Best restaurants in St Ives

The scenic Cornish town of St Ives is no stranger to fabulous restaurants, which provide holiday goers with a delicious meal and refreshing drinks at the end of a long day of strolling through the area’s numerous art galleries or lounging around on the pristine beaches. The best St Ives restaurants are undoubtedly the ones making the most of the area’s supply of fresh seafood, but there is something for everyone here. Don’t want to take our word for it? Read on to discover St Ives restaurants which cater to carnivores, vegetarians, vegans, children and everyone in between.

Updated on 27 July 2021

“As I was going to St. Ives, I met a man with seven wives…” goes the famous nursery rhyme. While we cannot guarantee that you will run into any polygamists on your trip to this fishing village turned tourist hotspot, we can say with some confidence that you will at least stumble across a restaurant or two that will tick all of your boxes. St Ives may be best known for its scenic beaches and uber cool art galleries, but the town is also home to a truly electric restaurant scene. The title of the best restaurant in St Ives is a hotly contested one, with local residents and tourists alike spoilt for choice when it comes to where to head for dinner.

As expected, the majority of St Ives restaurants champion seafood that has caught in the local area and serve up delightful fish suppers alongside classic British puddings and carefully considered wine lists. It is not all about fish here though, with plenty of the best St Ives restaurants also serving up the likes of steaks and burgers. To decide where you will dine on your next trip to Cornwall, check out our pick below of the best St Ives restaurants below.

Talay Thai Kitchen

Talay Thai Kitchen

Wharf Road, St Ives, Cornwall, TR26 1LF

Fragrant plates of Thai curries and small sharing starters keep this place packed out in summer when holiday makers crave a change from seafood. With a first floor dining room there are great views to be had too. 

Under £30
Thai
Porthminster Kitchen

Porthminster Kitchen

Porthminster Kitchen Wharf Road, St. Ives, Cornwall, TR26 1LG

A sibling to the ever-popular Porthminster Beach Cafe, this smart restaurant offers an all-day menu which is underpinned by seasonal, local produce. 180 degree views of the harbour make for the perfect dining backdrop too.

£30 - £49
Modern European
Harbar at St Ives Harbour Hotel

Harbar at St Ives Harbour Hotel

The Terrace, St Ives, Cornwall, TR26 2BN

Forgive the punny name and allow yourself to be swept up by Harbar’s colourful interiors and terrace overlooking the ocean. As for food, expect seasonally changing dishes which make the most of Cornwall’s natural larder.

£30 - £49
British
Afternoon tea
Porthmeor Café

Porthmeor Café

Porthmeor Beach, St Ives, Hayle, Cornwall, TR26 1JZ

Come for the stunning alfresco beachside setting (perfect for watching the sunset) and stay for the menu of lively tapas which champions local produce. If you’re lucky, you might even spot a dolphin or two.

Under £30
Tapas
The Beach restaurant

The Beach restaurant

The Wharf, St Ives, Cornwall, TR26 1LG

Unpretentious and fairly priced, this family-run haunt has been thrilling locals and tourists alike since 1957. The accessible, crowd pleasing menu ranges from traditional fish and chips to hearty fish pies, plus indulgent desserts too.

Under £30
British
Fish
Rum and Crab Shack

Rum and Crab Shack

Wharf Road, St Ives, Cornwall, TR26 1LG

Take a rustic first floor dining room, buckets of wonderfully fresh crab and 100 different kinds of rum from all over the world, and it seems you have the recipe for a lively, fun restaurant.

£30 - £49
Fish
Porthminster Beach Café

Porthminster Beach Café

Porthminster Beach, St Ives, Cornwall, TR26 2EB

In a setting that wouldn’t look out of place on a postcard, this cafe offers panoramic views of St Ives Bay, and a menu which runs the gamut from fresh fish dishes to vegetarian options.

£30 - £49
Fish
Balancing Eel

Balancing Eel

10 Back Lane, St Ives, Cornwall, TR26 1LR

This chippy may have a quirky name, but everything else here is resolutely traditional. Expect a no-frills menu of high-quality fish suppers at reassuringly reasonable prices, while friendly service cements Balancing Ell as a must-try.

Under £30
British
Fish and Chips
Harbour View House St Ives

Harbour View House St Ives

Harbour View House , Saint Ives , TR26 2BH

Tucked away at the top of the town, this is one of St Ives' best kept secrets. The pared back dining room offers stunning views over the harbour, and the seasonal tapas is really very good.

£30 - £49
Tapas
Spanish
The Mermaid

The Mermaid

21 Fish Street , St Ives , Cornwall, TR26 1LT

That rare restaurant which works for both date night and family dinners, The Mermaid is a long-standing St Ives staple which impresses with its menu of locally caught fresh seafood and well considered wine list.

£30 - £49
British
Fish
Source Kitchen

Source Kitchen

6 The Digey, St Ives, TR26 1HR

Found on The Digey, one of St Ives’ most famous and most beautiful streets, Source Kitchen’s reliably good seasonally changing menu turns out freshly-baked pastries in the morning followed by delectable sharing plates come nightfall.

£30 - £49
British
Fish
Custom House Pizza St Ives

Custom House Pizza St Ives

The Old Customs House, Saint Ives, Cornwall, TR26 1LF

With both eat in and takeaway options, you can either enjoy a bite to eat in the dining room or take your pizza out to enjoy it on the beach al fresco. Toppings like pork shoulder, pineapple and jalapeno are a nice change from the usual. 

Under £30
Pizza
The Seafood Cafe

The Seafood Cafe

45 Fore St, St Ives , Cornwall, TR26 1HE

Doing what it says on the tin, this deceptively large dining room serves up some of the finest fish dishes in St Ives. There’s a kids menu too, so it’s suitable for all the family.

£30 - £49
British
Fish
Loft Restaurant and Terrace

Loft Restaurant and Terrace

Norway Lane , St Ives, Cornwall, TR26 1LZ

Boasting a stunning terrace with views across the bay, The Loft is popular with locals and visitors alike. The menu is unpretentious yet sophisticated, while a children’s menu and veggie options ensure all feel welcome.

£30 - £49
British
One Fish Street

One Fish Street

1 Fish Street, St Ives, Cornwall, TR26 1LT

This imaginative fine-dining restaurant has a fish focus, and uses the very best of the bay to keep diners well fed. Dishes have an international lean. Think hand dived Orkney scallop with rare breed pork.

£50 - £79
Fish
Porthgwidden Beach Café

Porthgwidden Beach Café

Porthgwidden, St. Ives, Cornwall, TR26 1PL

Forget sand covered sandwiches in your beach picnic and instead opt for this beachside restaurant. Coastal chic interiors are supported by serene views and a menu of seafood dishes which borrows from the global larder.

Under £30
British
Fish
Blas Burgerworks

Blas Burgerworks

The Warren, Hayle, Cornwall, TR26 2EA

This St Ives mainstay defies all ‘greasy burger joint’ expectations with its fastidiously sourced beef, hand-cut chips, indulgent desserts and plentiful vegetarian and vegan options. Who ever said ‘dude food’ had to be low quality?

Under £30
Burgers
Firehouse Bar & Grill St Ives

Firehouse Bar & Grill St Ives

27 Fore Street, St Ives, Cornwall, R26 1AB

Sometimes you just want a decent steak or a big plate of fish and chips, and it's here that Firehouse Bar & Grill delivers. Bag a seat at one of the windows for great views of the harbour. 

£30 - £49
Pizza
North American
Steak
Bars
Fish and Chips
The Searoom

The Searoom

1 Wharf House, St Ives, Cornwall, TR26 1PG

This stylish joint puts a Cornish twist on the Spanish staple of tapas (think lots of seafood), as well as serving quaffable cocktails late into the night. Earmark this place for your next date night.

Under £30
Tapas
British
International
Cellar Bistro

Cellar Bistro

29-31 Fore Street , St Ives, Cornwall, TR26 1HE

Less beachside cool and more Parisian chic, this cosy subterranean restaurant is a great choice for a romantic supper, set against the backdrop of fish caught that same day, plus other classics like sirloin steak.

£30 - £49
British
Bistro
The Gurnard

The Gurnard's Head

Treen, St Ives, Cornwall, TR26 3DE

This secluded restaurant is testament to the premise that if food is good, crowds will come in droves. Expect globally inspired pub grub that is a far cry from your typical pint and pork pie.

£30 - £49
British
Gastropub
Little Palais

Little Palais

Location & Hours Little Palais , Saint Ives, TR26 1AD

Relaxed yet atmospheric, Little Palais sells top-notch wine, artisanal cocktails and a small menu of cheese and charcuterie plates and nibbly sharing bits. Ask for pairing recommendations too, the staff are always happy to oblige. 

£30 - £49
Bars
Wine Bars

With its famous galleries and gardens, as well as a clutch of sheltered coves, St Ives really is a special little piece of Cornwall. While the culture and landscape are the obvious draws, the best restaurants in St Ives also hold a pretty strong pull, with out of towners often found wandering around looking for a bite to eat on pleasant summer evenings. Our advice? Get in early with your booking reservations, to make sure you secure some of the best seats for your trip. 

Once you’ve tackled our list of the best restaurants in St Ives, you might be hungry for more. Want to explore more of Cornwall’s restaurant scene? Check out the best restaurants in Padstow.