
"Lizrd Lighthouse" by Cornelia Selzer (2017) "Lizrd Lighthouse" by Cornelia Selzer (2017)
"Botallack Mines" by Sandra Steel (2017) "Botallack Mines" by Sandra Steel (2017)
"Minack Theatre" by Sandra Steel (2017) "Minack Theatre" by Sandra Steel (2017)
"Pendeen Watch" by Sandra Steel (2017) "Pendeen Watch" by Sandra Steel (2017)
"Between Penzance and Porthleven" by Harriet Ells (2017) "Between Penzance and Porthleven" by Harriet Ells (2017)
Harbour Sand - Harbour Sand
Harbour Sand Harbour Sand
Walking Toward Mans Head - Walking Toward Mans Head
Walking Toward Mans Head Walking Toward Mans Head
St Ives Harbour - St Ives Harbour
St Ives Harbour St Ives Harbour
Walking Toward Levant Mine - Walking Toward Levant Mine
Walking Toward Levant Mine Walking Toward Levant Mine
St Ives Lighthouse - St Ives Lighthouse
St Ives Lighthouse St Ives Lighthouse
St Michael's Mount - St Michael's Mount
St Michael's Mount St Michael's Mount
St Ives Harbour - St Ives Harbour
St Ives Harbour St Ives Harbour
South West Coast Path Sigh Post - South West Coast Path Sigh Post
South West Coast Path Sigh Post South West Coast Path Sigh Post
Sigh Post Near Cape Cornwall - Sigh Post Near Cape Cornwall
Sigh Post Near Cape Cornwall Sigh Post Near Cape Cornwall
Porthmeor Beach - Porthmeor Beach
Porthmeor Beach Porthmeor Beach
Porthmeor Beach - Porthmeor Beach
Porthmeor Beach Porthmeor Beach
Porthminster Beach - Porthminster Beach
Porthminster Beach Porthminster Beach
Porthmeor Beach - Porthmeor Beach
Porthmeor Beach Porthmeor Beach
Porthmeor Beach - Porthmeor Beach
Porthmeor Beach Porthmeor Beach
Porthmeor Beach - Porthmeor Beach
Porthmeor Beach Porthmeor Beach
Marazion Beach - Marazion Beach
Marazion Beach Marazion Beach
Pendeen Lighthouse - Pendeen Lighthouse
Pendeen Lighthouse Pendeen Lighthouse
Porthcurno Beach - Porthcurno Beach
Porthcurno Beach Porthcurno Beach
St Ives Harbour Sand - St Ives Harbour Sand
St Ives Harbour Sand St Ives Harbour Sand
Cape Cornwall - Cape Cornwall
Cape Cornwall Cape Cornwall

Customer reviews from the Far West of Cornwall

“Superb planning, great lodging, great breakfasts, great support throughout! All went according to plan! We had a wonderful time and plan to return for another Contours adventure as soon as possible!”
Mr Taylor, USA
“It is very beautiful, rugged country.”
Mr Stallings, USA
“Everything on the first two holidays was great, from the holidays themselves to the organisation of all the Contours stuff. This latest recent holiday was also fantastic... Am happy to recommend Contours and will certainly be using you again.”
Mrs Campion, UK
“The third section of the Southwest Coast Path. Scenery and weather got better and better. Beautiful Cornwall.”
Mr Kuhns, USA
“Everything worked really well.”
Mrs Ganley, UK
“Beautiful scenery but challenging.”
Mrs Tutt, UK
“Great walking, fantastic weather, generally good B&B's.”
Dr Pearlman, UK
“It was a good section of the SW Coast Path - very scenic. Not as tough as I was expecting.”
Mr Scott, UK
“Beautiful scenery.”
Mrs Reynolds, UK
Find your holiday