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1st August 2016 | Regional News

Triathlon Beginners Guide

triathlon in cornwall
After Alistair Brownlee’s triathlon success at the London 2012 Olympics, it’s estimated that triathlon race participation in the UK has increased more than 300% in the past 5 years.

A region that benefited significantly from Alistair Brownlee’s victory was Cornwall. The region has seen a steady growth in the number of people signing up for local triathlons since the London 2012 Olympics.

A sport that combines swimming, cycling and running, triathlons are perfect for those looking for a whole-body workout, improved health, weight loss and more energy. Like most sports though, the hardest thing is knowing where to start!

To help you over the first hurdle, we’ve teamed up with local clubs in Cornwall to unearth the best swimming, cycling and running spots in the region. With the Rio Olympic Games kicking off on the 5th of August, now is the perfect time to become more active whilst on holiday in Cornwall this year.


When it comes to outdoor swimming, there’s no better place than Cornwall. A region that boasts some of the warmest and clearest waters in the UK, Cornwall has endless amounts of lakes, estuaries and miles of crystal clear ocean for you to explore.

Video sourced from Mark Thomas

If you’re looking for the perfect wild swimming spot then seek out the stunning Atoll-Island sandbars at Pedn Vounder, just east of Porthcurno, where you will find the most beautiful sands in England, along with a spectacular Bay that has numerous crystal clear lagoons.

After you’ve finished swimming at Pedn Vounder, you can walk for one mile to Nanjizal Bay (50.0536, -5.6926) and when the tide is out, you can swim through the “song of the sea” rock arch, wallow in jade-green plunge pools and snorkel into sea caves.

For more wild swimming spots in Cornwall, please click here.


Exploring the beautiful Cornish countryside by bike is possibly one of the most underrated activities you can do whilst on holiday in Cornwall.

Video sourced from Kieran Williams

The region is a wonderful location for cycling, both on and off the road. Cycling in Cornwall will give you access to parts of the countryside you would never get to appreciate from a car. For a gentle ride, take the family along the beautiful Camel Trail from Padstow through Wadebridge and right up onto Bodmin Moor.

This picturesque riverside route passes an old disused railway line and the River Camel from Padstow to Poley’s Bridge. You start by Padstow’s lovely harbour near the delightful Prideaux Place with its deer park and gardens. You then follow the trail along the Camel estuary to Wadebridge which is an ideal place to stop for refreshments. The path continues towards Bodmin before a pleasant wooded section through Dunmere and Colquite Woods takes you to Hellanbridge. The trail finishes shortly after at Poley’s Bridge. A map of the Camel Trail route can be found here.

For more cycling routes and challenges visit Camel Valley Cycling Club where you will find an abundance of lovely coastal routes, killer climbs and the dreaded ‘Camel Bridges Challenge’. If you haven’t brought your own bike on holiday with you, then Bridge Bike Hire have you sorted. With over 400 bikes to choose from, they will be able to find the perfect bike for you.

Walking or Running

With a glorious coastline that stretches more than 250 miles, wherever you decide to venture in Cornwall you’ll be surrounded by natural beauty. The region has endless amounts of country roads, open moorlands, and stunning beaches. For walking and running, Cornwall really is the perfect place to be.

Video sourced from Awbro

A popular course for walkers and runners is from Holywell Bay to Crantock. Holywell Bay gets its name from a spring fed well, which was believed to have curative properties. The route between the west-facing surf beaches of Holywell Bay and Crantock Beach is one of the prettiest stretches of coastline in Cornwall.

The route goes past the unspoiled, beautiful cove of Porth Joke, which is home to a range of wildlife, including fulmars, grey seals and dolphins, which are frequently spotted near the distinctive Gull Rocks.

The inland loop of the circular route passes the headland of West Pentire, which is renowned for being one of the most colourful places on earth, due to the striking wildflowers which can be seen throughout the summer months.

After exploring Cornwall’s beautiful landscape by foot, bike and sea, sign up to your very first triathlon over at and become more active today. For more ideas about where to swim, run and cycle in Cornwall, please see here.

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