Loe Bar beach

Beach facilities

View map of beach Parking available South West Coast Path SSSI National Trust Dog friendly

Season: summer

A stiff, mild wind greeted me at Loe Bar for this August re-visit.  Franzi and Alan were walking the South West Coast Path towards Porthleven, stopping to explain what the beach means to them.  There’s a rich diversity of habitats here, with a nature reserve and Loe Pool close by the thunderous Atlantic breakers that drive against the steep sand shelf of Loe Bar.  This is nature at its most elemental, an invigorating place, especially on such a wild, windy day.  Highly recommended.

Summer visit photo gallery


What the beach means to Franzi and Alan.


A wild scene, looking along Loe Bar from above.

Season: spring

It was a fine, bright spring morning for this seasonal re-visit to Loe Bar.  This area has exceptional scenery, including the nature reserve at Loe Pool, on the landward side of the bar.  It also has a tranquil and peaceful ambience, which belies the extreme danger of bathing here.  There is a steep shingle slope just offshore, which is impossible to climb up, once in the water, hence the instructions not to bathe at any time here, however inviting it may appear.  There’s a delightful stretch of the South West Coast Path in both directions from the beach, including a fine cliff top stroll along to Porthleven.  Highly recommended.

Spring visit photo gallery


The end of an important journey for Becky.


Part of Jake’s daily routine.


Looking down on Loe Bar in Cornwall.

Season: summer

A beautiful morning at Loe Bar, an age away from the windy scene that greeted me in the autumn.  A German film crew were adapting a Rosamunde Pilcher novel, filming on the bank above the Bar, so I had a chat with two extras.  As the tide rose, you could see and feel the enormous undertow on this steep sided, lethal beach.  The difference in the water on either side of the Bar, the raging Atlantic and the tranquil Loe Pool, was marked, divided by a thin, sandy bar and a few sea cabbages.

Summer visit photo gallery


John’s affinity for the head space he gets at the beach.


Tim’s perennial love of the sea, which he passes on.


A study in tranquility, Loe Bar in the morning.

Season: autumn

Loe Bar is a raised ridge of beach above the hazardous, steep-shelved Porthleven Sands, dividing that beach from the fresh water Loe Pool, an outstanding nature reserve and beauty spot.  It’s a dynamic place to be.  I witnessed extensive renovations taking place to the main Helston outfall pipe.  I also saw first-hand the damage the sea has done to the cliffs.  Both these observations are in the films.  Access is hard won via a lane down from parking above to the south, or along Porthleven Sands from the village, or through the estate which includes Loe Pool.  There are no facilities but it’s well worth the effort when you get there.


Getting a lift with David and his concrete mixer lorry.


An interview explaining the work being done at Loe Bar.


What the sea can do to the rocky cliffs at Porthleven Sands.


A blustery view from the Bar, across to Loe Pool and back to the ocean.

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