Camping in Bude provides the perfect opportunity to visit some of the surrounding villages, such as Port Isaac, which is only 15 miles from Bude. Buses (Western National) go from Bude to Newquay every day of the week during the summer season, stopping at Port Isaac en route, making it incredibly easy to get to.
If you drive to Port Isaac, it is recommended that you park in the large car park situated at the top of the hill and then walk to the village centre, because the streets are extremely narrow. Port Isaac actually has one of the narrowest thoroughfares in the United Kingdom – which is delightfully and very appropriately called, ‘Squeezy Belly Alley’!
Port Isaac was a busy coastal port until the mid-19th century. Nowadays fishing has taken a back seat to the thriving tourist industry in the area (although there are still fishermen working from its harbour).
The centre of Port Isaac is full of cottages dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries, many of which are listed as being of historic or architectural significance. Aside from exploring the old part of the village, there is plenty to do.
A coastal path walk is the perfect opportunity to savour the incredible sea views. During the holiday season, boat trips can be booked from Port Isaac harbour, whether you want to fish or simply relax, enjoy the views and soak up the fresh air and sunshine!
Port Isaac only has a shingle beach, but a few miles away is Polzeath, one of the best surfing beaches in the whole of Cornwall. Adjacent to this is Daymer Bay beach, which is perfect for families and pets. Golf, cycling and indoor leisure centres are also within short distance from the village.
You may actually have seen more of Port Isaac than you realise. In recent years the picturesque village has been featured on screen – transformed into the fictional village of Port Wenn for the television series ‘Doc Martin’ and as the setting for the film ‘Saving Grace’, starring Brenda Blethyn and Martin Clunes.
Port Isaac is only a short walk from Port Gaverne, an incredibly pretty, secluded cove with a sheltered beach that is considered to be one of the safest in North Cornwall for children. If exploring the rock pools works up an appetite, your next stop should be in the centre of the village, namely The Port Gaverne Hotel. This inn, which dates back to the 17th century has been restored to a high standard yet has maintained its character. The Inn is well known for its delicious, homemade food and attentive staff.
If you take the opportunity to visit Port Isaac and Port Gaverne while you are camping in Bude, you won’t regret it.