Accessible Activities in Cornwall near Trevassack
Here at Trevassack we only offer activities that are suitable for all ages and abilities – we don’t want anyone left out. But just in case you don’t want to spend your entire holiday in Cornwall by our lovely lake, we’ve put together a list of activities for you to visit during your stay. If you find any places you think should be added to this page, please do let us know and if you have photos, even better!
The list is split into Outdoor Activities, Inside&Out and Indoor Attractions, with each list starting with the closest option to Trevassack, then moving further away. We’ve mentioned the additional facilities available for SEND and wheelchair-users and at least one of the staff here have visited each of the places listed (although we can’t be held responsible for individual experiences!)
Cornish Seal Sanctuary
Gweek | 4.2 miles | 9 min drive
A wonderful charity that saves and rehabilitates seals that are rescued from around the Cornish coastline. It’s also a long-term sanctuary for seals that can’t be released back into the wild, providing them with a safe environment to live out their days with friends and plenty of fish. Regular talks and plenty of signage tell the stories of the individual creatures and you can see them up close in the pools and through glass viewing windows, with plenty of flat pathways to let everyone in on the action.
As well as seals of varying ages, the rescue also homes Humboldt penguins and the occasional sea lion! The Seal Hospital helps over 70 seal pups each year at a cost of £2000 a time, so your visit will help support the work they do – and you get a lovely wheel or walk around the acres of countryside this sanctuary is set in – don’t forget to take a picnic!
Coronation Park Boating Lake
Helston | 6.4miles | 12 min drive
In the centre of Helston is a community charity-owned shallow lake with a plethora of bird life, flat level access around, a café, playpark and cycle hire. The car park is strictly ticketed, even if you just stop to survey the area, so you may prefer to park further down the road at Fairground for free and cross the road to the lake.
The area around the lake has been landscaped with accessibility in mind for both wheelchair users and visual impairment, with an events space and lots of benches to perch on. There’s ramped access to the Lidl next door if you want to pick up some picnic bits.
You can probably spend an hour or so here, depending on how many cups of tea you have, but over the road there is access to the Penrose walks and estate:
Penrose Estate Walks
Helston/Porthleven | 12-18min drive
You can walk/wheel the path from the Fairground carpark (over the road from Helston boating lake, and free whereas boating lake car park is strictly ticketed) all the way to Porthleven, although some areas are more challenging than others – the decent pathways take you along Cornwall’s largest natural lake and there are some lovely views, with benches along the way. Part of the estate is private, including the main estate house, but it overlaps National Trust land and if you prefer, there is a National Trust car park on the outskirts of Porthleven, just a 14min drive from Trevassack with a short walk to The Stables café (seasonal opening). The ground gets more uneven, muddier and steeper the closer you get to the coast, but you can go a fair way in a wheelchair for fresh air, dog walks and trees to the edge of Loe Pool.
See their map for varying paths – the east side of the lake is much muddier and not suitable for wheelchairs, and please don’t let your dog (or people) go in the water around these parts.
Penryn | 7 miles | 20 min drive
A large coarse fishing lake with Wild Vibes café with wheelchair access, a lovely opportunity to get out in the fresh air and experience the views and nature of the site. If you enjoy fishing, you can buy half day or full day licences and bring your own kit, or just trundle the 2 miles of circular footpath to the play park and across the viaduct before stopping for coffee. Just pay for parking and bring the dog for a gentle foray with plenty of rest stops.
Falmouth | 13 miles | 35min drive
A favourite with our guests, people with any disability can get out in the Fal Estuary and feel the exhilaration of high speed boat travel on the open water. And not just as a passenger – the purpose-built, adapted craft with ramps and specialised steering controls means that anyone can take to the helm and drive the boat themselves!
Tours of the estuary, wildlife trips and fishing charters are all available, so take a look at their website to choose your favourite for your accessible holiday in Cornwall.
Tehidy Country Park and Cafe
Camborne | 18 miles | 40 min drive
The largest area of woodland in West Cornwall, steeped in local history with lots of trails to follow of varying distance and difficulty. Landmarks such as the twisted tree and Lady Basset’s Well provide points of interest but it’s just a beautiful place to get out in the fresh air and appreciate nature – it’s worth making the effort to go when the carpets of bluebells are in bloom.
It’s a natural environment, so not all suitable for wheelchairs, depending on the weather, but the free car parking is wheelchair accessible, with detailed maps of the pathways, waterways and picnic areas.
Tehidy is also home to the Rogue Theatre, a drama groups that put on interactive plays through the trees that locals and tourists rave about.
The café is a welcome treat if you don’t take a picnic, but currently closes Monday and Tuesdays.
Lost Gardens of Heligan
St Austell | 33 miles | ~1hr drive
A magical place to visit, particular in winter when they go to town with lighting displays to create a glowing dreamland in nature. The site is big at 200 acres with approximately 13 acres accessible via pathways so wheelchair users can visit the Productive Gardens, Pleasure Grounds, Home Farm and Steward’s House – by their very nature, the Jungle and rest of the estate are less suited to those with limited mobility as the pathways can be steep with occasional steps and boardwalks. They have wheelchairs and mobility scooters available for free loan plus a Changing Places facility.
It’s a fascinating and beautiful place to visit, having been rediscovered in the 90s and landscaped substantially to great effect. With plenty of Insta-worthy moments, all ages can enjoy this little piece of paradise in Cornwall.
Helston | 6.3 miles | 12 min drive
The Best Day of the Week! And many locals as well as visitors can contest to the family fun at Flambards, a small but perfectly formed theme park with rides and exhibitions, shop and café. It is fully accessible for wheelchair users, with accessibility route maps available, but also disabled loos, parking, Hearing Loops, free wheelchair hire and reduced prices for accompanying carers. Even the indoor Victorian Village is accessible if you follow a particular route that includes the poignant Britain in the Blitz exhibition. It’s an unusual indoor museum set up as a tour of olde worlde streets lined with shops that show off historical items of interest including ephemera, costumes and working machinery. It’s weird but wonderful.
Please contact Flambards direct for details of disability-friendly rides.
St Keverne | 6.3miles | 11 min drive
If you want an ice cream, this is the place to go. If you want an ice cream in the countryside and a wander around a working farm with nature ponds and feed the animals, this is definitely the place to go. The car park is next to the entrance and the ground a little rough, but manageable. The trails take you through the 20 acres of wild woods so if the weather has been wet, it’s not the easiest, but the main farm area is concreted to explore the Milking Parlour, small shop and most importantly, the Croust House where lunch and ice cream are served.
Calves, birds, sheep and pigs are penned right next to the (free) car park so are easy to visit for any mobility, if they’re feeling friendly enough to come to the fence!
Pool | 16 miles | 30min drive
The entire 19acre site is accessible, save for the one engine room that historical architecture won’t allow for a lift. It’s a social enterprise, entirely free to visit but they do appreciate your custom in the café and soft play. Assistance dogs are welcome, there is a Changing Places next to the free disabled parking, Hearing Loop facilities but you do have to book use of the mobility scooter in advance.
It’s a family-friendly attraction with a mining museum, exhibitions, gardens and playgrounds with plenty of green space for good weather days and indoor soft play plus a café for when it rains. It’s set up as an events space so there is usually something going on among the heritage.
Redruth | 18 miles | 35min drive
Something a little bit different, this is at its core, an enormous jewellery shop, but they’ve put on other attractions to make it more of a destination, such as crazy golf for when the sun shines, gold panning (free!), oyster catching, Build a Bear, paint pottery and witness first-hand how tin is extracted and formed into beautiful jewellery at the Tolgus Tin Mill – it’s free entry but you pay for what you want, so worth popping in if you’re in the area – there’s a café at the very least. As one reviewer on their site states, ‘it’s so much more than a shop!’.
Disabled access is through all the main areas and there are disabled toilets but some areas, including the Tin Mill have uneven or gravelled surfaces.
Sennen | 29 miles | 55mins drive
When you’re this far west, it’s understandable to want to go to Land’s End – the furthest west you can be in mainland England. It gets mixed reviews from locals who remember when it used to be free to take your photo with the famous signpost, but it’s a large, accessible site with both indoor and outdoor attractions. The views are astounding, and the large hotel restaurant has plenty of outdoor seating to take advantage. Wander the 200 year old farm and visit the animals, take the children to the current exhibition (22/23 is Aardman Presents: A Grand Experience ) plus the Jolly Roger 4D Film Experience and Arthur’s Quest. Depending on your mobility, the coast path takes you around the incredible coastline and you can walk as far as you like – to Minack, Cape Cornwall and beyond. Plus there are lots of information boards about the unique natural environment and wildlife of the area. Or just peruse the West Cornwall Shopping Village on site instead.
Helston | 6.3 miles | 12 min drive
Indoor soft play for under 11s, but the modern building is wheelchair-friendly with disabled toilets and a lift to the upper floor. Stop at the café for a bite while the little ones go wild on the play equipment!
National Maritime Museum
Falmouth | 14 miles | 35min drive
‘Enrich your understanding of the sea and Cornwall’ at this independent museum and charity, run by volunteers and reinvesting ticket sales back into the facilities. All five levels of the modern building are accessible by lift or ramp, with Mobiloo accessible facilities and Adi Room Mates, free wheelchair loan, BSL tablet tours, Hearing Loops and Sensory Bags, plus staff are trained in a range of disabilities. Carers and companions are even admitted free of charge with a full paying visitor – this place is doing their utmost for inclusivity as well as providing an interesting and varied attraction with interesting exhibitions all year round.
It’s conveniently placed to explore Falmouth town and there are two car parks close by (these can get busy in peak times) with disabled spaces.
St Ives | 21 miles | 45min drive
St Ives itself can be tricky to navigate as a wheelchair user, with narrow cobbled and steep streets plus limited parking. However, the Tate gallery is set up out of town (on a steep hill!) with parking behind and lots of accessibility features – a very professional set up.
If you like art and the sea, this is a must-do as the gallery is set overlooking Porthmeor beach, with amazing views from the windows to distract you from the modern art inside. There are lifts to each floor, and lots of descriptions on the website for sensory needs. Folding stools, headsets and visual description cards are just some of the aids available.
St Austell | 38 miles | 1hr15 min drive
A main attraction here in Cornwall, and a fair drive from us at Trevassack, but if you like plants, sculpture and futuristic architecture, it’s a must-do. They’re pretty well set up, with accessible parking spaces and toilets, miles of sloping pathways down into the ex-clay pit site, free wheelchairs (some powered, which is useful here!) and free entry for carers or personal assistants. There is also hire of a single off-roader mobility scooter, but make sure you book ahead to access the more challenging areas of the site. If you have visual impairment, there are text readers and braille guides to support you.
Entry is via a Visitor Centre, with flat level access, lots of helpful staff and the Changing Places facility plus ADI toilets and an accessible café.
This place is out-of-this-world – the viewing platform gives you a sensory delight with sights, sounds and smells to indulge before delving down in to the lush surroundings – or traverse the Rainforest Canopy walkway (mostly accessible). In the winter you can take a manual wheelchair out on the ice rink! And year-round, the zip wire whizzes you over the biomes, with the option to arrive an hour early for exclusive disabled access.
All in all, this is a very well set up and unique enterprise, particularly for sensory needs – perhaps a day’s stop off on the way home out of Cornwall?