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Dining out is always fun and some of the best restaurants in the UK can be found in North Cornwall – so a blowout evening or two is a real bonus for many who stay with Raintree!

Many think of Rick Stein and his restaurants as still providing the backbone to the area’s eating, but with Paul Ainsworth and a growing number of young chefs inspired by (and often trained within) some of the more famous restaurants, there are plenty of other options as well.

To tempt you, below are some of the best gourmet restaurants as well as pubs and cafes that really make an effort with their food. Grouping is by location.


For some relaxed tapas dishes in the bar / orangery or more formal dining in the restaurant, try Rafferty’s, run by Ed Rafferty who previously managed the Seafood Restaurant. Catch some local talent performing here as well with live music on Friday nights – see their Facebook page for who’s booked to play and for some videos of previous music nights.

Since opening in 2023, Crafthouse has been a hit with the locals. Serving gourmet burgers to eat in or takeaway and a well-stocked beer cellar.

The Cornish Arms just outside St Merryn towards Padstow is a Rick Stein restaurant on a long lease from St Austell Brewery. It is a good local pub with a cosy feel and great pub food. Usually pretty busy!

For a special treat, Duchy Grub up at Higher Harlyn campsite offers a selection of refined small dishes using quality, responsibly sourced produce from local suppliers. The campsite is located just outside of the village with a relaxed sun terrace that enjoys distant sea views.


The Pig at Harlyn is a great option for a smart meal in the Restaurant, or a more casual affair in the Lobster Shed – both showcase local ingredients and are great fun. Or stop by for cocktails at the bar!


Padstow remains a foodie hub. Rick Stein still has a strong presence, led by his lavish flagship The Seafood Restaurant with top quality food and an elegant atmosphere.

His other offerings are St Petroc’s and Rick Stein’s cafe, with a more relaxed feel but still good quality food and service.

Paul Ainsworth is the next celebrity chef to make his mark on the town with his Michelin Star Paul Ainsworth’s No 6 restaurant, offering a high calibre dining experience with impeccable service.

Rojano’s is Paul’s Italian restaurant, offering an indulgent eat-in menu but also providing great pizzas to take away.

You may know Prawn On The Lawn from Islington, London, but you can now enjoy their expertly prepared fresh seafood dishes in their intimate Padstow restaurant.

For a more laid back option to suit the whole family, The Shipwrights offers superb traditional pub dining at reasonable prices, with a great selection of freshly-made meals. The Shipwrights is also the best place to catch any sports fixtures, with multiple screens in both upstairs and downstairs dining areas, as well as a huge 80” viewing screen in their covered beer garden. Being right on the harbour with outside seating, it is equally suited to enjoying a chilled drink while keeping an eye on the kids crabbing at the harbour.

Reggie’s Curry, previously Mussel Box, boasts a prime spot on the cobbles by the quay. The glass dining area is a perfect setting to watch the bustling harbour with a some authentic Indian street food and a glass of wine.

A proper local pub, the Golden Lion also offers a great selection of dishes. A particularly popular option is the Sunday Lunch – but make sure to book ahead as Sunday tables here are like gold dust!

The Old Custom House cuts an iconic outline featured on many Padstow artworks and also serves pub food in the cosy restaurant. Next door is sister restaurant Cally if you prefer a more formal dining experience.

Another local pub which has moved into offering great food is the Harbour Inn – the posh poutine with thermidor sauce is a fan favourite!

Trevisker Garden Centre may not be your first thought for a meal out, but chef Henk has set up a great restaurant off the garden centre on the outskirts of Padstow serving classic dishes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Embers Pizzeria has a great selection to eat in or to take away. Why not take your pizzas to be enjoyed with a cold drink on stile field overlooking the estuary?

Rick Stein’s fish and chips and Chip Ahoy both offer takeaway fish and chips to be enjoyed at the harbour, but be prepared for the queues at the popular Stein’s collection point!


Located on Newquay’s famous Fistral Beach, The Fish House is great place to try if you enjoy seafood. There are a range of menus including a light lunch option, while the main menu features dishes from a number of different countries.  Sit back, relax, and enjoy good food and a glass of wine watching the sunset.  Be sure to make a reservation as it’s a firm favourite with locals and visitors.

With a Tripadvisor Travellers award for 2023, The Stable is a great option if you enjoy pizza with a relaxed atmosphere.  The menu is primarily based around sourdough pizza including classic recipes to some slightly more unusual options, using locally sourced produce. Overlooking Fistral beach, there is indoor and outdoor seating and has the added bonus of being able to take your four legged friends.

Toast is a small family run business in the heart of Newquay – a little gem if you enjoy tapas and cocktails with a quirky relaxed atmosphere. With vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options, there’s something for everyone. Even if you’re not looking to eat, pop in to try one of their amazing cocktails.

Sat on the Pentire peninsula with 360 degree views of the mighty Atlantic, Lewinnick Lodge combines a traditional Cornish coastal vibe and modern luxury. On offer are Cornish seafood and classic dishes, as well as global inspired cuisine, made with locally sourced seasonal ingredients.


We have a bias for our side of the estuary, but of course, there are some great restaurants on the other side too! Enjoy a ferry trip across from Padstow, which runs regularly all year round, or grab the water taxi for trips later in the day.

Having been recently named the 3rd best gastropub in the country, The Mariners by Paul Ainsworth is a definite highlight – a homely pub with fantastically executed seasonal pub classics and great views back across the estuary.

After a fair walk to The St Enodoc Hotel, you’re sure to have an appetite ready for what’s on offer. With the option of an intimate fine dining restaurant or the laid back brasserie, there is plenty to choose from. The journey back after supper can be plenty of fun on a warm and still evening.

There’s also The Dining Room, a small fine dining establishment in the village, as well as a few estuary-side restaurants for lighter bites.


Wadebridge is just a short drive away, or cycle down the Camel Trail to really earn your lunch!

The Stepping Stone is in the heart of town and is a real hidden gem. Chef Ryan Tomkins is passionate about using the best local ingredients in his cooking to produce simple tasty food. Sunday lunch is a real highlight and bookings are essential.

If you’re not hungry enough for a full three course meal, do pop into Plonk’d on Foundry Street and sample their authentic Spanish pintxos alongside a glass of wine or a cocktail. Cosy and welcoming, this is a great pit stop before venturing home!

Come back home via the A39 and try the Halfway House, a traditional country pub serving great steaks and a fantastic carvery on a Sunday.

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