One of the major market towns in Cornwall and a gateway to the Camel Trail, Wadebridge now ranks as the third largest attraction in the county. A town with a largely central location, Wadebridge has a lot on offer for its visitors all year round irrespective of their ages and interests.
The earliest recorded mention of this town dates back to the year 1313 when Wade, a place then located within Pawton Manor, was granted a market and two fairs. Back then, the town was spread across two parishes located on either side of the Camel River, St. Breock and Egloshayle. Travellers were required to give thanks on either side at the end of a safe crossing and this is where the name Wadebridge first came into existence.
North Cornwall has a famous camel trail that winds its way between Wadebridge and Padstow along the estuary before running up to the hills of Blisland and Bodmin Moor. The scenery along this popular cycling and walking trail ranks among the most spectacular that visitors can expect to see in the UK.
The cycle route for the Camel Trail was planned on eleven miles of disused railway tracks that ran in the valley alongside River Camel. This was the original Atlantic Express route that ran from the Western countryside into London.
The Camel Trail serves as a link between the towns of Bodmin, Wadebridge, and Padstow. A branch line follows the river as it runs down from the rugged moorlands and village landscapes down to the wooded valleys of Blisland before entering the picturesque Camelford market town. Wadebridge stands at the centre of this Camel Trail and this is from where the majority of people choose to follow the route that gently slopes down towards Padstow.
Wadebridge has bike hire services for those who wish to take one of the cycling trails out of town. The route between Wadebridge and Padstow is almost level except for some gentle slopes. There are plenty of little coves along the way apart from other places that people can stop and admire, and also have a picnic in. A trip down the Camel Trail makes for an ideal time to be spent with the family.
For the keen walkers, Wadebridge makes for an ideal location. The more adventurous individuals can go down to Bodmin Moor which is no more than fifteen miles away and has many places of interest besides areas that offer a challenging walk. The town also stands on the famous Saints Way which is a cross-country path that runs over a length of sixteen miles. The Celtic Saints forged it in ancient times as a means of communication between Fowey and Padstow. A number of spectacular coastal walks can also be found within a few miles of the town of Wadebridge.
Wadebridge has developed a new and extensive sports centre that has a swimming pool thrown in to make it worthy of competing with the very best. A solarium, café, weights room, and squash courts are among other facilities included as part of the setup. The main hall is spacious enough and hosts numerous activities round the week.
Wadebridge town is also home to some of the best crafts shops and art galleries in Cornwall County. A visit to some of the craftspeople and artisans in North Cornwall will give tourists a glimpse of beautiful furniture, pottery, and vibrant landscapes.
The nearby village of Egloshayle has the famous public house that goes by the name of “The Earl of St. Vincent.” The building dates back to the 12th century when it was designed as a boarding house for the masons who were tasked with constructing the local church.
Prideaux Place in Padstow is another place worth visiting. This is a stunning manor house built in Elizabethan style and overlooks the picturesque fishing harbour in the region.
If you are looking for a one-stop address for fine dining in Wadebridge, look no further than the Rick Stein Restaurant. A place that was once a nightclub along the harbour frequented by people of the local Cornish fishing community was ripped apart and turned into seafood restaurant by Rick Stein, thus marking the start of a global brand. This place stands as the flagship of the thriving Rick Stein Empire and continues to be the heartthrob of the town.