Buying Tickets to Looe
Liskeard to Looe£
Off-Peak Day Return. Valid after the morning peak, and anytime weekends or Bank Holidays.
Please note: On Saturday 20th and Saturday 27th March engineering work means replacement buses will run on the Looe Valley Line. Find out more: GWR.com/east-cornwall
Visit the beautiful seaside town of Looe in South East Cornwall, sometimes known as the county’s forgotten corner.
The town, which prospered from the fishing industry and latterly tourism, is actually split into two towns, East and West Looe, and separated by the East Looe River.
East Looe is the busier of the two and has plenty of narrow back lanes with quaint cottages rubbing shoulders with independent shops of all shapes and sizes.
The best way to visit is on the scenic Looe Valley Line. This lovely branch line begins from the market town in Liskeard and winds its way through the heavily wooded valley until the final two miles which see the views completely open out over the estuary.
This last two miles is an excellent opportunity to spot some of the local birdlife which includes little egrets, oyster catchers, curlew and kingfishers (although blink and you’ll miss them!).
From Looe station, turn right and take the 10-minute walk into town. It’s a further 5 minutes down to the beach. See map.
On a sunny day head straight for the town beach and banjo pier.
This is a safe sandy beach with shops, cafes and amenities close by as well as the Admiral Boscarn pub with its large roof terrace. The beach gets busy in summer so if the weather is good, it is best to get there early.
If it isn’t beach weather there is more than enough to occupy you for a day.
Head into East Looe and get yourself a pasty from the award winning Sarah’s Pasty Shop. This pasty shop is housed in the smallest of buildings in one of East Looe’s back streets but it is worth seeking out as the pasties are out of this world.
Staff make the pasties in front of you, from traditional steak to mackerel and horseradish!
Armed with your pasty, head towards the harbour and here you will find the ferry that connects East and West Looe (the ferry doesn’t run when the tide is out but you can walk around to West Looe via the bridge).
Hop on and travel across the river and of you have time, it is well worth popping into the Old Sardine Factory heritage centre where you can explore the maritime and fishing heritage of Looe.
From West Looe you can walk the short but steep walk up to Hannafore. This mainly residential area is home to the Hannafore Point Hotel. The views across the whole of the bay and over Looe Island are stunning and on a clear day you can see for miles.
Looe Island, also known as St George’s Island, is a nature reserve which you can visit on boat trips from East Looe. The island was inhabited by people as far back as the Iron Age, and at one time was a site for early Christian pilgrimages.
The Island’s most colourful history was throughout the 17th and 18th centuries when it was used by smugglers. There is more on the history of the Island and smuggling in the town in the excellent Old Guildhall Museum in East Looe.
Head down towards the end of Hannafore and you will eventually find a gate that leads into a field and this is where you can access the South West Coast Path. Wander a while, find a bench and enjoy your pasty or if you are feeling fit and keen you can walk the 6 miles to the quaint village of Polperro along the coast path.
The walk is strenuous in places but you will be rewarded with stunning views out to sea and glimpses of deserted coves where you can picture the smugglers of the past. Polperro itself (shown) is picturesque too.
If you do opt to do the whole walk, there is a bus in Polperro that will take you back into Looe at the end of your day before you catch the train back to Liskeard.
Forgot the hassle of parking in Looe. Instead come by train on the scenic Looe Valley Line.
This begins at Liskeard which is on the Cornish main line.
Latest travel advice (5th Jan 2021)
Under the new national lockdown “you must not leave your home unless you have a reasonable excuse (for example, for work or education purposes)”. See full information.
If you need to travel, face coverings must be worn on public transport and in indoor spaces at stations unless you are exempt. If you can, please buy your ticket online on the GWR app or website. Please also remember to wash your hands and use social distancing. Read more on GWR’s Coronavirus advice page.
From Looe station it is a 10-minute walk into town or 15 minutes to the beach.
See town map.
Liskeard is an ancient Cornish market town located on the southern edge of Bodmin Moor. The town prospered with the mining boom in the 19th century and has lots of fine buildings designed by the architect Henry Rice. Whilst Liskeard isn’t necessarily a tourist destination there are some interesting shops, museums and cafes to explore as well as an interesting walk which explores some of the industrial heritage of the area.
Causeland is the station for the pretty village of Duloe (a 1.3 mile walk). The village is best known for its stone circle and its excellent pub, The Plough.