Thrilling speedboat trips from Padstow

Enjoy a thrilling speedboat trip in one of the beautiful Padstow speedboats. The fleet of four red and white speedboats take up to 12 passengers at a time on a fast 15-minute trip around the Camel estuary. The polished wooden decks have a retro, quite James Bond-like feel.

The Padstow speedboats are named Thunder, Fireball, Jaws and Sea Fury. As some of their names suggest they’re very quick with fantastic sounding inboard engines. You’ll be whisked along the coastline past Daymer Bay and back. So much better than any fairground rides. The skippers often put a few twists and turns in for extra exhilaration but it always feels completely safe.

The boats run from the Padstow harbour slipway or other boarding points in the harbour from Easter to October, weather and tide times permitting. The ride is usually quite smooth as they plane the choppy water. Sit in the front behind the windscreen if you don’t want the occasional splash.

The skippers are very experienced and the boats carry all the safety equipment required. You don’t need to book, just jump aboard. Dogs are welcome and travel free. The cost of a trip was a very reasonable £7 per person in 2016, it may be higher in 2017.

About the Padstow speedboats

According to a thread on the pistoheads blog the most recently built of the four Padstow speedboats is Fireball XL5. It was built by master boat builder, John England, in Padstow, in 1999. He may have built the others too. It’s suggested the mould for the fibreglass hulls was in a boatyard in Wadebridge for some time.

Three similar boats to the Padstow speedboats were running out of Looe on the Cornish South Coast at one time, one, called Superstar, launched in 1972, still is. The maker of the Looe speedboats seems to be Norman Pearn & Co Ltd. According to this website some Looe speedboats were sold a few years ago.

There’s a lot more information about the Padstow speedboats and others on the pistonheads blog.