Looe in Cornwall attracts visitors who return year after year, by offering something special to people of all ages. It’s a family friendly Cornish holiday town and fishing port with safe sandy beaches, a beautiful river estuary, a rugged Cornish coastline, an island nature reserve, a wealth of maritime attractions including rockpools, wildlife and sea fishing, cafés and friendly locals. Quaint streets, unique shops, great restaurants and the simple things in life – the pleasure of eating a Cornish pasty, catching crabs on the quay-side or watching the fishing fleet return to the harbour to unload their catch. The scenic journey to Looe from Polraen Country House at Sandplace takes 5 minutes by car, bus or Looe Valley train with views of the river at every turn.
In Looe, each season has its unique appeal: spring fayres and rockpool rambles, summer family fun on the beach, food and drink festivals, gig racing, championship sailing, deep sea fishing trips and carnivals celebrating Looe’s fishing and maritime heritage, autumn walking and music festivals while winter highlights include torchlight processions and the famous New Year’s Eve fancy dress and fireworks.
Personal highlights are given below about Looe’s year round attraction or see What’s On in Looe and South East Cornwall in the coming weeks.
Visiting Looe by bus or train
Spot Polraen Hotel (a bit like the Railway Children!) and see wildlife and birds as the train skirts the river bank just above the water line into Looe. The Cornwall Wildlife Trust have just published a new wildlife guide for children. Few country houses offer such convenient access to Looe and Polperro without the need to use a car.
Walking near Looe
- South West Coast Path - the walk from Looe to Polperro is arguably one of the best stretches along the south coast – a distance of 9 km with beach cafes en route at Talland Bay. Use public transport door to door from Polraen, including the spectacular coastal walk.
- Looe Walking Routes and a Heritage Trail help visitors explore the lesser known back streets of Looe. Podcasts are now available to download so you can enjoy an interesting running commentary on the myths and legends of this historic town.
- Trails from the Tracks produced by the Devon and Cornwall Rail Partnership, features a selection of circular and linear walks that are accessible from various stations along the Looe Valley Line allowing you to explore the Looe Valley at your own pace.
Fishing in Looe
Looe has acquired worldwide fame as the centre for shark angling in Britain. Boats may be chartered for this and mackerel and bottom fishing. Ask Martin to share his stories and personal tips on good locations for both saltwater and fly fishing for bass.
Discovering Looe’s Wildlife
A brilliant programme of marine events is organised annually by the Looe Marine Conservation Group including rock shore rambles with experts, crabbing events, show and tell sessions, and snorkelling safaris – designed to help visitors understand the importance of our marine heritage. Take a trip to St George’s island to see our seals – a nature reserve located just off the Looe coastline.
Messing About on the River!
A range of escorted boat trips including glass bottom boats and canoe trips are available in both the Looe and Fowey River estuaries from up river, or to points along the coastline.
And now there is a wide range of first class Holiday Activities in Cornwall which you can book and pay for online in advance of your visit, via the services of Active-8 – a local company which arranges and books activities often at the same price as direct booking. They cater for families, singles, couples & groups and for beginners to experts alike. From coasteering in Cornwall to canoeing to horse riding and helicopter flights, they have something for everyone!
If you like to explore further afield, Polraen Country House Hotel is an ideal touring base . Take a look at our personal recommendations for a full day’s sightseeing. We are within easy reach of the Eden Project (35 mins by car), historic houses and gardens such as The Lost Gardens of Heligan, Lanhydrock and Cotehele and the long sandy beaches at Whitsand Bay.