Tresco, United Kingdom

About Us

Hi I’m Lisa. Welcome to Islandeering I’m an islandeer, author and marine conservationist and passionate about sharing what I have learnt from my travels around the islands of the British Isles to help you find an adventure. I started the project 12 years ago after I had one of those light bulb moments and realised the pure magic that islands held for me. After meeting so many people on their island travels who shared my passion and told me that I must share my experiences so that others could do the same I set up Islandeering.com, where we are passionate about promoting responsible travel to our great British islands.
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Join our Islandeering community

We have a lot of fun here, as we continuously find new islands and meet plenty of great folks along the way. Join our community to get new routes and adventures, latest blogs and news by using the email box below. Tune in also to our Facebook and Instagram pages to see where we are going next.
High Point: Beacon Hill, 44 metres
Population: 257
Size: 382 ha
Wild Factor: 7 out of 10

Overview of Tresco Renowned for its sophisticated vibe, beautiful beaches and world famous sub-tropical gardens the second largest island of Scilly, and the only one privately owned, has plenty of wild places to discover amongst the great cafes, pubs and luxury accommodation on offer. An island of many contrasts its exposed north coast is rugged with granite outcrops and heathland; whilst the east and south are mostly sand and shell beaches. Inland the freshwater pools are a birdwatchers paradise. The main settlements are New Grimsby and Old Grimsby on the west and east coasts respectively.

Type of island: inhabited

Location: Isle of Scilly

How to get to Tresco travel to St Mary’s on the Scillonian III from Penzance or Skybus flights from Lands End, Newquay and Exeter airports. Transfer to Tresco from the quay at St Mary’s via St Mary’s Boatmen’s Association https://www.scillyboating.co.uk) usually twice daily. Boats also arrive from St Martin’s and St Agnes on a less frequent basis. From Tresco the inter-island boat is run by Tresco Boat Services

Getting around Tresco everything on Tresco is within relatively short walking distance from New Grimsby quay. Tresco Estate offers a transfer service.

Best time to go to Tresco you can travel to the Isle of Scilly anytime of the year. Most visitors go between May to September, but Easter and October half terms can also be great often with good weather and fewer visitors. Spring time in Scilly is the best time to see the scented narcissi. The best time for birdwatching on Scilly is during the spring and autumn, with the large number of passing migrants.

Getting around Tresco there are public footpaths and lanes throughout the island

Is Tresco dog friendly dogs must be kept on a lead at all times everywhere on Tresco

Food and drink on Tresco there are some lovely cafes, inns, and restaurants as well as the well-stocked and upmarket Tresco Store. Our favourite is the wonderful Ruin Beach Cafe

Accommodation on Tresco the whole island is a holiday resort with a range of self-catering cottages and one hotel, The New Inn. No camping is available on Tresco

Contacts: all information about visiting Tresco at https://www.tresco.co.uk

What to do on Tresco 

Walk Tresco’s coastal path

Visit Tresco’s castles

Ruin Beach Cafe

Visit Abbey Gardens

Low tide event

Swim retreat on Tresco

Piper’s Hole

Nearby islands

Whilst you are there why note explore the following islands

St Mary’s

St Martin’s

St Agnes

Gugh

Bryher

St Mary’s

Samson

Nornour

St Helen’s

Teän

Annet

Walk Tresco's coastal path

Walk Tresco's delightful coast path to see magnificent beaches, castles and more

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Visit Tresco's castles

Visit Cromwell's Castle and King Charles's Castle

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Ruin Cafe Beach

Enjoy the best pizza on Scilly in this laid back beach cafe

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Visit Abbey Gardens

Visit Tresco's best known attraction

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Low tide event

Walk between Tresco and Bryher, the ultimate coastal walk

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Swim retreat on Tresco

Improve your stroke and confidence and reap the benefits of cold water swimming

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Piper's Hole

Go caving on Tresco and find the skeleton in the secret cave

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Tresco, United Kingdom

About Us

Hi I’m Lisa. Welcome to Islandeering I’m an islandeer, author and marine conservationist and passionate about sharing what I have learnt from my travels around the islands of the British Isles to help you find an adventure. I started the project 12 years ago after I had one of those light bulb moments and realised the pure magic that islands held for me. After meeting so many people on their island travels who shared my passion and told me that I must share my experiences so that others could do the same I set up Islandeering.com, where we are passionate about promoting responsible travel to our great British islands.
Learn More

Join our Islandeering community

We have a lot of fun here, as we continuously find new islands and meet plenty of great folks along the way. Join our community to get new routes and adventures, latest blogs and news by using the email box below. Tune in also to our Facebook and Instagram pages to see where we are going next.
Distance: 10.4 km
Difficulty: Easy
Method: Walking
Wow Factor: 8 out of 10

Key Facts

  • Location: Isles of Scilly
  • Size: 297 hectares
  • Terrain: Easy paths with some rockier sections in the north
  • Access: Inter-island ferry from St Mary's
  • Height gain: 201 metres
  • Map: OS Explorer 101
  • Starting point: Carn Near Quay (south of the island). Note: boats may also arrive/depart from New Grimsby depending on tides
  • Accommodation/food:

    Where to stay on Tresco. Tresco is a family-owned island and offers a range of luxurious accommodation. Most facilities are located between new and Old Grimsby including the New Inn, Tresco Stores & Deli & The Flying Boat restaurant. North of New Grimsby is the Ruin Beach Cafe & the Abbey Gardens has a cafe

  • Island Summary:

    The coast path around Tresco is a great way to see all that this delightful island has to offer. The island is a destination for those seeking more of a luxury resort and those who wish to visit the resplendent sub-tropical Abbey Gardens. It is different to the other more natural Scilly islands and has a holiday vibe all of its own. This jewel of an island offers plenty of talcum-soft sandy, the south is gentle, whilst the north is rugged moorland. There’s great sea-cave to explore, romantic coastal fortifications and tranquil views all around the best of which can be seen by walking Tresco’s coast path. A visit to Tresco is a must on everyone’s itinerary.

  • Look out for:
    • Explore Tresco's hidden cave
    • Great coffee on the Ruin Beach terrace
    • Walk to Bryher at low tide
  • Route description:

    The circular walk around the coast path of Tresco starts at Carn Near Quay. The easy estate ‘road’ through New Grimsby soon turns into a narrower, bracken-covered path to Cromwell’s Castle on the boulder-strewn shore before ascending to the ruins of King Charles’ Castle. From here the views are extensive – reaching Land’s End to the east and Bishops Rock Lighthouse to the west with all of the islands in between. The route then climbs Gun Hill in the north of the island and crosses the heather-clad moor via the sea-cave at Piper’s Hole to reach the delightful, castaway-café of Ruin Beach. After refreshments the grassy path south follows the bone-white beaches to reach the dune-backed Pentle Bay, named in the top ‘Under-the-Radar’ beaches by the Wall Street Journal. The route back to Carn Quay affords plentiful views of Abbey House and, if time permits, many options for a detour to visit the world-renowned sub-tropical garden and wildlife-rich Abbey Pool. Download our free route and GPS (from left hand bar)

  • Getting there:

    Getting to Tresco. Frequent boats from St Mary’s (and sometimes Bryher)

Download file for GPS

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