A guide to help you find perfect Cornwall cottages

For a taste of the sea and a blast of the coastal winds, Cornwall always can oblige. Known for its warm climate and shimmering beaches, it's a place that's forever been high on the list for staycationers. Cornwall cottages offer a chance to settle in like a real local, what with their age-old architecture, cosy lounges and self-catering kitchens. This guide can help you pinpoint the pad and the place that's perfect for your West Country getaway this year.

Holiday cottages in Cornwall by the sea

One of the real joys of holidaying in Cornwall is being so close to the sea. In fact, this finger-like length of a county is surrounded by saltwater on 3 sides. That means a Cornish cottage with views of sky-blue shores and high cliffs is a real possibility.

Choose Looe cottages for a beach-side stay

The quaint Victorian resort of Looe is folded into its own river valley on the south edge of Cornwall. It sports sea-view homes on its western haunch, along with Cornish cottages just a short walk from Looe Beach on its eastern side. You can expect the true sandcastle-building and sun lounger experience in these parts, backed up by ice-cream shops and pasty outlets aplenty.

Go for Cornish cottages in St Ives

St Ives faces the sea with rows of luxury Cornish cottages. It's easy to see why the town is a hit with the fashionistas. Home-grown designer labels tout the latest in West Country beach fashion on the promenade. You can shop for new swimwear there before breaking out onto the glowing sands of Carbis Bay, right next door.

Cornish cottages to rent near Newquay

Life on the waves dominates town culture in Newquay. You'll rub shoulders with long-haired surfers as you hop between the coffee shops and rowdy beer bars. If you fancy trying your own skills on the swells, head down to Fistral Beach, where rentals and lessons are available.

Where to find cheap Cornwall cottages

More often than not, discovering cheap Cornish country cottages means heading away from the coast. That might mean you'll need a car or a public transport map to hit the famous beaches, but it also means opening up a whole load of other top-draw attractions.

Consider Wadebridge for alternative things to do

Less than 20 minutes' drive inland from the boat-bobbing harbour of Padstow, little Wadebridge has highlights of its own. Take the Camel Creek Adventure Park, a summertime fairground with twirling carousels and corkscrewing roller rides. Afterwards, you can balance all that adrenaline-fuelled fun with some heritage, at the 1700s mansion of Pencarrow.

Bargain-friendly family stays near White Cross

If you've got your eye on the wave-lashed beaches of Newquay but don't want to fork out for somewhere that's right by Fistral Beach, consider instead the resort area around White Cross. The Cornish cottages there are simple but clean and compact, with self-catering kitchens and even shared playgrounds, which should keep the kids busy after their surf lessons.

Calling green fingers to St Austell

St Austell is only a whisker away from the south coast, so you will have seaside escapes, such as Porthpean Beach and Duporth Beach, right next door. However, the main thing on the to-do list when staying in Cornish cottages here surely has to be a visit to the Eden Project. It's a huge horticultural institution, with bio-domes that hide misty rainforest flora and tropical flower beds aplenty.

Some features of Cornish cottages to watch out for

Before clicking on a holiday cottage in Cornwall, you should make sure your chosen venue has all the amenities you might want. That could mean throwing in a lacing of luxury for your fashion shopping trip to St Ives or somewhere for the pooch to sleep, along the South West Coast Path.

Get dog-friendly holiday cottages in Cornwall

Tail-wagging family members are just as welcome as 2-legged folk in many of the holiday cottages in Cornwall. It's worth checking ahead whether the beaches and parks near to your place allow dogs, though. Some popular sands, such as Carbis Bay and Marazion, tend to impose pup controls from Easter onwards.

Luxury Cornish cottages with a hot tub

Cornwall isn't only for an escape to the country, it's also for a taste of luxury, as the most upscale cottages can demonstrate. Stylish interiors, with designer kitchenware and marble-clad ensuite bathrooms, are just the beginning. You can also find places with swimming pools and hot tubs – great for relaxing in, after chilly walks along the heritage coasts.

Cornish self-catering cottages are widespread

It's unusual to find a Cornish cottage that doesn't have self-catering facilities, which is great news for budding Rick Steins who have their hearts set on shopping trips to the Padstow fish market. That said, cooking rooms can be large or small, so be sure to pick a place with enough hobs, fridge room and dining space for your holiday crew.