Par Beach to Eden Project

A relatively easy start to this 4-mile trail, however there is a steep final ascent to the Eden Project. This route offers varied scenery, from the coastline through the clay villages and on to the Eden Project.
Map of the route from Par beach to the Eden Project

Directions and points of interest

The route begins at Par Beach, where you can see tall clay-drying chimneys at the nearby docks billowing white clouds of steam into the sky. China clay is still shipped from this 19th-century built port across the world.

Walkers should start at Par Beach car park and turn right onto the beach, taking a flat route through the sand dunes or the adjacent road where you will pass the china clay sculpture. Follow this route for 0.5 mile, before turning right into another small car park where the Clay Trails begin (also an alternative to the start of this Trail). Cyclists should start the route from this point, to avoid the stretch along the beach.

Head away from the sea taking the smaller path, then at the granite boulder turn left following the path through a woodland area. At the T junction turn left, as marked by the National Cycle Network blue sign. Go through the gates, crossing the small private road and continue along the path until it meets Par Green Road.

Cyclists should turn left onto Par Green, then right onto Moorland Road. Walkers should turn left, cross over the road, then take a cut-through on the right between two houses, which pops out onto Moorland road.

Take the next left and continue through the recreation ground, following the path towards Par train station. At the station continue on the path keeping the railway tracks to your left. The path narrows and brings you onto the bridge opposite the Royal Inn.

Turn left and go over the bridge then re-join the off-road path to the left.

For an extension to the route from the Royal Inn turn up Eastcliffe Road and into the village of Tywardreath, the setting for Daphne Du Maurier’s novel The House on the Strand. You will need to retrace your journey back to the Royal Inn to continue on this trail. 

Head through the nature reserve, with a stream running on your left, then a lake on your right. The path is clearly marked with blue National Cycle Network signs. After the lake the path veers round to the left, continuing through a wooded area, then an open area. The reed beds and lagoons of the nature reserve are home to diverse wildlife. Keep an eye out for kingfishers, lapwings, buzzards, kestrels and reed warblers. Rare plants include pyramidal orchids, meadow foxtail and Cornish moneywort.

Once you reach the river turn right and carry on until you reach the road. Here, turn left and cross over to the other side, then pick up the path again on the right following the river. Once you have passed the football stadium turn left off the path and onto Station Road. At the T junction turn right, bringing you to the junction with Fore Street, St Blazey, where walkers and cyclists diverge.

Walkers should cross over the road at Fore street and walk up Duke Street, which runs to the left of the church. At the end of the road continue on up the steep footpath which turns into a sunken path. Follow the path until you reach a gate and a field. Walk along the bottom of the field and, after about ¼ of a mile, exit the field via a gate on your right. Turn left, joining the cycle route, and continue up the road.

Cyclists should turn right at the traffic lights, along Fore Street. Take the third left onto Cornhill road and continue uphill for approximately ¾ mile.

At the top of the road both walkers and cyclists reach a T junction. Turn right, cross over the road and then go left, following the Clay Trails sign to the Eden Project. Continue downhill towards Tregrehan, passing some cottages on your right. At the bottom of the incline turn right (signposted to Eden Project), which takes you to an off-road track leading down to the Eden Project.

Follow the signed route for the ticket entrance to Eden – where walkers and cyclists get a discounted entry price – or join the other Clay Trails to Wheal Martyn or Bugle.

Extending the route

For a shorter, flatter route (just over 2 miles), end your walk or cycle at St Blazey, where there is limited on-street parking. (OS grid reference SX069548). First’s 27 bus route and Western Greyhound’s 525 bus route connect St Blazey with St Austell.


Facilities and attractions


  • Eden Project

    Cafe and shop available outside pay perimeter. Also available: bike racks, lockers and toilets with baby changing facilities.
  • Snowland Angling Centre

    Snowland Angling Centre has a daytime cafe set around two lakes which are home to a variety of bird life.
  • Royal Inn, Par

    Serving hot food and local ales.
  • Boslowen B&B

    The owners of this B&B actively welcome walkers and cyclists are are knowledgeable about the local area.

Suitable for:

  • Walking
  • Cycling


4.0 miles (6.4km)


Both the walking and cycling versions of this route include a steep incline. Terrain includes woodland paths, some sections of public road/pavement and for walkers - sand dunes.

Cycling grade:



  • Sweeping views of the coastline and the Eden Project
  • The tranquillity of Par Nature Reserve
  • Sunken wooded paths for walkers
  • Peaceful country lanes for cyclists
Map references and transport

Start point: 

  • Address: Par Beach, Par, Cornwall, PL24 2AR
  • OS grid reference: SX085533
  • GPS coordinates: 50.347316,-4.6904

End point: 

  • Address: Eden Project, Bodelva, Cornwall, PL24 2SG
  • OS grid reference: SX049550
  • GPS coordinates: 50.357933,-4.742661


There are several pay and display car parks at Par Beach and car parks at the Eden Project.

Public transport: 

Par has a main line train station with frequent trains from London to Penzance. It also serves the Newquay branch line, connecting up with many of the smaller towns in Cornwall. See rail timetables.

First’s bus route 101 connects St Austell train station with Eden Project. See the full timetable.