AWNA Cafe in Mawnan Smith

AWNA is a gorgeous little independent cafe in the village of Mawnan Smith, near the Helford River and the popular beaches Grebe and Durgan. Unlike the busier beaches of Falmouth, there are fewer food options around this area and so AWNA is even more of a gem to visit. It opened last year between the lockdowns and has quickly become a local favourite.


Serving Origin coffee and homemade cakes as the main event, they also do simple sandwiches and filled pastries, but I would always choose to go for a sweet options here as that's what I feel they do the BEST!


The carrot cake in this picture is particularly delicious! I had it with a decaf cappuccino and they serve them in these cool little cups (I think they might be Husk) which is another little attention to detail that my favourite independent cafes do so well.


The inside seating area is gorgeous, with spacious tables and calming dried flower and botanical decorations alongside the wooden and black interior that fits so well with any Origin-style cafe. Dogs are welcome inside, which is amazing because mine is often pretty muddy after his Helford walks in the winter, but we are always met with a smile and a treat.


There is also a small outdoor picnic bench area which is a perfect sun trap but is on the edge of the (not very busy) car-park, so it's not as tranquil as inside.


If I wanted to eat outside I would choose to get a little take-away box and walk to one of the beautiful river beaches which are about a 15 minute walk away. My favourites are Porth Saxon, which you walk to through Carwinnion Woods, or Grebe, which you can get to via the footpaths and lanes that take you past the National Trust Bosveal car-park.


They are both grey pebble beaches with a calm atmosphere (usually!) and are dog-friendly all year round. Being on the river rather than facing straight out to sea they are also a little bit flatter for sea swimming if you fancy a dip before warming up with your hot drink and cake afterwards!