Tamar Lakes

Tamar Lakes

Near Bude, EX23 9SB
Tel: (01288) 321712
Email: infoswlakestrust.org.uk
Web: www.swlakestrust.org.uk/tamar
Web: www.visitcornwall.com/things-to-do/family-attractions/tamar-lakes

Tranquil lakes almost at the source of the Tamar

The brand new water-sports centre at Upper Tamar offers sailing, windsurfing and kayaking for individuals, families and groups. Visitors can benefit from tuition from our qualified instructors, hire equipment or launch their own craft. The peaceful camp-site is an ideal base for exploring North Cornwall and is perfect for families, groups and couples.

The Lower Tamar Lake was constructed in 1819 to be used as the mains water supply for Bude and as a water supply for the Bude Canal but was considered unsafe and lowered to become a nature reserve. This resulted in the Upper Tamar Lake being opened in 1977 and is approximately 75 acres in extent. The lakes are almost at the source of the River Tamar.

Walking at Tamar Lakes

Encounter nature face to face by following way-marked walks around the shorelines of the two lakes. The circular route around Upper Tamar Lake is approximately three miles, and provides a great pathway or a lakeside walk.

The popular round lake walk takes about one hour, and there is also a children's play area and plenty of space for informal games. Adjacent to the Centre is a camp-site which caters for holidaymakers and water-sports participants alike. Coarse anglers will also enjoy this attractive lake, and day permits are available from the fishing kiosk on site.

At Lower Tamar you will find a much smaller lake with easy going footpaths. The Lower Lake is predominantly managed as a nature reserve as it is popular with many wildfowl. There is a bird hide open to all and several picnic tables.

Both lakes have their own car parks and linking footpaths creating longer walks. The Bude Aqueduct Walk starts and finishes at Lower Tamar Lake and a trail leaflet is available from the cafe, or Bude Visitor Centre.


The Tamar Lake Cafe overlooking the lake offers a variety of light lunches, cakes and beverages and a visit to the Visitor Centre will tell you about the lake, its ecology and the walks.


Sign-posted from the B3254 near Kilkhampton five miles north-east of Bude.

Opening Times

All Year

Admission Free

Bude       Bude Visitor Centre       Bude Canal       Kilkhampton Castle       Tamara Way

Cornwall's Wildlife       Cornwall's Lakes & Reservoirs