The Roseland Peninsula

The Roseland Peninsula


The Picturesque Peninsula



Gerrans     St. Just-in-Roseland     St. Mawes     Philleigh     Portholland
Portloe     Portscatho     Ruan Lanihorne     Tregony     Veryan
Places to Visit     Ferry Services

Few places in Cornwall can compare with the Roseland - one of the most picturesque and unspoilt parts of the British Isles. Lovely beaches and cliffs, delightful rivers and countryside, pretty villages and hamlets all make the Roseland the perfect holiday setting. Access is not difficult as the A3078 road runs down the spine of the peninsula.

Here you can walk the cliffs or riverbanks, swim off the beaches, browse the shops, sail, windsurf, water-ski, dive, snorkel, fish and birdwatch. During the warmer months there are carnivals and fetes, regattas and gig racing, not to mention the heavy horse show and all the wonderful gardens open to the public.

Variety being the spice of life, the Roseland offers a wide selection of places to stay to refresh the inner man. Traditional hotels, farm-house bed and breakfast, lovely guest houses, quality cottages and caravans or well equipped camp sites provide your style of accommodation to the standards you expect. Flower covered pubs, riverside barbecues, cream tea cottages and restaurants of high repute add a little more magic to your holiday.

St. Mawes
A harbour-side village in a glorious position curled around a sunny south-facing bay with a safe anchorage and good beaches for swimming and sunbathing. There are several shops, cafes and hotels around the harbour as well as a Sailing Club. There is a regular ferry service to Falmouth, and another across to St. Anthony. Local pub is the Rising Sun.

St. Just-in-Roseland
The village's main attraction is its church. Set in magnificent gardens overflowing with semitropical shrubs and trees the church perches on the edge of the creek. A path leads from the creek onto the coastal footpath which continues to St. Mawes. This is a delightful walk of approximately two miles. The name Roseland comes from the Cornish ros, meaning 'promontory', and refers to the fertile farming landscape from St. Anthony in the south up towards Tregony, and extending to Veryan in the east.

Portscatho lies in a sheltered cove in the corner of Gerrans Bay and is still an active fishing village. Safe swimming and extensive sandy beaches mean it has great family appeal. The TV drama The Camomile Lawn was filmed near here. Local pub is the Plume of Feathers.

Gerrans lies at the top of the hill above Portscatho and the medieval spire of St. Gerrans church has acted as a landmark to generations of local sailors. Just one mile to the north is Dingerein Castle where King Geraint of Dumnonia was killed in 710. The village boasts several shops - some of which offer locally caught fish and locally grown garden produce as well as a locally produced crafts. The surrounding countryside offers interesting walks with an abundance of wild flowers. Gerrans and Portscatho have become popular as a small holiday resort with visitors returning year after year. Gerrans Heritage Centre opened in 2004. Gerrans feast day is celebrated on the 10th August. The local pub is The Royal Standard.

The Roundhouses mark the entrances to Veryan - a village of particular charm. The large church of St. Symphorian is set in one of the loveliest of Cornish church-towns, set amongst lush trees and gardens. The pride taken in the village by its inhabitants is there for all to see. It boasts a Sports Pavilion with provision for tennis, cricket, bowls and a children's playground. The Indoor Bowling Green is a prime example of community co-operation and is a must for the visitor. Gala week in mid-July is a bonanza of local colour culminating in a parade through the village. There is a long grave in the churchyard containing nineteen bodies from the German barque 'Hera' which was wrecked off Gull Rock in 1914. Various scenes for the 1992 television drama series The Camomile Lawn, based on the Mary Wesley's book of the same name were filmed in Veryan and on the coast at nearby Portloe. Local pub is The New Inn.

Portloe is the living reality of a Cornish fishing village. The boats unload lobster, crab and other fish. Pretty cottages cluster around the harbour and stretch up the valley on both sides. The village caters for the hungry and thirsty visitor with a local pub, hotel and restaurant producing excellent fare. Local pub is The Ship Inn.

The ancient name of Philleigh is Eglos-Ros, meaning Heath Church. The original church dedicated to St. Filius was built in the middle of the 7th century and was replaced in the 13th century. Unfortunately, today, only the tower remains from the 13th century, the rest of the church having been updated and restored in 1867. Road maps as early as 1685 show the main road from London to Land's End ran through Philleigh. The road crossed the river at the King Harry Ferry and Tolverne Passage. The local pub is the Roseland Inn.

Ruan Lanihorne
Ruan Lanihorne stands on the old coach road from Penzance to London. The village church - dedicated to St. Rumonus in 1321 - is built of local grey, slate stone and is gothic in style. Recent restorations include the installation of a stained glass window in 1866. The font is dated about the 14th century and is Norman. The vicar from 1777 to 1808 was John Whitaker and it was from his research into Cornwall not always being part of the diocese of Exeter that Truro Cathedral was built. The creek at Ruan Lanihorne is a bird lovers paradise as it provides a haven for waders and waterfowl. The gentle hills and leafy lanes are a joy for walking enthusiasts and explorers. Local pub is The Kings Head.

Known as the gateway to the Roseland Peninsula - Tregony was an active port in the 14th century surrounded by busy woollen mills producing a rough serge known as Tregony cloth. Craft of considerable size could navigate the Fal River right up to Tregony Bridge long before the Ports of Truro, Penryn and Falmouth were developed. However, due to tin streaming in the St. Stephens area the river eventually silted up and the harbour became unusable. On the political front Tregony achieved its peak when James granted the town the constitution of Free Borough. Tregony was entitled to return two representatives to Westminster until the 1832 Reform Act when it had become one of the Rotten Boroughs. As you climb up Tregony Hill you pass the site of a Roman Castle known as Treg-ney. Modern Tregony offers the visitor a choice of accommodation within a thriving village community. Local pub is The Kings Arms.

Fishing hamlet with twin coves joined at low tide at the foot of tall cliffs accessible only by a narrow lane. Nearby is Caerhays Castle.

Places to Visit

Roundhouses, Veryan
Built by the Trist Family in the early 19th century and situated at the entrances to the village - these private thatched circular cottages have become a unique feature of Veryan. It was thought that the round shape would guard the village from evil as there were no corners in which the devil could hide!

St. Mawes Castle
Built in the reign of Henry VIII as a defence against invasion by France. The attack never came, but the Castle, with its three huge circular bastions (like a clover leaf) and gun ports covering every angle of approach, is a fine example of Tudor military architecture. Although well-placed to deal with a seaborne attack, it was impossible to defend from the landward side and, when besieged by General Fairfax during the Civil War, had no choice but to surrender without a shot being fired. The Castle offers some of the finest views of Falmouth and its situation on the waters edge make it a must to visit. The Castle is now in the custodianship of English Heritage and open to the public all year round.

Caerhays Castle Garden
An informal 60 acre woodland garden noted for its camellias, magnolias and rhododendrons. Awarded National Collection Status in 2001, the grounds at Caerhays contain over 450 Magnolias - making it one of the most important collections in the British Isles.

St. Just-in-Roseland Church
Described as one of the most beautiful churches in England. Set magnificently on the waters edge amongst sub-tropical trees and shrubs. A path leads from the church around the edge of the creek to a nearby boatyard where the coastal path continues towards St. Mawes - a delightful walk of approximately two miles.

Turnaware Bar and Tolverne
Both of these areas were used as embarkation points for the D-Day landings in June 1944. The shingle beaches were covered with concrete honey-combe mattresses parts of which can still he found today. The pub at Tolverne is full of memorabilia of the era and is well worth a visit.

St. Anthony Head
St. Anthony Head is a National Trust property situated at the southernmost tip of the Roseland Peninsula, overlooking the entrance to one of the world's largest natural harbours: Carrick Roads and the estuary of River Fal.

St. Anthony Head Lighthouse
A coal beacon burned here for centuries until, the present lighthouse was built in 1835. It snares the entrance to the Carrick Roads, and seeps ships clear of the infamous Manacles Rocks. Although automated the light house is often open for visitors during the summer. The lighthouse was also the set for the television series 'Fraggle Rock'. St. Anthony Head is owned and maintained by The National Trust.

St. Anthony Head Battery
The strategic importance of St. Anthony Head for the defence of Carrick Roads and Falmouth is testified by the remains of many fortifications. The battery was constructed in 1897 and by 1902 mounted two six inch breech loading guns. The battery was disarmed sometime between 1916 and 1919. During world war one the area was used for Army training and in world war two gun batteries were stationed here and finally retired in 1952. The Headland was bought by the National Trust in 1959. An interpretative panel is situated by the toilets and a leaflet giving further information is for sale during the summer.

St. Anthony Church
The parish church of St. Anthony was built in 1150 and dedicated to St. Antoninus King and Martyr. The church was established by the prior of the Augustinian Priory. The site of the former priory is now the site of the house of the Spry family, Place Manor, which was built in 1840 in front of the church. The church still has its original mediaeval cruciform plan, more or less as it was built, despite having been extensively restored in the 19th century. The restoration was commissioned by Samuel Thomas Spry, Member of Parliament (MP) for Bodmin between 1832 and 1841. The church contains many memorials of the Spry family including Sir Richard Spry.

The Lost Gardens of Heligan
Situated near to the fishing village of Mevagissey, Heligan is Britain's largest ever garden restoration project. This restoration includes twenty two acres of land which has been under jungle since 1914 and the rediscovery of a wonderful collection of Victorian walled gardens. Described by the Sunday Times as 'a triumph in restoration' Heligan is a garden not to be missed.

Lamorran Gardens
Lamorran garden is an Italianate Mediterranean garden on four acres of hillside overlooking Falmouth Bay and St. Anthony's Head and on the Roseland Peninsula.

Trist House Garden
A 5 acre, old vicarage garden, with lawns, herbaceous borders, shrubberies, woodland, lake and historic rockeries, near Veryan.

Poppy Cottage Garden
A pocket sized garden with year round colour, located near Veryan on the A3078.

Melinsey Mill
One of very few mills in Cornwall, tucked away in a valley near Veryan.

Ferry Services

The peninsula shape of the Roseland makes travel by ferry the most convenient and quickest way of visiting from many parts of the County - saving many miles on round trips in the car.

The King Harry Ferry
This chain link ferry has been making the crossing between Philleigh and Feock for over 100 years. The ferry can accommodate up to 28 cars and runs every twenty minutes.

The St. Mawes - Place Ferry
The St. Mawes - Place ferryboat takes passengers to St. Anthony-in-Roseland, a remote and unspoilt part of the Roseland. The ferry takes about ten minutes and visitors should come prepared with stout footwear for walking.

Falmouth - St. Mawes Ferry
A regular ferry service operates from Falmouth's Prince of Wales Pier to St. Mawes. The trip lasts 25 minutes and offers excellent views of some of the areas best landmarks including Pendennis Castle and St. Mawes Castle, Black Rock and St. Anthony's Lighthouse. The service runs half hourly in the season.

Art Galleries

Pebble Gallery

Veryan Galleries


Roseland Festival - end of April

Gerrans Feast Day - 10th August

Falmouth       Grampound       Mevagissey       Portscatho       Truro       St. Mawes       Portloe       Portholland       Tregony

Cornwall's Ferrys       The Coastal Footpath       Trist House Garden       Veryan Vineyard       Melinsey Mill       St. Anthony Head

Caerhays Castle Garden       Lamorran Gardens       Poppy Cottage Garden       The Lost Gardens of Heligan       Portscatho Vineyard

Lambourne Vineyard       St. Anthony Head Lighthouse       St. Antony Head Battery       St. Mawes Castle       Dodman Point       St. Ewe