St Ives Penzance’s guide to the best festivals in Cornwall this summer, including Boardmasters, Port Eliot Festival, Falmouth Week, Golowan and Leopallooza. I don’t know if you’ve heard, but here in Cornwall we love a good party. Any excuse to spend time in the sun, listing to music, dancing and generally having a good time and we’re there. This means we have some great summer festivals and each year the line up is getting bigger and better. We’ve picked a few of our favourites so you won’t miss out:
Porthleven Food & Music Festival 21-24th April
Set in the small harbour town of Porthleven, drawing a crowd of around 30,000 visitors last year alone, this three-day festival of food, music, art, entertainment has an ‘Under the Sea’ theme. The festival is free to enter, with tickets only needed for camping or the after parties. For more information head to their website.
St Ives Food and Drink Festival 13-14th May
Taking place on the beautiful Porthminster Beach, this year’s St Ives Food and Drink Festival promises great culinary experts, attractions and a wide variety of local beverages and food. There will be a huge range of activities and entertainment which promises fun for all the family. Tickets are £5. For more information head to their website.
Masked Ball 26-28th May
The Masked Ball is a spectacular three-day party staged in Porthleven, Cornwall and since its conception in 2006 it has grown into a multilevel party kingdom, where themed venues range from outrageous to downright unsavoury and spectacular, with a world-class line-up of underground international DJs. This event is over 18’s only. Tickets start from £39 with camping. For more information head to their website.
Golowan Festival 16-25th June
Golowan Festival in Penzance is a week-long celebration of midsummer. Throughout the week there’s a range of events from exhibitions, concerts, parades and a fun fair all culminating in the final weekend. Mazey Eve on the 23rd sees the election of the Mock Major, followed by a torchlight procession and fireworks. Mazey Day on the 25th draws in the crowds with stalls, parades and live music and dance. For more information head to their website.
Port Eliot Festival 27-30th July
Set in the beautiful Port Eliot estate this literary festival is unlike any other. More like a garden party, this magical weekend allows you to swim in the estuary, picnic under a 300 year old tree, rock out at the Park Stage, canoe on the river, catch an intimate gig in the church, watch a cooking demo in the Big Kitchen or dance ‘till the early hours in the Boogie Round. Tickets start from £70 and can be purchased on their website.
Leopallooza 28-30th July
Known as the greatest house party… in a field, this award winning festival is now in it’s 10th year. Set in the scenic North Cornwall Countryside in woodlands and fields near Bude, this boutique festival offers a range of activities that will entertain both families of all ages and the experienced festival goer. Although this year’s line-up has not yet been announced (it’s coming very shortly, keep an eye on their Facebook page for updates) the festival always hosts a great mix of British talent and international artists. Tickets start from £90 and can be bought on their website.
Gin & Jazz in the Park 29th July
New to Cornwall’s festival line up is Gin & Jazz in the Park. Taking place at the Penlee Park Open Air Theatre this secret garden party is only a one day event with cocktails, live entertainment and world foods. Tickets start from £8 and can be purchased here.
Falmouth Week 4-13th August
Falmouth Week is not just a sailing regatta but a week full of family friendly events both on and off shore. The regatta is organised by the Port of Falmouth Sailing Association (PoFSA) which is a partnership of Falmouth’s six local sailing clubs. Falmouth Week has a full schedule of daytime and evening entertainment throughout the town, including the infamous 80’s/90’s Night on Events Square courtesy of South West Bars and Events, the Outlaw Summer Market on The Moor by Outlaw Events, The Pink Wig Night and the University of Exeter’s Science in the Square. Find out more about Falmouth Week here.
Bordmasters 9-13th August
Cornwall’s biggest music festival takes place on Fistral Beach and Watergate Bay every year. This year’s line up includes big names such as Jamiroquai, Two Door Cinema Club, ALT-J, Stormzy and The Vaccines. As well as music they’ve got a week-long surf competition, afterparties, markets and acoustic campfire sessions. Tickets start from £59 and can be bought from their website.
St Ives September Festival 9-23rd September
The St Ives September Festival celebrates music and art in one of Cornwall’s most popular seaside resorts. There’s a jam-packed calendar of events throughout the month from live music at The Guildhall and The Western Hotel, to free exhibitions, open studios and guided walks around the town. What makes this festival really unique is the wonderful atmosphere around the town; it’s lively and welcoming but not as hectic as St Ives in the summer.
What festival are you most looking forward to this summer? What do you think the best festival in Cornwall. You can also tag us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with #stivespenzance to share your photos of Cornwall.
Photo credit: Port Eliot Festival