Fishing around Tintagel and in North Cornwall

Sea angling in North Cornwall

Beachcasting on Trebarwith
Beachcasting at Trebarwith
Fishing at Port Quin
Port Quin
Fishing on Bude breakwater
Bude breakwater
Tregardock beach
Tregardock beach
Pollack cuaght near Port Isaac
Pollack at Port Isaac
Mackerel caught sea kayaking

There is some good sea fishing around Tintagel. There are good rock platforms at:

If you have a good casting rod and feathers, you should be able catch some mackerel and often pollack and garfish. Watch out for snagging your feathers on the rocks though. Float fishing amongst the rocks can also be very productive and you are less likely to lose tackle. Sandeel and strips of mackerel seem pretty good baits for float fishing; mussels are very abundant but not very durable. Dawn and dusk are particularly good times for pollack. There also loads of wrasse around - they aren't much good to eat so if you catch them, please try to release them. There are a lot of gurnard (red, grey and tub) in Port Isaac Bay so if you're bottom fishing particularly into deeper water off one of the headlands you may catch one.

A number of anglers have drowned fishing from the rocks along the North Cornish coast in recent years either by being washed off rocks or by slipping in. Rock platforms are generally pretty unsafe when it's wet (slippery paths and rocks) and when there is a big swell (freak waves), so be wise and go for a safer alternative in those conditions. If you are fishing off the rocks, it's worth considering some kind of buoyancy aid which could save your life if you do fall in (e.g. a lifejacket or even better a wetsuit which will keep you warm as well as provide buoyancy); there are strong currents around many of the headlands so getting back out of the sea is harder than you might think.

For anyone brave/insane enough to go night fishing for conger eels, there are some monster congers down there amongst the rocks - we've seen congers with the girth of a dinner plate caught in lobster pots around Port Gaverne. Apparently in the old days the locals would salt them and hang them from the ceiling to be carved like bacon! Note that the meat of even large congers is full of small bones. If you go night fishing, please be REALLY careful of hazards such as freak waves, slippery paths/rocks and possibly several feet of angry gnashing conger eel!

The west-facing sandy surf beaches at Tregardock, Trebarwith Strand and around Bude (Crooklets, Sandymouth, Northcott Mouth and Widemouth) are good for flatfish, rays and the occasional turbot, a couple of hours either side of low water. Tregardock in particular is good for plaice possibly due to the abundance of mussels in Port Isaac Bay. Mussel is definitely a good bait if you can get it to stay on your hooks. Having said that, we've caught plenty of flatfish using mackerel as bait. Watch out for getting cut off by the tide on these beaches which have a big tidal range and often you can't get all the way across the beach except towards low tide. Also be on the watch out for freak waves.

With a beachcaster, or speargun and snorkel it's possible to catch bass off Hole Beach. The bass generally feed on sandeels here, so that is definitely the best bait. They move offshore in the winter and early spring to breed so late spring through to the end of the Autumn is the best time for them.

If you have a sea kayak and a handline you can have a lot of success feathering for mackerel. There are also plenty of inshore reefs which are good for pollack. If the sea is calm in the Spring you can also catch cod on the reefs. See our kayaking page for more info on places to launch kayaks.

More info

Trout and Salmon fishing in North Cornwall

Lower Tamar Lake
Lower Tamar Lake

If you fancy salmon and trout fishing:

  • You'll need a trout and salmon licence which are available from the Post Office in Tintagel if you don't already have one.
  • Check the season for each lake and river - they usually run from some time in March to October but the exact dates vary.

Rivers in North Cornwall where you can fish for wild brown trout, sea trout and salmon include:

There are a number of beats along the Camel and Tamar and their tributaries which participate in the westcountry angling passport scheme. Some nearby lakes are also stocked with trout:

  • Crowdy Reservior on Bodmin Moor has rainbow and brown trout. Provided you have a rod licence you can fish for free by spinning, fly or bait.
  • Colliford lake on Bodmin Moor is regarded as Cornwall's premier brown trout fishery. Day permits for fly fishing can be obtained from the Jamaica Inn.
  • At Siblyback lake on Bodmin Moor there is fly fishing for rainbow trout. Day permits are available onsite. There are also angling boats available which should be booked in advance on 01570 346 522.
  • At Lower Tamar Lake near Bude, you can fish for rainbow and brown trout. Day permits are available from the self-service unit in the car park.
  • Bragg's Wood Water at Boyton near Launceston. Tel. 01566 776474
  • Venn Down Lakes, Trebowen in Trevalga on the way to Boscastle. Tel: 01840 250018. Day ticket.
  • Rosepark Fisheries at Tresibbett near Altarnun. Tel: 01566 86278. Day ticket.

More information about game fishing in Cornwall

Coarse fishing in North Cornwall

Fishing on Bude Canal
Coarse fishing on Bude Canal

There is coarse fishing at:

  • Ferndale lakes in Delabole. Tel 01840 212091
  • Bude Canal which is stocked with carp, tench, rudd, perch and bream. Permits may be obtained from the Bailiff who patrols the canal bank.
  • Upper Tamar Lake near Bude - 81 acres stocked with rudd, carp, tench, bream and dace. Day and night tickets are available from a self-service unit at the dam.
  • Lower Lynstone Lakes near Bude - 2 lakes stocked with mirror carp and common carp and tench. Tel 01288 352 726.
  • Houndapitt Farm, Sandymouth near Bude. Tel: 01288 355455. Day ticket.
  • South West Lakes, Trust Sparra Park Cottage, Kilkhampton near Bude. Tel: 01288 321262.
  • Dutson Water, 1.5 miles north of Launceston on the A388, has carp (common, mirror + crucian), tench, bream, golden orfe, rudd, etc. and also trout. Tel 01566 772607.
  • Tredidon Barton Lake, 5 miles west of Launceston on the A395 has carp, tench, roach, bream and ghost carp. Tel 01566 86288.
  • Hidden Valley Coarse Fishing near Launceston. Tel: 01566 86463. Day ticket.
  • Prince Park at Withiel near Bodmin. Tel: 01726 890095. Day ticket. Book tickets in advance.
  • St. Leonards Coarse Fishing Lake at Polson, Launceston. Tel: 01566 775543. Day ticket.
  • Stowford Grange Fisheries at Lewdown, Launceston. Tel: 01566 777230. Day ticket.

Places you can buy fishing tackle and bait in Tintagel

Mussels at Trebarwith Strand

You can buy bait at the harware shop opposite Tintagel Visitors Centre. You can also dig lugworm at low tide at Daymer Bay and collect mussels at low tide at Trebarwith Strand. Other tackle shops in North Cornwall include:

  • Bodmin: Rogers Tackle Shop. Tel 01208 78006
  • Padstow: Padstow Angling Centre. Tel 01841 532762
  • Bude: Water Front Fishing & Shooting. Tel 01288 359606

See our page on foraging for mussels for more info on getting these for bait or to go alongside your catch!