There’s fantastic running in Newquay, a town on the north coast of Cornwall, known for its beaches, surfing, and gorgeous headlands. The must-do run is the route above Newquay Bay out to Towan & Pentire headlands. Also in the area are great beaches for running and more extensive options in several National Trust properties and sections of S W Coast Path.
Newquay to Pentire Headland. A fantastic and fairly easy run with several elements. Start next to the Newquay Train Station and and run west along the paved S W Coast path above Newquay Bay. Cut through Killacourt Park to the marina, and take Headland Rd. to the flat, easy path that leads out to Towan Headland. Retrace your steps, and continue west along the S W Coast Path to Fistal Beach. Here, you can run for ~0.5 miles along the beach (good beach for running!), or above it on the S W Coast Path. At the western end, join the waterfont Esplanade Rd., enjoying great water views for 0.7 miles, and then the flat, easy path for 0.5 miles out to Pentire Headland.
Beach Running. Perranporth Beach, located 9 miles south of Newquay is one of the best beaches for running in Cornwall. This wide, flat, golden sand beach features firm sand for running at nearly all times. There are scenic dunes as you run along this nearly 2-mile long beach. Whipsiderry Beach, just north of Newquay is also great for running. ~2 miles.
Headlands. There are several headlands on the North Coast that are great for running. In addition to being sections of S W Coast Path (varying levels of difficulty), there are National Trust properties that feature ‘walks’ that are great for running.
- Towan Headland & Pentire Headland. See the above Newquay Run. Additional sections of S W Coast Path.
- Porthcolan Beach to Park Head. Easier section of S W Coast Path. 1.3 miles one-way, with spectacular views. Porthcolan Beach is 8 miles north of Newquay.
- Trevose Head. Located 14 miles north of Newquay and one of the most prominent headlands on the north coast. National Trust information on headland & walks.
- St. Agnes Head. Located 13 miles south of Newquay. Some easier National Trust walks that are good for running, featuring coastline, headland, & interior heathland. Walk Information. Also sections of S W Coast Path. The walk 3.6 mile walk from Perranporth to St Agnes is generally flat, with one steep climb.
Additional S W Coast Path Options. See this link for extensive trail running options on the S W Coast path, both north and south of Newquay. Ranges from easy to challenging. Excellent information, maps, and directions.