Penryn is a small and historic port on the south coast of Cornwall, chartered in 1236. During the 19th Century, the town was known for the export of granite, used in such buildings as the Bank of England and many of the country’s lighthouses. The town is home to Penryn Campus, a large university campus occupied by two institutions – Falmouth University and the University of Exeter. Over recent years the area has thrived, due to a significant increase in student population, in turn having a positive impact on local businesses. The scenic Helford River is a short drive away, with areas such as Falmouth, Truro and Helston in close proximity, making this attractive town a perfect place for those seeking a quieter lifestyle, while being conveniently close to the liveliness of larger towns.
Here are some recommendations on things to do and places to see:
For a spot of cafe culture & fine cuisine
Brewed in nearby Porthleven, the coffee at Origin’s Warehouse is some of the best. All their food is locally sourced and it’s a relaxing space to enjoy a solo espresso or a latte with friends.
Close by you’ll find a host of other great cafes including river views and sundowners at Muddy Beach; authentic home-baked Italian food at Stargazy and great cake with a side of changing art exhibitions at the Fish Factory Art Space.
Don’t miss Bango Kitchen if Asian street food is on your menu of great things – serving up sushi, dumplings, ramen, noodles, bao buns and more. One not to miss!
And for a plant-based treat, take a walk in College Woods and seek out The Pirate & The Geisha for an array of delicious raw vegan food and beverages served with plant milks made by owner Shilly Nakedmoon’s own fair hand.
For heritage seekers
There’s plenty to entertain in Penryn if you love taking a step back into the past. Visit Penryn Museum, a cornucopia of random things in cases for an afternoon of perusal. You’ll find this surprising exhibition space on the ground floor of the town hall and inside there’s a timeline of the town which was the main port.
You’ll find details about Penryn’s rise and demise as a port as well as information about ancient Glasney College, founded in 1265 and once the largest centre of religious power in Cornwall. It was mostly destroyed during King Henry’s dissolution of the monasteries in the 1500s and today the only surviving remains of Glasney are a length of wall and an arch which you’ll find at Glasney College Field where brick paths have been placed to mark the location of the original walls. Download this interactive QR trail to find out more while you’re there.
For a vintage fashion fix
Seek out the orange gates of Bohl’s Yard on St Thomas’ Street to find the vintage fashion mecca that is Penryn Vintage. From the perfect retro dress to reworked blouses and scrunchies, this is the place – currently open Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, or on request.
For the pub lovers
The Verdant taproom has fast become one of the best hospitality venues to visit, with events including live music, DJ’s and film showings. With 16 keg lines and 4 cask lines to choose from, you’ll be spoilt for choice on the drink front and they even serve brunch, lunch and diner including some amazing wood fired pizzas.
From waterside penthouses to cosy bungalows, Penryn has plenty of property to suit different requirements, and we are well placed to help you sell or purchase a property in this thriving town.