Falmouth is Cornwall’s leading South West Coast Resort and home to the County’s Maritime Heritage. Here you will find sandy golden beaches, spectacular scenery, specialist shops from local art to antiques and exceptional sailing in Carrick Roads and the Fal Estuary.
Henry VIII built Pendennis Castle to defend the Carrick Roads in 1540, which, together with St Mawes Castle on the east side meant that the estuary entrance was well guarded. Sir John Killigrew created the town of Falmouth shortly after 1613, which received a charter from Charles II in 1661. A new church was consecrated in 1665 and there was soon a cluster of a few hundred homes around the Church of “King Charles the Martyr”.
In 1688, Falmouth was made the Royal Mail packet station. In 1805, the news of Britain's victory (and Admiral Nelson's death) at Trafalgar was landed here at the steps of Fishstrand Quay from the schooner, H.M.S. Pickle and taken to London by stagecoach.
The development of Falmouth Docks began in 1858 with the first ship entering in 1861. The railway reached the town soon after, in 1863. This brought prosperity and also tourism to the town. Perhaps surprisingly, Falmouth boasts three railway stations; Falmouth Docks, Falmouth Town and Penmere.
Fal River Festival 2019
This fantastic 10 day celebration offers something for everyone, with over 100 events showcasing creative talent from the worlds of art, music, food, theatre, film, adventure & more.
Join in the celebrations with Fal River Festival 2019.
The 2019 festival will take place in Cornwall's most popular visitor destination from Friday 24th May to Sunday 2nd June.
This fantastic 10 day celebration is a not-for-profit community festival which encompasses over 150 events varying from music & drama, the arts & heritage to gig racing, swimming, walking & lots more.
The festival was established in 2006 and will be running for its 14th year in 2019. It's a chance to embrace the places, people, history, culture, sport & industry that are connected by this very Cornish river.
With its diverse mix of events taking place at dozens of locations around the Fal River, the festival offers something for everyone and is the perfect opportunity to engage with life on the river and discover some of its fascinating history.
To find out what’s on at this years festival click HERE
Fal River Festival
and surrounding areas
Falmouth International Sea Shanty Festival
What’s it all about?
The Falmouth International Sea Shanty Festival was founded in 2003 by Falmouth Shout, a group of singers whose mission is to keep alive the history of Tall Ships and the days of sail by performing sea shanties, songs of the sea and Cornish songs. The Festival’s aims are to raise money for the RNLI and to preserve and promote the maritime heritage of the area.
The Shanty Festival now takes place at the same time as the Falmouth Classics Regatta, the synergy of Classic Boats and Sea Shanties produces an event which provides an ideal opportunity to bring the Town and the Sailing scene closer together.
In common with other Celtic nations, Cornish people love singing and music and song has always been an important part of the county’s culture. Whether it be miner, fishermen or farmer, after the work was done, there were always stories to tell, songs to sing and a few pints to drink. The Sea Shanty festival provides a platform where that heritage of storytelling through song comes alive with live performances by over 50 groups from all over Cornwall, the UK, Holland and France.
How can you take part?
Described as the largest free festival of maritime music on the planet, the three day event kicks off on the Friday evening with singing on Custom House Quay and in Events Square, continuing at several other venues in town until late! It’s a great way to soak up the true atmosphere of Falmouth’s seafaring past and you’ll find it hard to stop your feet tapping along to the infectious rhythms.
Falmouth Sea Shanty Festival
Various venues throughout town
Falmouth Classics Regatta
The camaraderie of the best Classic Boat Rallies comes to Falmouth. The three day event, Falmouth Classics, brings the competitors together in one area in close proximity to the Falmouth International Sea Shanty Festival.
Classic boats from many parts of the country, the continent and the local area take part in this Classics event, with boats built as long ago as 1882 and lovingly restored taking their place alongside many more launched before the Second World War and other more modern versions of the classic designs.
The highlight of the regatta is the Parade of Sail and Power. The boats will Parade out of the inner harbour and into Carrick Roads, and will include the larger boats, making the magnificent spectacle of Pilot Cutters, Working Boats and other traditional craft under full sail.
The parade can be seen to best advantage from Pendennis Point, Pendennis Castle, Castle Drive and Trefusis Point. The Mayor of Falmouth, will take the salute from a Fal River Launch moored off the castle.
Falmouth Classics Regatta