Photo of Bude

About Bude

Bude is a bustling coastal centre on a spectacular stretch of coastline. Bude Canal runs out into the harbour, making a narrow, and dramatically tidal beach, which is much loved by surfers, while just around the headland is a long, slowly sloping sandy beach. And on the headland itself is Bude Sea Pool, an all weather swimming pool cut directly into the cliffs. The town centre is friendly and functional, rather than picturesque, with rows of surf shops and cafes, plus a couple of nice boutiques and a book shop. Some of the best places to stay in Bude are located between the main street and the cliffs, where they have breathtaking, uninterrupted views of the ocean. But there are also some quieter options just outside of town, and along the coastline off Widemouth Bay.

If you’ve never tried surfing, Bude is the place for it! While there are plenty of experts, there are also lots of novices, and the atmosphere is friendly and encouraging. If it’s not something you’ve ever considered, you might just want to watch, from either a sunny spot in the sand dunes, or the beach bar and cafe. Both sides of the harbour have wonderful ocean views, and offer opportunity for windswept country walks — just you and the grazing cows. There are plenty of small, quieter beaches and coves, it just takes a well timed stroll along the beach to discover them — remembering the dramatic tidal range. 

Bude’s castle is something of a folly, really, built by a local inventor, and now home to exhibition and gallery space. And just below the castle, by the canal, are a couple of little galleries. Bude is also a very pleasant drive from historic Tintagel, picturesque Port Isaac and the spectacular walking trails of the Hartland Heritage Coast. You’re also within striking distance from Padstow and Rock. So the best places to stay in Bude offer a great base for exploring the whole of the north Cornish coast.

The Best Places to Stay in Bude

For a Beach Break

  • The Beach at Bude is a simple but stylish hotel overlooking the surf beach at Bude. It’s pleasantly tucked away, while still being just off the main shopping street, and offers accommodation in 18 rooms and suites, all of them light and airy, and some of them great for families too. Expect contemporary style, a laidback restaurant and an outdoor bar with sea views. Our favourites are the five rooms with private sea terraces.

Prefer a Private Apartment or Cottage?

  • If you'd prefer the privacy of a self-catering option then browse through the wide variety available online with our partner,

Travel Information

  • The closest airport to Bude is Cornwall Airport Newquay, which is about an hour away by car or taxi, or about two and a half hours away by bus — this is not the easiest region to be relying on public transport. Exeter International Airport is probably next closest, still just over an hour away by road, and three hours by train and bus. If you’re coming down to Bude by rail from London your journey will take you from Paddington to Okehampton or Plymouth station, from where you’ll need to catch a bus to Bude. All in that takes between six and seven hours.
  • If you want to hire a car we recommend you visit our online partner, Rentalcars.
  • Bude is most popular in the summer, but it’s equally busy during other school holidays, and has a regular flow of surfers visiting year round The sea pool is open every day except the most stormy. Bude is warm and sunny in the summer, and whilst its charms are still in evident in the winter, not all of its shops and restaurants operate full opening hours.

Still not sure where to stay?


Monthly Weather in Bude

Best Hotels in Bude

  • The Beach at Bude Bude 18 rooms from £105

    Contemporary  -  Farrow & ball hues, an atmospheric bar that feels like a members club, and coastal chic style make this a great boutique choice
    Active Holiday  -  Whether sea activities, cycling, or hiking is your thing - there is plenty to keep busy with here
    Surfing  -  Situated right above Summerleaze Beach, this is a prime spot for surfers
    Restaurant  -  The Beach Restaurant is headed up by highly acclaimed chef Jamie Colman who trained with Gordon Ramsay and Michael Caines
    RestaurantViewsNo pets
    Recommended by  -  Good Hotel Guide, Sawdays

    A stylish boutique bolthole overlooking a popular surf beach. light and airy rooms are contemporary and fresh with pastel hues, pale wooden furniture, and sea views. The laidback restaurant serves modern British cuisine and there's a vibey bar too. A hip coastal getaway. See More

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