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For me, Falmouth is one of the better natural deep water Ports in the UK. You’ll find a sheltered nook or cranny to hide away in either in the Carrick Roads of in the harbour proper. I remember being a watch lead on a Challenge 67 and dropping in there to hide from a gale. The boat would have been up for the challenge but the crew had been pushing south from the Isle of Man and frankly, needed the break. So we dived into the harbour and dropped the anchor as most other large yachts had had similar views and already grabbed the prime berths.
Maps and Charts (Not for navigation)
The approach to the harbour is very benign, open easily navigated at all tides. The imaginatively named ‘Black Rock’ guards the centre of the entry channel and often hosts a herd of seals. St Anthony’s Head light house on the East of the estuary is a sector light that helps ships avoid the Manacles, the rocky outcrop to the East of the Lizard. A good visual feature, the lamps have always been a little weak at night.
Falmouth harbour is a working harbour, with large ship refits being conducted alongside berthed cruise liners. The Royal Fleet Auxillary are regular visitors and they are often accompanied by vessels of the Royal Navy. Being a working harbour, those vessels plying their trade on the water have the right of way and give no quarter, so beware of the
Falmouth is served by 2 good marinas. The Falmouth Haven and Port Pendennis Marina. Both have water and onshore bathroom facilities. Port Pendennis has the advantage of being able to host much larger boats alongside its pontoons and has a laundry ashore. The Haven has the advantage of being closer to town and hosting the fuel pontoon. Both provide good quality and a friendly service.
A thriving yachting community is catered to by both a comprehensive is somewhat small chandlery, the Bosuns Locker and for more functional and mundane stores, Trago Mills in the west end of town is often has other useful hardware bargains.
On warm days the town is worthy of a visit and there are many speciality shops to admire and frequent food samples in the shops for those that into culinary grazing. The beaches are good and amongst the finest in the UK.
Falmouth is also well services by restaurants from a great fish and chip shop, the Harbour Lights owned by Pete Fraser, a friend from my service days to some of the better curry houses in Cornwall. And the sea food is to die for and rivals a Loch Fyne catch in every case.
The National Maritime Museum is a great place to visit on a rainy day, with lots for young and old to explore. And if you time your visit right, there are festivals of every kind to enjoy. From oysters to Sea Shanties and beer to local food.
Port Pendennis Marina and the Maritime Museum Picture Credit Peter Edwards
All in all Falmouth is a great place to overnight or even tie up for a few days.
Go get that horizon!