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Getting onto the River Tamar from Cotehele Quay

Canadian canoes on Pont Pill in the Fowey estuary, Cornwall.
Canoe on the river | © National Trust Images/John Millar

Not only is Cotehele Quay a starting point to explore the many miles of footpaths around the Cotehele estate, the quay also provides an opportunity to get out onto the river for further adventures. Here you’ll find information on launch points, guidance for safe paddling and other opportunities to head out onto the water.

The River Tamar is tidal

Before you head out onto the River Tamar you should check the tide times for Cotehele Quay.

Water sports at Cotehele Quay

Canoe, kayak and paddleboard owners can launch from the slipways on Cotehele Quay. For small vessels, such as canoes, kayaks and paddleboards, we ask for a donation of £2 per vessel for use of the slipway. This can be paid by coins at the car park machine, or by card in The Edgcumbe or at the information point at the quay when open.

Be sure to park at the quay car park, use the pay and display machine, and carry your equipment on foot from there. If the quay is busy and there’s nowhere to park in the quay car park, please turn around and try again at a quieter time.

Don't forget to check the tide times for Cotehele Quay beforehand.

Booking in larger boats

If you have a larger boat, please book in advance to use the slipway. Email or call 01579 351346. For larger boats on a trailer the cost if £10 per vessel and cars and trailers must be parked in the overflow car park in the main car park.

Any boats and trailers that arrive without pre-booking will be turned away.

Misty morning light in November at the quay at Cotehele, Cornwall
Misty morning light at the quay at Cotehele, Cornwall | © National Trust Images/Tamsin Holmes

Canoe tours with Canoe Tamar

If you’re looking to get out onto the river but don’t own a canoe, Canoe Tamar host regular family canoe trips between April – September. They set off from the quay before heading towards the village of Calstock and into the wilds of the upper tidal limits.

Visit their website for timetables and booking information. Minimum age is 3 years old.

Cotehele Quay Gig Club

The Cotehele Quay Gig Club is a community rowing club based at the quay where they train and row recreationally. The club also enter many competitive events throughout the year, including the World Championships on the Scilly Isles.

Visit their website for more details on the club and for details on how to join.

Fishing at Cotehele

Fishing is not allowed on Cotehele Quay unless permission has been given. However, fishers are welcome to use the nearby Bohetherick Quay. Please follow government guidance on rod fishing bylaws and licences and remember to take any rubbish home with you.

Two visitors enjoying watersports on Derwent Water: one paddleboarding and one kayaking, Lake District
Kayak and paddleboard users on the river | © National Trust / Steve Barber

The Paddlers' Code

For top tips to make your paddling adventure more enjoyable, follow the Paddlers’ Code from British Canoeing to stay safe and help look after waterways.

Visitors exploring the garden in spring at Cotehele, Cornwall

Discover more at Cotehele

Find out when Cotehele is open, how to get here, the things to see and do and more.

The Quay on the Tamar River at dawn, at Cotehele, near Saltash, Cornwall

Exploring the Cotehele estate 

There's lots to discover at the Cotehele estate. Miles of pathways lead you through ancient woodland, past a historic chapel, and to an important Victorian quay.

Visitors looking at crafts within the Bull Pen Gallery at Cotehele

Eating and shopping at Cotehele 

Tuck into a cream tea at one of Cotehele’s cafés, find an eco-friendly gift or plant at the shop, and discover local artists at The Bull Pen Gallery.

Kayaking on Lake Windermere on New Years day at Fell Foot, Lake District, Cumbria

Best places to go kayaking and canoeing 

From open seas to meandering rivers and lakes, there are plenty of spots where you can kayak or canoe. Find the top places in our care for water sports.

Visitors exploring the rocks in the Owler Tor area of Longshaw, Burbage and the Eastern Moors, Derbyshire

Outdoor activities 

Searching for a new outdoor activity to try? Discover the best places in our care for outdoor activities, including off-road cycle tracks, walking trails and lakes and coastlines for water sports.

Person preparing their canoe on Windermere at Low Wray Campsite, Lake District

The Paddlers' Code 

For top tips to make your paddling adventure more enjoyable, follow the Paddlers' Code from British Canoeing to stay safe and help look after waterways