Close My Favourites
Select up to 3 cottages to compare

The Birdcage

Port Isaac, Cornwall

+ Add to favourites


This section of the page features an image gallery, so if you're using a screen reader you may wish to jump to the main content.

Rising up out of the higgledy-piggledy of old Port Isaac, now famous for the Doc Martin series, the Grade II-listed Birdcage is a remarkably charismatic building. Two centuries old, pentagonal, three-stored and with a terrace reached through the bathroom, this former cobbler's shop has tiny rooms and a staircase that slims down to just over a foot wide in places. If you're looking for an unusual and extraordinarily picturesque cottage with views of the harbour from the bedroom and sitting room, then The Birdcage is for you.

The cottage's layout

Ground floor
kitchen with door leading to bathroom.
First floor
sitting room with multi-fuel stove.
Other floor
Second floor: double bedroom.
Visitor notes

Heating: Night storage heating included, convector heating and free eco logs for the stove included.

Garden: Enclosed, pretty terrace with views over the wall to the sea. Access to the terrace is through a low door from the bathroom.

Parking: Access to cottage is by foot - there is no adjacent parking.

Parking available in the village lanes or in one of the public car parks at the top of the village.

For information on long stay car parking at New Road, Port Isaac, please visit the website. You can also call 0300 1234 222.

Please Note: This gem of a cottage is small and compact. It has a very steep, narrow staircase 43cm at the narrowest point.

Offers: Free admission to Tintagel Old Post Office subject to seasonal opening hours.

For any 2 night stay starting on a Friday, or 3 nights starting on a Thursday, guests can benefit from a late departure time on the Sunday of 6pm, at no extra charge.

Accessiblity: The Birdcage is unsuitable for those with impaired mobility.

Local Suppliers: Guest discount offered to NT guests by outdoor activity providers Cornish Rock Tors and Outdoor Adventure

Not suitable for children

Due to very steep, narrow stairs we feel this cottage is not suitable for children.

Cottage details
Let starts
Min stay
Dogs allowed
Cottage ref
Acorn rating What's this?
  • Open fire / stove
  • Beach nearby
  • Pub nearby
  • Coast nearby
  • Romantic
  • Unique
  • Television
  • Double bed
  • Microwave
  • Radio
  • If you would like a copy of the access statement for this cottage please call the booking office on 0344 335 1287
  • No children allowed


Things to see and do nearby

South West England
Two women drawing a huge sun on the sandy beach at Kynance Cove, Cornwall. © John Miller

The South West region is probably England's most well-known holiday hotspot, being home to some of the most famous seaside resorts. Pretty villages and harbours in Cornwall, many with sweeping sandy beaches, such as St Ives, Polzeath and Port Isaac to name but a few, give way to sophisticated seaside resorts in Devon and Dorset which include Bournemouth, Torquay and Ilfracombe. The history of this region is unrivalled; Wiltshire's spectacular downland and the stone circles at Avebury and Stonehenge, through Hardy's Dorset, dramatic Dartmoor and gentler Exmoor, to the mining landscapes of Cornwall and West Devon, which are now recognised as being of international significance, having been awarded World Heritage Site status in 2006. The Trust protects 370 miles of the coastline in Devon and Cornwall and, wherever you are in the two far western counties, you're never more than 25 miles from the sea. As well as this peninsula, the Trust also cares for much of the countryside in Gloucestershire, Somerset, Wiltshire and Dorset and a wide array of fascinating properties to visit and explore. Not surprisingly, perhaps, this area is also home to the widest selection of National Trust holiday cottages.

North Cornwall
The view from Doyden Castle, Port Isaac, Cornwall © Mike Henton

The north coast is where the tremendous force of the Atlantic Ocean crashes against the mighty cliffs of Cornwall. With waves incessantly beating against the rocks below, the coast path provides some of the best walking in Europe and dramatic views.

North Cornwall also boasts several fine, sandy beaches, with the same massive rollers providing some of the best surfing in the country. The Trust has 22 holiday cottages and apartments in this wonderful part of the county including three at Park Head, a remote headland just a mile to the north of Bedruthan Steps but only six miles from Padstow, and three at Pentireglaze, close to the sandy beach of Polzeath. Further round the coast are the dramatically situated Doyden House and Castle and the picturesque hamlet of Port Quin. Port Isaac, Port Gaverne and Boscastle are all charming villages with lots of atmosphere and perfect as holiday bases.

Cottage location
Current cottage
Holiday cottage
National Trust
place to visit
Cluster of pins Shows number of grouped pins. Zoom in to see individual pins
  • South West Coast Path
  • Wadebridge
  • Bird watching
  • cycling
  • fishing
  • golf
  • horse riding
  • walking
  • coasteering
  • kayaking
  • surfing.
National Trust places to visit
Tintagel Old Post Office
Tintagel Old Post Office One of the Trust's most delightful medieval buildings, enhanced by a cottage garden
Boscastle Picturesque harbour and village on the north Cornish coast
Carnewas and Bedruthan Steps
Carnewas and Bedruthan Steps Dramatic coastline with views over massive rock stacks
Lanhydrock Magnificent late Victorian country house with extensive servants' quarters, gardens and wooded estate
Trerice Elizabethan manor house with fine interiors and delightful garden
Lawrence House
Lawrence House Beautiful Georgian town house

Visitor comments

Comments from past visitors

  • Mrs Barrass
    • January 2015
    • West Sussex
    Made special by its:

    uniqueness and standard of facilities. Location, Loved it! loved the rucksack and map! very useful as we forgot ours.Flask was not great at containing heat, did not report this at the time

  • Anonymous
    • November 2014
    • --------------
    Made special by:

    The unique nature of this authentic fisherman's cottage. We loved our stay here and will be back again. Thank you!

  • Patricia Paulson
    • September 2014
    • USA
    It was special to us because of:

    The Port Isaac location; it was also a very unique cottage. Happily surprised with the welcome tray and fresh flowers.

  • Robert Done
    • February 2014
    • England
    Quaint cottage

    The attention to detail was first class. The location, standard & cleanliness was excellent, the quaintness of cottage was very special

  • Claire Dyson
    • January 2014
    • Berkshire
    Unique experience

    The Birdcage was the most unique experience. The welcome tray, biscuits and flowers put a smile on our faces the minute we walked through the door. It was very well-equipped, beautifully decorated and great location. Thank you to the caretaker Julie for all the obvious hard work that goes into maintaining this beautiful, quirky building. Battling the elements down there can't be easy! What makes this place special............The narrow staircases, the freestanding bath, the beautiful bed (and quilted bedthrow), the building itself with one room per floor, the wood burner, the location looking down to the harbour, the thoughtfulness of the welcome tray and the National Trust fully equipped rucksack!

  • Polly & Sam
    • March 2009
    Loved being in The Birdcage

    Four days of amazing weather for March. Tintagel was lovely and the cliff top walk has fantastic views. Very good food and beer. Loved being in The Birdcage - much more fun than living in a flat!

  • Andrew & Deb Deeprose
    • November 2008
    The Birdcage is as wonderful as ever

    Hello, for our 5th time we just can't keep away. The Birdcage is as wonderful as ever, so clean and welcoming. Great walk on Thursday from Crackington Haven. Dinner at the 'Harbour' - still great. Thank you N.T. for such a wonderful, romantic, snug, and 'oops mind your head' location! We will be back!

  • Mr. & Mrs. T
    • September 2008

    Idyllic, quirky, cosy! Fantastically clean, and furnished to the highest standard.

Stayed at The Birdcage recently?

We welcome your views on The Birdcage and these can be provided via our online survey.


What it will cost

Prices include:

  • VAT, Linen, heating and electricity (except where shown in the cottage details)
  • We cannot accept website bookings more than 15 months in advance. Please call 0344 335 1287 or email to enquire about future bookings and reservations.
  • The National Trust reserves the right to move cottage prices up or down and to alter date breaks. We also reserve the right to charge supplements for cottages for specific dates covering special events, e.g. Rosetta Cottages on the Isle of Wight during Cowes week. We will notify you of any special event supplements at the time of booking.

Check availability & book

Choose the dates of your holiday (Step 1 of 3)
  • * indicates a required field