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Bude Sea Tide Pool Cornwall

Top places to live in Cornwall Bude

Bude was Cornwall’s first proper tourist destination, the "Brighton of the West" until the railway line closed in the 1960s. Returning to former glory, the small friendly seaside town has plenty going on, decent schools and beautiful beaches within walking distance of the town centre. Part of our Top 200 Places to Live series.

Bude Sea Tide Pool Cornwall


Cornwall’s most northerly coastal town and often overlooked as a potential place to live, despite it going places. If you like Newquay but find it too busy, Bude is worth a gander. More off the beaten track, on a glorious stretch of Cornish coastline (is there any other kind?), Bude was voted ‘Best Coast Resort’ at the 2015 British Travel Awards.

Poughill on the outskirts of Bude has some beautiful properties with sea views and is commensurately more expensive – Flexbury in Bude itself is an up-and-coming neighbourhood with some bargains still to be had. Slightly inland, Stratton is an old village where you can even find a few thatched cottages.


Temple and Sea-Fever (previously Sazerac Social) are both popular and well-rated, as is The Beach at Bude. Scandi-inspired Electric Bakery serves up pastries and other baked goods from Wednesday to Saturday. When lockdown 3.0 is over we look forward to trying out new kid on the block, Potters properly but from Feb, they’ll be a pop up fish and chips place.


Bude is full of little independent shops including a specialist wine shop, a yoga shop and microbrewery as well as the more usual larger supermarkets on the outskirts. The high street is typical for a Cornish town including Fat Face, Mountain Warehouse, Saltrock, Boots, WH Smith and Holland & Barrett. Just outside the town is Norton Barton Artisan Food Village, home to award-winning charcuterie and rum, among other things.


The beaches are beautiful, with something for everyone, from surfers to families. Bude Sea Pool is probably one of Cornwall’s most well-known tidal pools, accessible when the tide is out at Summerleaze Beach and just down the coast you’ll find the sandy Widemouth Bay. Boscastle and Tintagel are not far away to the south and head north up into Devon to the steep pedestrianised cobbled village of Clovelly. RHS Rosemoor is just over the Devon border inland.


£295,511. Detached properties sold for an average price of £363,913, terraced for an average of £229,097, with semi-detached properties costing an average of £269,380. ­



If you’re after independents then look at primary St Petroc’s Bude or Shebbear Prep just over the border into Devon. The nearest independents are both in Devon at Shebbear College (or SEN specialists Highgate Hill House School) – otherwise it’s a bit of trek further up into Devon or down into Cornwall, with St Joseph’s School in Launceston the nearest.

State primaries nearby that are currently rated ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted include St Marks in Morwenstow and for secondary, Budehaven Community School was rated ‘Good’.

Just outside of Bude, Stratton Primary School, Kilkhampton Junior and Infant School and Marhamchurch CofE Primary School were also rated ‘Good’.


The recently renovated canal path means you can run, walk the dog, push a buggy or wheelchair or even cycle for miles on the flat.


The beauty of Bude is that it is tucked away on an isolated part of the Cornwall/Devon coastline, which is also a bit of a downside if you need to commute. It’s more than an hour’s drive to Exeter, which is also the nearest mainline station to travel to London or Bristol.

 View the full Top 200 Best Places to Live 

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