Newquay is the top surfing destination in the UK and attracts over one million visitors every year. The town is famed for its nightlife as much as its beaches and within this post, you’ll find a selection of the best bars in Newquay (and the best pubs in Newquay too of course).
Table of Contents
- Best Bars in Newquay
- 1. Tom Thumb Cocktail Bar (Best Bar in Newquay Overall)
- 2. The Red Lion (Best for Cozy Atmosphere, Real Ale, and Food)
- 3. Whiskers (Best for Live Music and Partying)
- 4. The Sailors Arms (Best for Food, Clubbing, and Partying)
- 5. Wax Activity Bar (Best for Fun Activities While You Drink)
- 6. Fistral Beach Bar (Best for Beach Vibes)
- 7. Dead Famous Liquor Lounge and Grill (Best for Food & Live Music)
- 8. The Bowgie Inn (Best for Sea Views)
- 9. Toast Wine Bar (Best for Tapas and Wine)
- 10. Walkabout (Best for Cheap Drinks and a Lively Atmosphere)
- 11. Berties Nightclub (Best for Partying Until Dawn)
- 12. The Mermaid Inn (Best for Beachfront Food and Drink)
- 13. Basement Bar (Best for a Chilled Out Atmosphere)
- 14. Cave (Best for Atmosphere)
- 15. The Watering Hole in Polperro (Best for the Views)
- Newquay Bars and Pubs FAQs
- To Summarize
I’ve been enjoying the town’s nightlife and live music in Newquay ever since I was old enough to drink (the legal drinking age is 18 in the UK). It’s one of the best places in the country to party ’til dawn after days spent relaxing or surfing at the beach.
It’s easy to find a place for a drink in Newquay with so many great bars, pubs, and clubs all within walking distance of the beach.
Whether you’re looking for a gin palace, a traditional pub, live music, or a nightclub, there’s something to suit everyone’s preference.
Best Bars in Newquay
I’ve compiled this list based on my own personal experiences and customer reviews, so you don’t just have to take my word for it. I’ve spent many hours sampling Newquay’s nightlife and am happy to share this tough but needed research with you – someone has to do it!
With everything from colorful cocktails to Cornish ale on offer, you’ll be sure to find the perfect drink and the perfect place to enjoy it, in this comprehensive guide.
You’ll find beach bars, wine bars, activity bars, and gastropubs alongside more traditional drinking establishments.
1. Tom Thumb Cocktail Bar (Best Bar in Newquay Overall)
Tom Thumb is a Newquay icon and recipient of the 2022 Travelers’ Choice Awards. This stylish bar in the center of Newquay has been serving up classic cocktails along with its own signature mixes since opening in 2016.
If you’re looking for fun bars in Newquay then don’t miss Tom Thumbs. The bar is always lively with a youngish crowd of locals and visiting surfers during the summer months.
Be sure to try one of their original cocktails such as the aptly named Harbour Master; a mix of rum, chia, coconut, and banana with sherry and maple syrup. The fruity Mango No5 is also another must-try.
Tom Thumb Cocktail Bar Info
Address: 27A East Street Newquay, TR7 1DN
Phone: +44 (0)1637 498180
Operating Hours: 3 pm-11:30 pm, Tue-Sat
Must-Try Items: The Harbour Master, Mango No5, Old Maui
Average Cost: £7.50-£15.00 per cocktail
2. The Red Lion (Best for Cozy Atmosphere, Real Ale, and Food)
The Red Lion is one of my favorite places in Newquay for a pint of real Cornish ale (St Austell’s flagship Tribute) and is a great place to grab a bit to eat for lunch or dinner. This is a proper pub with a warm welcome in charming surroundings right next to the harbor.
If you’re looking for simple, reasonably priced food then you can’t go wrong. The chefs use the freshest local ingredients, including locally caught fish, and serve a selection of pub classics and British and European cuisine.
If you’re just looking for a drink, then the Red Lion won’t disappoint. It has a well-stocked bar that serves up beers, wines, ciders, and cocktails at affordable prices. There’s also a pool table and outside seating overlooking the harbor.
The Red Lion Info
Address: N Quay Hill, Newquay, Cornwall, TR7 1HE
Phone: +44 (0)1637 872195
Operating Hours: 11 am-11 pm, Mon-Thu, 11 am-12 am, Fri-Sat, 12 pm-11 pm, Sun
Must-Try Items: Sunday roast, St Austell Tribute
Average Cost: £4-£5 per pint, $15-£20 per main, $5 for desserts
3. Whiskers (Best for Live Music and Partying)
Whiskers is one of the top-rated bars in Newquay on Tripadvisor and bills itself as the best live music bar in the southwest (it’s hard to disagree after its massive 2021 renovation).
Whiskers has everything from an open mic night (Mondays) to DJs, rock, metal, reggae, and much more.
The bar attracts a crowd of all ages, usually dependent on what’s on, and is one of my go-to places for a night out in Newquay. The bar is in central Newquay, just a short walk from Towan beach.
Whiskers serves a standard selection of beers, wines, ciders, and cocktails, but the music and atmosphere are the reasons to pay a visit.
Address: 5-7 Gover Lane, Newquay, Cornwall, TR7 1ER
Operating Hours: 8 pm-2 am, Mon, 8 pm-2 am, Fri-Sat
Must-Try Items: Come here for the music
Average Cost: £5 per pint
4. The Sailors Arms (Best for Food, Clubbing, and Partying)
The Sailors Arms is a Newquay institution and is a great mixture of a pub, restaurant, and nightclub all in one. In the afternoon/evening you can enjoy a drink and dine on the terrace overlooking the harbor and Towan beach.
As the sun sets, head inside to the large dancefloor to party until the small hours. This is one of my favorite nightspots in Newquay as it has it all; great food, pristine views, and an awesome party atmosphere.
The menu includes a mouthwatering selection of stonebaked pizzas, handmade burgers, comfort food favorites like mac n’ cheese, and a lot more besides. They also do an amazing full English breakfast for under £10.00 which you’ll struggle to better anywhere else in Newquay.
The Sailors Arms Info
Address: 11-17 Fore Street, Newquay, Cornwall, TR7 1HB
Phone: +44 (0)1637 872838
Operating Hours: 12 pm-1 am, Mon-Tue, 12 pm-2 am, Wed, 12 pm-3 am, Thu-Fri, 12 pm-4 am, Sat, 12 pm-2 am, Sun
Must-Try Items: cocktails, full English breakfast
Average Cost: £5-£6 per pint, £12-£18 per main
5. Wax Activity Bar (Best for Fun Activities While You Drink)
Activity bars are a new craze bringing together a fun evening of drinking alongside activities like escape rooms, axe throwing (thankfully no alcohol is permitted before or during this experience), and the more traditional (interactive) darts.
There are four dedicated axe-throwing lanes and the cost is £15 per person for an hour’s session with a qualified instructor.
The escape rooms include a prison-escape room, a dark mine (Cornwall is famed for its old tin mines), and the lock-in (escape from the pub, though I’m not sure why anyone would want to).
The escape rooms cost from £25 per person with a minimum of two people (it gets cheaper the more people you have). Interactive darts costs from £6 per hour. Oh, and there’s a cool bar that serves some awesome cocktails and Cornish lagers here too.
Wax Activity Bar Info
Address: 10 Central Square, Newquay, Cornwall, T7 1JB
Phone: +44 (0)1637 520901
Operating Hours: 4 pm-10 pm, Mon-Thu, 12 pm-12 am, Fri-Sat, 12 pm-10 pm, Sun
Must-Try Items: Cornish lagers, cocktails, bar snacks
Average Cost: £5 per pint, £8 per cocktail,
6. Fistral Beach Bar (Best for Beach Vibes)
This cool beach bar just off Fistral beach is one of the best bars in Newquay thanks to its great location overlooking the bay. It is open from 9 am and serves food all day from a full English breakfast to pizzas, burgers, and nachos for dinner.
Nothing makes me hungrier than swimming and surfing, and Fistral Beach Bar is usually one of my first stops after drying off. It’s also a great spot to enjoy a pint (make sure it’s Tribute), a glass of wine, or a cocktail and watch the sunset over Fistral.
Fistral Beach Bar Info
Address: Headland Road, Newquay, Cornwall, TR7 1HY
Phone: +44 (0)1637 879444
Operating Hours: 9 am-11 pm, Mon-Sun
Must-Try Items: Coffee, prosecco cocktails, Cornish pasties
Average Cost: £3 per coffee, £4-£6 for beers and ciders, £5 per pasty, £10-£15 for mains
7. Dead Famous Liquor Lounge and Grill (Best for Food & Live Music)
The Dead Famous is Newquay’s most rockin’ venue with live bands, DJs, and the best burgers in town. Located a stone’s throw from Towan beach, this is one of the best places to party in Newquay until the small hours.
Dead Famous is “dead famous” for its excellent handmade burgers with a musical twist. The Lemmy is made with slow-cooked brisket, Jack cheese, streaky bacon, and bourbon sauce (the big man would be proud). Or how about the Firestarter crammed with jalapenos and Mexican cheeses?
If you’re looking for somewhere classy to enjoy the best burgers in town and some inventive cocktails (Should I Stay or Should I Mojito), this is the place to be.
Dead Famous Liquor Lounge Info
Address: 8-10 Beach Road, Newquay, Cornwall, TR7 1ES
Phone: +44 (0)1637 873415
Operating Hours: 8 pm-3 am, Fri-Sat
Must-Try Items: The Lemmy Burger, Firestarter Burger, Old Fashioned Rock n’ Roll cocktail
Average Cost: £8.95 per cocktail, £10-15 per main
8. The Bowgie Inn (Best for Sea Views)
If you’re looking for the best views of all the pubs and bars in Newquay, then you won’t be left disappointed by the Bowgie Inn. With a garden terrace on the cliffs overlooking Pentire Bay and the Gannel Estuary, this is definitely one of the best pubs near Newquay for the views.
You’ll find a great selection of local tipples here from St Austell Brewery, Healey’s Cyder Farm, Skinners, Camel Valley Wines, and many more.
The Bowgie prides itself on an exciting menu using fresh, Cornish ingredients and offers first-class pub classics and contemporary European cuisines. Tables must be booked in advance via the website.
The Bowgie Inn Info
Address: West Pentire Road, West Pentire, Newquay, Cornwall, TR8 5SE
Phone: +44 (0)1637 830363
Operating Hours: 12 pm-6 pm, Mon-Sun
Must-Try Items: Sweet chili tuna steak, quiche,
Average Cost: $2-$4 per latte, £10-15 per main, £5 for cakes and desserts
9. Toast Wine Bar (Best for Tapas and Wine)
Tapas always reminds me of the sea, having enjoyed it on my many trips to Andalusia over the years. Toast Wine and Tapas Bar reflects this perfectly with a mouth-watering selection of traditional and contemporary dishes, as well as some of the best wines from Cornwall and beyond.
This family-run establishment serves tapas daily from 6:30 pm until 9 pm, and cocktails and other drinks until 11:30 pm.
Be sure to try out some of the local ales on offer from breweries such as Skinners and St Austell (you can’t go wrong with a pint of Tribute).
Toast Wine Bar Info
Address: 12a Central Square, Newquay, Cornwall, TR7 1EU
Phone: +44 (0)1637 871252
Operating Hours: 5 pm-11:30 pm, Tue-Sat
Must-Try Items: Chorizo in red wine, patatas bravas, strawberry daiquiri
Average Cost: £8 per cocktail, £6-£7 per glass of wine, £3-£7 per tapas dish
10. Walkabout (Best for Cheap Drinks and a Lively Atmosphere)
Cornwall has many similarities with Australia from surfing to winemaking (thankfully these similarities do not extend to the marine life) and so it’s with little surprise that the ubiquitous Aussie hangout, the Walkabout, has made an appearance here.
If you’re looking to watch sports, play pool, get tipsy on good drinks, and generally have a great night out, then Walkabout is the place to go (it also makes the perfect starting point before hitting some of the town’s other nightspots).
Address: The Crescent, Newquay, Cornwall, TR7 1DS
Phone: +44 (0)1637 853000
Operating Hours: 11 am-11 pm, Mon-Thu, 11 am-1 am, Fri, 11 am-2 am, Sat, 11 am-12 am, Sun
Must-Try Items: Burgers, breakfasts, Old Mout Cider
Average Cost: £7 per cocktail, £10-£15 per main
11. Berties Nightclub (Best for Partying Until Dawn)
Berties is Cornwall’s best and largest nightclub and the place to go if you want to party and dance the night away.
This is definitely one of the best clubs in Newquay for lovers of dance music and you’ll find resident and guest DJs spinning everything from drum and bass to techno, house, and more.
You’ll find a youngish crowd in Berties and the nights can get pretty wild. This is a great place to get glammed up and enjoy a lively evening with top DJs, great tunes, and some fantastic deals on drinks.
Berties Nightclub Info
Address: East Street, Newquay, Cornwall, TR7 1DB
Phone: +44 (0)1637 872255
Operating Hours: 9 am-11 pm, Mon-Thu, 10 pm-3 am, Fri-Sat
Must-Try Items: If you’re feeling brave, try the Shamrock Juice!
Average Cost: £5-£8 per beer, £8-£12 per cocktail
12. The Mermaid Inn (Best for Beachfront Food and Drink)
The Mermaid Inn is located in the northern suburb of Porth. This is one of the most fun pubs in Newquay for its weekly quiz nights, live music, and stunning beachside location. This is a family-friendly pub and welcomes well-behaved dogs.
On Sundays, the Mermaid hosts a sumptuous carvery from 12:00 pm, and food from the full menu is served daily from 12:00 pm until 9:00 pm.
You’ll find everything from light bites such as sandwiches and jacket potatoes to salads, pasta, and fish and chips (I recommend the fish tacos).
The Mermaid Inn Info
Address: Alexander Court, Porth, Newquay, Cornwall, TR7 3NB
Phone: +44 (0)1637 872954
Operating Hours: 11 am-11 pm, Mon-Sun
Must-Try Items: Sunday carvery, fish tacos,
Average Cost: £11.95 for the carvery, £10-£15 per main, £4-£6 per drink
13. Basement Bar (Best for a Chilled Out Atmosphere)
The Basement Bar is located underneath Bertie’s Nightclub (see above) but is a lot more relaxed with stylish wooden decor, sumptuous cocktails, and a great selection of beers, ciders, and wines on offer.
The bar is in a central location close to Great Western beach and attracts a mixed, older crowd so it’s not as lively as the club upstairs, which is great if you are looking for somewhere to chill with a few drinks.
There’s an extensive drinks menu serving a range of cocktails, Cornish beers, Cornish ciders, wines, and spirits. Prices are reasonable given the location and sophistication of this great little bar.
Basement Bar Info
Address: East Street, Newquay, Cornwall, TR7 1DB
Phone: +44 (0)1637 872255
Operating Hours: 8 pm-12 am, Mon-Sun
Must-Try Items: Cocktails, Cornish beers
Average Cost: £8 per cocktail, £5 per beer
14. Cave (Best for Atmosphere)
Cave is one of the hottest new bars in Newquay where the town’s hippest crowd gathers to dance and drink the night away. With lots of deals on shots and bombs, the drinks will be flowing all night long.
You’ll get to listen to an eclectic mix of music from dance and house to R n’ B. Cave has a lively atmosphere and is popular with a younger crowd. There are lots of different club nights on throughout the summer so keep your eyes peeled for flyers around the town.
Address: 9 Central Square, Newquay, Cornwall, TR7 1JH
Operating Hours: 10 am-3 am, Fri-Sat
Must-Try Items: Jbomb, Agwa Bomb
Average Cost: £2.50 per shot and bomb
15. The Watering Hole in Polperro (Best for the Views)
The Watering Hole in nearby Perranporth (8 miles from Newquay) claims it is the only true beach bar in the UK (it’s actually on the beach). Perranporth makes a great day trip from Newquay and no trip to this surfers’ paradise is complete without visiting the Watering Hole.
With live music on offer, a fantastic menu of Mexican dishes, pub favorites, and views to die for, this is one of my favorite places in Cornwall to grab a drink and watch the sunset.
With St Austell beers on tap plus a wide range of ciders, wines, and cocktails, it’s the perfect place to unwind after a day at the beach.
The Watering Hole Info
Address: 19 St Pirans Road, Perranporth, Cornwall, TR6 0BH
Phone: +44 (0)1637 572888
Operating Hours: 9 am-11 pm, Mon-Sun
Must-Try Items: Fajitas, full English breakfast, St Austell Tribute
Average Cost: £5-£8 per drink, £12-£15 per main
Newquay Bars and Pubs FAQs
Here are answers to popular questions about the best Bars in Newquay.
Tom Thumb is best for cocktails, the Red Lion is the best traditional Pub, the Bowgie Inn is best for views, and Whiskers is best for live music.
Tipping isn’t necessary or expected when buying drinks, but if you have a meal, a tip of 10% to 15% for excellent service and food is usual.
Newquay’s town center and the area around Towan beach offer the best bars, pubs, and nightclubs. As the town isn’t huge everywhere is within walking distance.
Newquay has lots of options for live music, the chief of these being Whiskers and Dead Famous Bar and Grill.
An average cocktail costs around £8.00 in Newquay. Look out for special deals and happy hours. Sometimes it’s also cheaper to buy a pitcher if there’s a group of you.
Beers in Newquay pubs cost from £4.00 to £5.00 per pint and £5.00 to £6.00 for premium bottled beers.
Newquay has fantastic nightlife with many people flocking to its bars, pubs, and clubs after spending the day at the beach.
Most clubs in Newquay shut at 3:00 am during the weekend and slightly earlier during the week (though the Sailors Arms is open until 4:00 am on Saturdays).
Now you know about the best bars and pubs in Newquay, which one would you like to try first? The town is famed for its excellent nightlife and with so many different places to choose from you’re sure of a top night out on the town.
Be sure to check out my favorite, the Red Lion for a proper Cornish pub experience, and of course Fistral Beach Bar for the cool vibes and Bowgie’s for the sumptuous views. I can’t wait to get back to Newquay to hit the waves and kick back in its top bars and pubs.