We’re no strangers to the coffee dash in The Cottage Boutique office! While we have the perfect caffeine hit on-hand at The Old Forge in Lelant, we’re well-versed in grabbing a coffee on the run as we manage our portfolio of properties in the St Ives and Carbis Bay area.
We’ve listed some of our favourite coffee shops and takeaway spots below so you won’t miss out on the good stuff while you’re on holiday in our part of the world. We’ve also made some handy suggestions for those of you who like to roam, flask in hand, to a peaceful spot with a great view.
Coffee with a view
Even when we’re in a rush, we always find time to appreciate the unique beauty of St Ives. Whether we’re queuing for take-out, or catching up with friends over coffee, we can’t help but be a little in awe of how picturesque our hometown really is!
One great place to soak it all up is the Brewhouse Café, which overlooks the town and is helpfully located next to Trenwith Car Park (near the Leisure Centre at the top of the hill). Run by St Ives Brewery (there’s more than good coffee on offer!) this friendly café is the ideal place to get your bearings, as you can see most of St Ives spread out before you!
Another spot with genuinely breath-taking views is the café at Tate St Ives. Take a break from discovering the key works of St Ives’ modernism and soak up views of the place that inspired it all.
If you want to get right in on the action, the harbour is the place to be. Yallah coffee is single origin and ethically sourced from all over the world, before being roasted here in Cornwall. These self-confessed coffee obsessives have a kiosk and café right on the harbourfront, where you can grab a quick takeaway or linger awhile for cake or organic, local and plant-based bites.
Heading towards Smeatons Pier you’ll also find Mount Zion Coffee, a characterful coffee shop perched on a cobbled street just around the corner from the fabulous Wolf Rock. Refill your keep-cup here and take a stroll through the atmospheric streets of Downalong – it’s an Instagram-lovers dream!
Take to the road
Many of our favourite coffee spots around St Ives and Carbis Bay provide the perfect excuse for a day trip in West Cornwall.
Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens is a 15 minute drive from Carbis Bay. The gardens contain many impressive sculptural works by international artists such as David Nash, James Turrell and Richard Long (all members of the RA). Plan to spend a whole day here, and enjoy great food and coffee at Tremenheere Kitchen during your visit.
A 15 minute drive in the other direction will also take you to Lula in Hayle (just across the estuary from the gorgeous Sea and Sand). Brunch here, served until 11.30, is the perfect way to kick-off a day exploring the Cornish coast.
If you like the idea of a spa day, head to Una, which sits between the coast at Carbis Bay and the West Penwith moorland. Various pamper packages are available, and we love to relax in the comfy dining area with a coffee before returning to real life…
Head to the hills
Given half a chance, you’ll find us out in the countryside. So many of our favourite coffee spots involve walking boots, a flask, and a substantial stash of chocolate biscuits!
Our three top-tips for windswept walks near St Ives and Carbis Bay are Trencrom Hill, Knill’s Monument and Rosewall Hill. All three will reward you with stunning views and a distinct lack of crowds.
Trencrom Hill is a National Trust site which backs onto Carbis Bay and can be reached via an ancient pilgrimage route, The St Michael’s Way, which skirts around it. Don’t miss out on a climb to the top of the hill though, where huge stone boulders provide great vantage points for surveying the surrounding landscape. The Holding House is a beautiful, large rural property very close to Trencrom Hill.
Knill’s Monument is an invigorating walk from St Ives or Carbis Bay, and is virtually on your doorstep if staying in The Count House. The monument itself is a 50-foot-high granite obelisk which was built in 1782 as a memorial to the mayor of St. Ives, John Knill (1733–1811). Spend some time exploring the woods around the monument, before finding the sheltered side to sip your coffee!
Finally, following the back lanes from Corva Farmhouse and heading West towards Zennor, Rosewall Hill (also National Trust land) is another of our go-to spots for blowing away the cobwebs! Climb over more giant boulders for views of mine ruins, moorland and the Cornish coast stretching away into the distance. We discovered a great fact the other day; the second highest of the peaks here is called Buttermilk Hill! That certainly calls for a biscuit…
For more ideas on making the most of your trip to St Ives and Carbis Bay, check out our blog on child-friendly restaurants in St Ives.