Porthcurno may be familiar to many upon arriving here as its one of the most photographed beaches in Cornwall. With golden sands and dramatic cliffs, the bay always seems to be a beautiful shade of turquoise or jade green stretching out majestically below the ridge of cliffs that lead to the Logan's Rock headland.
Of course, the most famous location here is high up in the cliffs and reached on the coast path just before you drop into the valley. The Minack Theatre is like no other in the UK, impossibly hacked out of the headland rocks, its design is similar to the classical Greek and Roman amphitheatres, but with its own Celtic twist. It was a labour of love for one Rowena Cade, who bought the headland for the mighty sum of £100 in 1920. It took over 10 years of labour to get the basic theatre ready for its first performance in 1932......aptly the Tempest and in those early days lit by car headlights.
Today there is a season long run of dramas in this fantastic location. If you can catch a play then do so, as there is nowhere else quite like it for atmosphere, particularly on a stormy night when the seas pick up their pounding. If you can’t make a performance, the visitor centre, museum and cliff top cafe are still well worth visiting along with an astonishing display of sub-tropical plants that resides here.
Dropping down to Porthcurno proper the stunning sands and blue waters make it one of Cornwall's finest beaches, protected from the road but with easy access inland to the popular beach cafe ensure - it’s a well-used spot without being overrun.
There is also a beach shop and general stores, a restaurant in the warmer months. Also housed at Porthcurno is the superb Telegraph Museum positioned in front of "secret" communications bunkers linked by granite galleries that were built by local tin miners as a precaution during the war. Porthcurno was the point that connected the UK with the rest of the world in the days before the internet and the Musuem takes you through this history and much more besides. It’s an excellent and surprising Museum, allowing you to freely explore the tunnels that run into the cliffs here with their huge underground bunkers.
More than 20 cables lay beneath the sands on the beach. You may be surprised to know that cable laying still goes on, the longest undersea cable in 1996 was laid from here to Japan via Egypt and India! In Summer, watch out below the cliffs of Treen at the end of Porthcurno beach as this is where basking sharks are often spotted.