Talland Bay Beach is actually a couple of pocket-sized twin coves located in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty midway between Looe and Polperro. Don’t let its size fool you, though, as this is a small package with plenty to offer. In days gone by, smugglers were lured here by the bay’s seclusion but the often calm waters also hold tales of misfortune with the remnants of the stricken French steam trawler Marguerite visible at low tide.
For today’s visitors, the western side, Talland Sand, is covered with shingly sand at both high and low tides. The eastern side, Rotterdam Beach, instead gives way to masses of rock pools that sprawl out to the sea at low tide. Because of its sheltered position, these rock and large tidal pools make it a family favourite with both tourists and locals looking to escape the crowds at south coast summer hotspots like East Looe Beach.
Talland Bay Beach, which is part of the Gribbin Head-Polperro Heritage Coast, is also a great place to explore the waters off this tranquil stretch of coastline in safety. Snorkellers and swimmers enjoy the crystal clear waters that the rocky bottom provides, although care should be taken as there’s no lifeguard cover here. The twisty-turny nature of this section of coast also makes it a popular hotspot with stand up paddleboarders who come here to explore the small coves around the beach. There’s also a small boat launch on the main beach, so expect plenty of activity out on the water.
Talland can easily be reached from both Looe and Polperro on the South West Coast Path but there’s plenty of facilities at the beach to keep families in situ for a day. Cute coffee shops and car parks serve the bay well. Smuggle the little ones on to the beach for an afternoon. Just make sure you bring that sun lotion if it’s hot as you don’t want to end up a wreck like the Marguerite…