The Cornish coast is packed with epic beaches for surfing. We are lucky to have some of the best in Newquay – for example, Fistral Beach is often ranked as one of the top surfing locations in the UK.

But what else does this Cornish town have to offer? What about Newquay Towan Beach? This is one of the main beaches in the town but is often overlooked by visiting surfers. Towan beach is the first in a string of beaches which combined make up the Newquay bay. 

Where is Newquay Towan Beach?


Newquay’s Towan beach is located to the east of Fistral Beach – beaches and bays up and down Cornwall are created by large headlands joitting out to sea.  On the eastern side of Towan headland you’ll find the ‘new quay’ or harbour which is nestled snugly in the most sheltered part of Towan beach. 

It stretches from the harbour to Trevelgue Head. Some locals consider the other side of Trevelgue Head stretching to Beacon Cove to be part of the Newquay bay, beyond Beacon cove is generally recognized as a separate entity – Watergate Bay. 

How can you access Towan beach for surfing?

There are several weird and wonderful ways to access the beach. Newquay town huggs the beach and so offers many option for getting on to the sand. 

The main pedestrian walkway to Towan beach leads directly from Newquay town down onto the sand and waves. with such direct access it’s often why Towan beach becomes Town beach. Although there are no nearby car parks this is the most frequently used entrance for surfers, general beach goers & dog walkers.

Head to South Quay Hill and you’ll wind down the road into Newquay harbour. Theres limited pay & display parking but of you bag a spot you’ll have direct access to the little harbour beach and Towan beach. Be warned if its anywhere near high tide you wont be able to access the beach without getting wet. 

Look for Beach Road, near the Blue Reef Aquarium and you’ll be on the beach in no time.

Towan beach is the first beach in a string of beaches which together form the Newquay bay. Great Western beach connects to Towan beach and so at mid to low tide (unless you paddle) you’ll be able to walk the stretch of sand from Great Western over to Towan. The access path leading down to the beach is behind the Great Western Hotel.

How is the beach divided for surfing and recreation?


For surfing, this amazing beach has three distinct sections that offer differing conditions. Each section represents a traditional part of the beach that dates back in history – Towan, Towanor, and Harbor Left:

Towan – Accessible for surfers and holidaymakers

Town Beach is in the centre of the bay adjacent to the iconic “island” that sticks out in front of the Blue Reef Aquarium. This beach section offers great conditions for surfing and is also the most accessible part of Newquay Town Beach. 

Towan – Calmer area for beginner surfing

Towan or Town Beach offers calmer conditions and is used by both surfers and those who want to bath in the waters. The direction of this small bay means that the waves are calmer, and you can practice basic skills heave relatively uninterrupted.

Harbor Left – Brilliant conditions with offshore winds

At certain times, the area of the bay closest to the harbour wall can create brilliant surfing conditions. Offshore winds provide a challenge and are excellent for more experienced surfers.

Take a surfing lesson at Newquay Beach before stepping-up to Fistral!

We hope you have a better understanding of this often-overlooked beach. Although it is one of the most popular beaches in Newquay for holidaymakers, surfers usually flock to the iconic Fistral Beach to soak up the waves and atmosphere.

If you want to enjoy surfing at your own pace, and don’t want to learn in front of the professionals at Fistral, why not book a lesson and request Newquay Town Beach instead? This could be a great way to boost your confidence whilst still enjoying the fantastic Cornish waves. 

More like this…