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One of the most beautiful spots in Europe has to be the very south west of Cornwall. Between Hayle and Portwreath in particular there lie miles and miles of beautiful sand dunes known locally as the Towans.

Blown by the sea winds coming in off the Atlantic, the magnificent beach at Gwithian Towans is always a fantastic scene of kite surfers, windsurfers and swimmers. The dunes themselves are very large, yet survive thanks to the tufts of wild grass and their roots which help to hold the sands in position. At low tide the beaches appear to stretch on for mile after mile and the receding sea uncovers the most interesting rock pools and caves. Hours can be spent exploring the nooks and crannies along this vast stretch of sand all the while breathing in fresh sea air and enjoying (hopefully) the sunshine.

Given that the Towans face the Atlantic ocean, there is a constant swell which attracts surfers year round. Not only is this stunningly beautiful area popular with people and dogs but it also teems with wildlife.

Common seals are an everyday sight near the beach and the area is a breeding ground for colonies of seabirds such as razorbills, cormorants and guillemots. A popular watering hole is The Sunset Surf beachside café and bar which overlooks the beach and is open all year round. Next door is the Jam Pot Café and shop, a former 19th century coastguard lookout, is where you can enjoy home cooked snacks and be distracted by the stunningly natural views out over St Ives Bay.

Getting to the beach is easy as one enjoys a leisurely walk along a path through the sand dunes from the car park. Swimming in the sea is relatively safe given the full lifeguard cover from the 5th of May until the 30th September each year. This extends to weekend cover in October and full cover for the Autumn half term.

Gwithian provides year round great quality waves which are suitable for all surfing abilities whether it be using a body board or full sized surf board. Indeed as one moves up the beach to Godrevey lighthouse the waves become larger and larger.

There’s something for everyone at Gwithian and once you’ve worked up a healthy appetite, nearby St Ives has a wealth of healthy cafes and restaurants serving locally sourced, organic foods to satisfy the hungriest of beach bums.