Vault beach

Beach facilities

View map of beach Parking available Toilets available South West Coast Path National Trust Dog friendly Good water quality for swimming

Season: spring

The scene setting film for this re-visit was taken from the westerly aspect of the Dodman Point, emphasising the size and arc of Vault beach.  The Dodman’s headland protects Vault from the prevailing south westerly winds, making this a clean and prime swimming spot.  It was a bright morning, heralding another warm spring day on the south coast of Cornwall.  Nature had conspired to replace much of the sand taken from the beach during the winter storms.  All  was well with the world.

Spring visit photo gallery


Bob’s and Sarah’s beach eulogies.


A view of Vault beach from the Dodman.

Season: winter

A high tide at Vault beach brought a lively sea close to the path access to the beach.  The walk down from Lamledra is always a thrill, pure unspoilt nature, with no man-made intrusions.  Perhaps this vista informs its reputation as one of Cornwall’s premier swimming beaches.  There’s a pleasing arc to the strand line as you walk by the shore, with the lofty headland ahead leading to Dodman Point and the ancient hill fort on its top.

Winter visit photo gallery – to follow.


The rejuvenating effect of the beach on Carol and Tim.


High tide in the morning at Vault beach.

Season: spring

Vault is one of the best swimming beaches in Cornwall, a perfect arc in the lea of the Dodman Point, where the sea is safe and the water is always clean.  Looking back from the waterline, all around you is pristine nature.  Few people can walk down the path from Lamledra to the beach without stopping to gaze in wonder at the scene below.  If a child were to draw their ideal crescent beach, this would be it.  Highly recommended.

Spring visit photo gallery


Jane’s euphoria in this wonderful place.


The view from above Vault beach.

Season: summer

Nature brewed a heady cocktail this morning.  Why not put yourself with me, looking out to sea?  We’re on a grassy bank, next to Vault beach, above jagged black rocks, laced with lime green lichen and rich, golden brown seaweed.  There’s a cuttlefish shell among the rocks, stark white in contrast.  A soft southerly breeze carries the scent of the salty sea past us, over the morning dew and the path behind.  Rolling green breakers pile against the beach to our right.  In front, there’s the endless rhythm of white waves breaking on black rock.  What does the beach mean to you?

Summer visit photo gallery


With Sarah, aka Sally, in rehearsal at Lamledra Barns, above Vault beach.


The sea, against the rocks and the sand in the morning.

Season: spring

The sun was shining, on Easter Sunday, for this re-visit.  A couple were swimming and the sea shone with silver patches, on a blue grey background.  Sadly, a tagged and identified dolphin was beached at the high tide mark, thankfully showing no evidence of net marks on its skin.  The low spring tide had exposed the rocks at the bottom of the beach.  The family at Lamledra House, above, always referred to this beach as The Vault.

A Vault visit photo

Spring visit photo


With Keith, savouring an escape from a hectic life, amidst the tranquility of the beach.


Looking down on Vault beach, from the Lamledra path above.

Season: autumn

This fine, crescent-shaped swimming beach lies below Lamledra House, on a promontory which separates it from the pretty fishing village of Gorran Haven, where you can find anything a day tripper might want.  Vault has no facilities and access is via a gentle path down from the car park above.  The water is always crystal clear and the south coast tide regularly radically alters the shape and depth of the beach.  One of manonabeach’s favourite beaches, I strongly recommend a visit – just see my 360 film, below, as a snapshot of how Cornwall used to look, before tourism happened.


My first view of Vault beach.


A spin around a pristine environment.


An interview with Canadians Michael and Pamela on a misty morning at Vault beach.  They were walking the full South West Coast Path, from Poole right round to Minehead.

One thought on “Vault beach

  1. Peter John Wickens

    I went to school which was situated at Lamledra House. My mate Peter and I spent many a happy hour down on Vault Beach. The things we used to find washed up on Vault beach,expended smoke flares etc. and once we found a coat.We took the coat to the coast guard office to hand it in so it could be identified. The next thing we noticed the coastguard wearing it !. From then on we kept our discoveries to ourselves. Ah, happy days.


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