Daymer Bay and Rock

Daymer Bay near Polzeath in North Cornwall
Daymer bay at low tide
Brae Hill at Daymer Bay in North Cornwall
Brae hill
Dunes at Daymer Bay in North Cornwall
Path to Rock through the dunes
Boats beached low tide at Rock in the Camel Estuary in North Cornwall
Rock at low tide

Daymer bay is situated around the corner from Polzeath, facing into the Camel Estuary. The beach lies directly in front of the car park, down a short flight of steps. The sheltered estuary means that Daymer Bay is popular for windsurfing, kitesurfing etc. There is a beach at all states of the tide and the waves are never very big so it's a safe place to take young children paddling, though in deeper water the tidal river currents can be strong so swimming out into the estuary is not advised.

At low tide all the beaches along the estuary join up into a vast stretch of sand and you can walk along the beach to Rock - it takes about half an hour. The tide comes in quite fast, but if you get cut off there is a footpath between Rock and Daymer bay through the sand dunes and around the side of Brae hill. Behind the sand dunes is St Enodoc golf course in the middle of which is St Enodoc Church

St Enodoc church is located amongst the greens of the St Enodoc Golf Course. The church dates from the 12th century and is said to lie on the site of a cave where St Enodoc lived as a hermit. It is thought that St Enoder (aka Enodoc) was the grandson of the 5th Century Celtic King Brychan.

Over a number of centuries, the church became virtually buried by the towans (dunes) and was known locally as "Sinking Neddy". In order to collect its tithes, the church had to host services at least once a year so the vicar and congregation had to enter through a hole in the roof during this period. During the 19th century, the church was excavated and later it became a favourite place of Sir John Betjeman who is buried in the churchyard.

The tourist information centre in Tintagel has a leaflet (costing 60p) for a 3.5 mile circular walk from Daymer Bay to St Enodoc Church which has lots of information about the history of the area.

By the 1880s, Rock was established as a small industrial settlement with quarries, crane and a limekiln. Stoptide and Porthilly were separate small hamlets. Rock consisted of roughly a dozen buildings including a hotel. Due to its sheltered position in the Camel Estuary, Rock became popular for sailing. In 1890 the first golf course was built. These were two hobbies favoured by the upper-class "sportsmen" of the time and this established Rock as a destination for this socio-economic group. As with many of Cornwall's most-publicised tourist attractions (e.g. Tintagel Castle and Bedruthan Steps), the patterns established in Victorian times are still being repeated and re-inforced in the 21st Century.

You can also walk round to the right from Daymer Bay on the coast path to Polzeath. There are some small beaches on the way which are best towards low tide. There are also some good rockpools on the far right of Daymer Bay and on some of the small beaches.


Drive to Polzeath and continue up the hill at the other side of the beach. Carry on past about 6 right turns (all at 90 degrees) until you come to Daymer Lane which is at a shallow angle. Turn down here. The car park is at the end of the road.

Walks to Daymer Bay

Photos of Daymer Bay on Flickr

More info