Surfing and watersports
What could be a healthier, more fun way to spend a day in Bude than taking to the waters? Whether you’re an experienced paddler or a complete beginner there are exciting options. For the adventurous, the surrounding coast offers some of the most inviting sea kayaking Cornwall has to offer.
Canoeing, rowing and kayaking
The Bude Canal offers the closest and most sheltered choice, where novices, youngsters and families can hire pedaloes, canoes and other small craft from Bude Rowing Boats for fun sessions on the water. For beginners, local surf schools and activity providers can give you a safe headstart.
Bigger waters such as the sea or Upper Tamar Lake also await the intrepid paddler, but we would highly recommend guidance for anyone but the highly experienced. The Bude Canoe Experience offer fun expeditions on bigger waters such as Roadford Lake and the River Torridge, and come highly recommended.
There are also plenty of coaching sessions with all the gear provided at Upper Tamar Lake, where it is also possible to launch your own craft with permission.
Many sailing experts cut their teeth in Cornwall. The open sea is no place for the inexperienced, but Upper Tamar Lake has special courses through the year where you can learn from friendly instructors and hire all the necessary gear. If you’re already a keen sailor, it is also possible to launch your own craft for a small fee.
Stand-up paddle boarding
Rapidly increasing in popularity, several local companies offer lessons in Stand Up Paddle Boarding in Bude, while you’ll also find the boards to buy or hire. An increasingly popular activity on beaches in Cornwall, it’s fun and easy to get into. It’s also a great alternative activity to try when the sea is too flat calm for surfing.
Several of the less busy beaches are ideal for windsurfing. In rougher conditions however, Upper Tamar Lake is another excellent location with plenty of space.
With the Atlantic facing north coast of Cornwall rating so highly for great waves and epic scenery, the Bude area and its wild surf beaches are a brilliant destination for surfing in Cornwall. Many European Champion surfers were born and raised in the waves of Bude.
More experienced surfers will love exploring the stunning wild coastline nearby, while newcomers are well catered for with excellent surfing tuition and safe, accessible beaches close at hand. Our Bude beaches section gives you the lowdown on the best of them, along with the ideal tides to catch the best of the action. There are also some endless local and tidal nuances to discover and some amazing secret reef and point breaks. Half the fun of surfing in Bude and the surrounding area is in finding out all the local nuances and hot spots for yourself, but all we will say is seek and you shall discover!
Several Surf schools exist for all ages and abilities. They offer a brilliant head start and are listed in these pages too. With friendly, qualified tutors and all the surfing gear you need available for hire, you couldn’t wish for a finer place to learn to surf or improve existing skills. Other alternatives such as body boarding are also popular and easily arranged, while the resort also has some excellent surf shops.
Please browse our activity section for lowdown on the very best of Bude!