1. Go crabbing All you need is a fishing line and bacon! No bacon? Use muscles from the beach (crack open, then hook or tie on your line). Look for a bridge over water, throw in your line, then wait a while. The best bit bringing up the line to see if you’ve caught anything. After you catch a few crabs, let them go and race them down the slipway. Fun!
2. Discover rock pooling Put on your trainers, buy a bucket and net, and then head down to a beach with lots of rocks. Best when tide is just going out. We found a sea snail, small fish and crabs.
3. Body board You can’t come to Cornwall without putting on a wetsuit, getting in the waves and taking advantage of the Atlantic swell! Go for a beach with a lifeguard (most have in holidays and summer months). They will mark off the safe swimming areas, just make sure you stay between the yellow flags.
4. Walk on the coast Bring your walking boots… Cornwall boasts more than 400 miles of coastline, with 300 miles of it the famous Coastal Path. Have toddlers? Bring an all terrain buggy or put little ones in a baby bjorn.
5. Make sand castles Don’t like getting in the water? Grab a bucket and spade and make sand castles or a sand fortresses instead.
6. Visit a National Trust property. Try Trerice (Elizabethan manor house with gardens) or the dramatic coastline of Carnewas & Bedruthan Steps. Pick up the National Trust’s free “50 things to do before you’re 11 ¾.” You’ll tick off quite a few items just being in Cornwall.
7. Try a Cornish pasty and a cream tea. Workers used to bring them for lunch in the tin mines and now pasties are a Friday night staple in many Cornish households. What child doesn’t like minced meat and potatoes? And as for a cream tea, well, just don’t eat too many.
8. Stay in a kid friend hotel! If the kids are happy, mum and dad are happy. The Sands Resort Hotel and Spa totally understands this concept. Our favourite option: kids play supervised group games while mum and dad dine overlooking the coastline. Kids activities are extensive: 9-hole golf, swimming, tennis, basketball, football, or get just lost in a maze or fly on the zip wire. Their Surf Shack has wet suits, boogie board, wind breaks and buckets and spades to borrow. Parents with younger children will drool at all the options. Awarded Travellers Choice Best Family Hotel in Europe 2012.
Disclosure: Susanna Scott was hosted by the Sands Resort Hotel and Spa for the purpose of editorial review.