Places to visit

Whatever the weather, Cornwall has attractions and activities for everyone. We can only offer you a taste of what is available.

The Eden Project

Eden Project 09-10-2007

The Eden Project

The Eden Project has captured the world’s imagination. Two giant biomes house two wildly-different environments (Humid Tropics and Warm Temperate) that exist thousands of miles from their natural homes. The Eden Project is one of the UK’s top tourist attractions and, due to its very nature, is a place you will want to return to year after year to watch it develop.

National Maritime Museum, Falmouth

The National Maritime Museum is a gateway to the maritime world, offering unique and interactive displays of boats and their place in people’s lives.

The Arts

The Tate Gallery at St Ives primarily presents modern British art in a spectacular coastal setting. There is an eclectic mixture of galleries throughout the West Cornwall area, ensuring easy access to visual art.

St Ives April 08

Tate Gallery, St Ives

Carved from the cliffs near Porthcurno, the outdoor Minack Theatre stands as a permanent tribute to Rowena Cade, whose inspiration has left a legacy for all to enjoy and a theatre experience that cannot be missed.

The Hall for Cornwall in Truro is arguably the county’s permier venue for the performing arts.

Town and City

It was only in Victorian times that Penzance became the major town in West Cornwall – previously, Marazion held this mantle. Penzance boasts many fine old buildings, dating from the 17th to 18th century. Of note, the Egyptian House in Chapel Street is of an extraordinary design. Chapel Street boasts a fine array of antique shops. Art Deco fans will relish the recently refurbished outdoor Jubilee Bathing Pool and the architecture of the nearby Yacht Inn.

Penzance Docks

Penzance Harbour

St Ives is one of Cornwall’s oldest holiday resorts that is as well known for its artistic community as for its pristine golden beaches, popular with families and surfers. In the cobbled alleyways you will find numerous galleries and interesting shops. St Ives also has a state-of-the-art leisure centre with gym and swimming facilities.

The city of Truro is the administrative centre and the main shopping venue in Cornwall. Truro’s neo-Gothic cathedral was built between 1880 and 1910 with its central tower rising to 76 metres (250 feet). Truro’s many fine Georgian houses and terraces are a reminder of local copper- and tin-mining wealth and these subjects are explored in the attractive Royal Cornwall Museum, which also includes some fine landscape paintings by artists of the Newlyn School of Art.

Truro Cathedral

Truro Cathedral

Nearer to home, the market town of Helston is the home of the famous Furry Dance celebrations. While you are there, take time out to visit the Helston Folk Museum.

The Isles of Scilly

St Mary's, one of the Isles of Scilly

St Mary’s, one of the Isles of Scilly

Warmed by the Gulf Stream, buffeted by the Atlantic, relying on sea and air links with the mainland, the unique Isles of Scilly are a world apart. Populated by a friendly community of just over 2000 islanders, sub-tropical Scilly has a tranquillity and a quality of life long lost to less isolated places.

Exotic plants and wild flowers, ancient cairns and crumbling castles, sparkling white sands by an azure sea – all just 28 miles from Land’s End.

Take a boat trip to the Isles of Scilly by the Scillonian III or fly from Land’s End aerodrome.

Land’s End area

By value of fish landed, Newlyn is the UK’s largest fishing port with 150 working boats. The Pilchard Works was the last factory in Britain where pilchards were pressed and packed and today it houses an exhibition on the town’s working and social history. Landscape paintings by artists of the famous Newlyn School of Art, as well as contemporary works, may be seen in the Newlyn Art Gallery.

Surviving the onslaught of modern tourism, Mousehole is an unspoilt fishing village famous for its Christmas illuminations and, of course, the Mousehole Cat. Above the village, is the Mousehole Wild Bird Hospital.

Mousehole Christmas lights

Christmas lights in Mousehole harbour

Concealed in the cliffs above the golden sandy beach at Porthcurno is the Porthcurno Telegraph Museum showing how the world has become a smaller place thanks to communications. A fascinating insight into international telegraph communications and a reminder that Porthcurno continues to be the major communications connection between the UK and North America.

Take time out to visit Land’s End: a place of legend, mystery and stunning natural beauty. And just further along the coast near St Just is Cape Cornwall, the only cape in the British Isles.

Lizard peninsula

The Lizard peninsula leads to Britain’s most southerly point. Playing a key role in the history of global communication, it was from the Lizard that Marconi first received wireless signals from North America. Also, Telstar beamed the first international television pictures into Goonhilly Earth Station – once the largest satellite earth station in the world.

The National Trust has recently renovated the experimental wireless station used by Marconi at Poldu Cove.

You can also visit the Gweek Seal Sanctuary at Gweek or take a tour at RNAS Culdrose, home of air sea rescue helicopters (01326 565085).

Gardens to visit

Cornwall has a splendid array of gardens to visit including:

Activities

There are also countless other activities available to suit all ages and tastes:

Of course, there are also miles and miles of coastal and country walks to enjoy in one of Britain’s most spectacular landscapes.

So much to see, so much to do, you will want to come back to Cornwall again and again.