A vibrant coastal town with creativity at its heart, surrounded by an unbeatable natural playground.
Falmouth regularly features on lists of the best places to live in the UK (including this recent poll in The Times), and it’s easy to see why.
The town itself has a buzzing high street packed with independent stores, coffee shops and bars fuelled by the student population of Falmouth University – a creative centre with a world-class reputation. Cornwall’s famously good food and drink takes on a more eclectic, globally-inspired street food feel here, where you’ll find burritos, sushi, bao buns, tacos, daal, falafel and more in plentiful supply.
The natural riches surrounding this town (described by The Times as California/Barcelona city-by-the-sea) are diverse and abundant. Falmouth is without question one of the best places to learn to sail in the UK, but life on the water doesn’t stop there.
Surfing, SUP, kayaking and snorkeling are all easily undertaken from one of the town’s sandy beaches. And even in the summer it’s easy to lose the crowds as excellent coastal walks lead to quiet coves, sub tropical valleys and picturesque creek-side villages.
Falmouth is a great place for families with young children, with many excellent parks and plenty of clubs and activities, but it’s also a fun and safe town for teenagers to grow up in, with lots to keep them busy.
Falmouth is a tourist attraction, with cultural highlights like the National Maritime Museum and Pendennis Castle, but it has more of a year-round buzz than many other Cornish towns.
Entrepreneurial students stick around after their degrees, setting up businesses in the creative, digital and environmental sectors. Meanwhile some of the most significant employers in Cornwall (A&P, Seasalt, Trago Mills, Pendennis Shipyard) are based here giving the town a comfortably affluent feel but with a refreshingly alternative attitude.
Location & transport links
Falmouth is served by an excellent branch line train service connecting it with Truro and therefore the main Paddington to Penzance line. Services run several times an hour and up until around 11pm. The branch line also makes travelling between Penryn, Falmouth Town and Falmouth Docks easy.
By road the A39 links Falmouth with Truro, skirting around the city to the A30. It’s also easy to access West Cornwall via Helston and then on to Penzance. The Roseland Peninsula can also be reached via the King Harry Ferry at Trelissick.
Though few would use the waterways to commute anymore, the various small ferries which depart from Falmouth are useful and pleasant options for days out. Travel to St Mawes, Trelissick, Truro and Flushing can be pre-purchased at a discount with a Fal Mussel Card.
Places to eat & drink
From coffee shops to fine dining, Falmouth has an enormous array of food and drink options to satisfy all cravings. Discover quirky cafes, beach bars, foodie pubs and backstreet bistros as you explore your new surroundings. Here’s just a handful to get you started:
- The Warehouse, Penryn – Origin Coffee’s latest Cornish outpost has an eye-catching interior and an original food offering which matches the quality of the coffee – outstanding!
- Satellite Cafe – The industrial estate location is an unusual one, but this vegan cafe is worth searching out. Great food and the all-round ethos of community and environmental sustainability is to be admired.
- Fal Falafel – You’ll find this food van on The Moor most days. The falafels are excellent!
- Stones Bakery – A wide selection of delicious savouries, morning pastries and awesome bread, without the usual ‘artisan bakery’ price tag.
- Bango Kitchen – A new arrival on Commercial Road in Penryn, Bango Kitchen promises freshly prepared Sushi, Ramen, Bao Buns and Dumplings to eat in or takeaway.
- Potager Garden – This beautiful kitchen garden with its restored greenhouses is the setting for another excellent vegetarian/vegan cafe. Look out for news on evening openings and special events.
- Daaku – This Indian restaurant in Penryn uses the finest local ingredients in its weekly changing menus. The offbeat location in a boatyard gives an element of secrecy, though it has been winning national acclaim so not for long!
- Hooked On The Rocks – Located overlooking Swanpool Beach, this restaurant is the perfect spot for a special meal. The menu features bucket-loads of fresh seafood.
- The Idle Rocks – Take the ferry over to St Mawes and treat yourself to lunch at The Idle Rocks, where chef Guy Owen has put his own signature stamp on the Cornish fine dining scene.
- The Cove – This restaurant at Maenporth Beach has a strong local following with the foodie crowd. Dine on the deck and enjoy elegant dishes featuring seasonal produce.
You’ll find most of the major supermarkets in and around Falmouth for essentials, plus Argal Farm Shop and Bailey’s Country Store for local food. Be sure to check out un-rap in town for plastic-free food shopping too. Not surprisingly there are plenty of places to buy freshly caught fish, including Seabourne Fish in Penryn.
There are a good selection of interior stores to help you get up-and-running in your new home. B&Q is next to Asda on the A39 just outside town. Just Delights, also in Penryn, has a great selection of soft furnishings and decorative items, while Willow and Stone on Arwenack Street in the town centre is full of interior inspiration. Whilst you’re there check out Botanical Atelier opposite.
Falmouth Garden Centre and Cornish Garden Nurseries are both good places to start creating your own sub-tropical garden to help make the most of the mild climate Falmouth enjoys. Falmouth has excellent local schools, with 5 main primary schools feeding into Penryn College and Falmouth School. For more information on local education provision click here.
Falmouth has a good mixture of period townhouses, affordable family homes, luxurious contemporary properties and well-appointed apartments.
Such is its desirability as a place to call home that average prices now sit at £352,000 and have seen a rise of 23% over the last 5 years.
Property near the beaches, especially with sea views, is always expensive, but on the outskirts of town prices are still relatively reasonable given the desirability of the area and all it has to offer.
Penryn, which is all but connected to Falmouth, is a good place to look for affordable property and benefits from a pleasant high street and plenty of local amenities.
It’s a competitive market in Falmouth, so if you’re looking at relocating we recommend making sure you’re in position to move quickly; then your dream home in Falmouth could be just around the corner!
Why we love Falmouth!
- Its proximity to the Helford River – one of the most beautiful parts of Cornwall. From Helford Passage take the small ferry across the river to the village of Helford and visit The Shipwrights Arms for lunch on the deck.
- Ice Creams at Swanpool Beach. These ice creams (Callestick ice cream, smothered in Cornish clotted cream) have become the stuff of local legend.
- Great Gardens. Trebah, Glendurgan, Trelissick and Penjerrick are all close by. National Trust membership is a worth-while investment when living here, as is an Annual Pass to Trebah.
- A lively bar scene. Falmouth has a drinking option whatever your mood. Take your book for company to Beerwolf Books or work your way through the cocktail list at Moth & Moon. The Star & Garter is a fantastic food pub with great views, and Verdant Seafood Bar serves freshly brewed craft beers alongside excellent small seafood plates.
- Events all year. Falmouth has a calendar brimming with festivals, music and food events including Falmouth Oyster Festival, Falmouth International Sea Shanty Festival, Fal River Festival and Falmouth Reggae Festival. There is something for everyone and never a dull weekend!
Looking to buy in Falmouth?
If Falmouth takes your fancy, and you can see yourself living there, give us a call or email and we can help you find the ideal property to suit your lifestyle.
A selection of the images used are courtesy of Matt Jessop, Paul Abbitt and Adam Gibbard at Visit Cornwall.