Festive Events on the Roseland Peninsula - The Magic of a Cornish Winter

Winter is well on its way. Days on our Roseland Peninsula are growing shorter and nights longer. Sunlight grows paler and weaker as life slows down and the bustle of summer and the liveliness of autumn gives way to a slower pace of life.  Looking around at the bare trees of Kernow, the empty beaches and quiet hedgerows, it is easy to feel that we are also entering a silent, even an empty world - at least compared with the one we have left behind. But winter is not all that it seems to be. A different kind of light and warmth is waiting to be found if we look for it.


Along the empty beaches, on clear days, the sea and the sky merge across the Roseland Peninsula to make an unbroken canvass for the soft brilliance of the sun. The eyes of breathless children at play have a sheen that comes as much from the knowledge that their time in the sun is limited and precious as from the sharp, cold purity of the air. And on cloudless, frosty nights stars hang in the leafless branches of trees or sparkle from the frost on walls and paths.

roseland peninsula

As the pace of life slows with the slowing, dreaming things of earth, many artists will retire to their studios to begin new work, drawing on the stored reflections from a summer past to create new forms of light on canvass or paper. While, hidden behind closed doors, in houses and restaurants and pubs, firelight dances in hearths and draws people close in the shared warmth of the fire, of conversation and laughter, good food and good wine. We can still taste the summer in the glass of wine, the sharp cold of winter adding its particular spice to the palette.


The light of winter may be harder to find but it is right in front of you if you look for it. It has a special magic all of its own. And gatherings and events of all kinds on the Roseland Peninsula seem to borrow that magic. Festivals and fairs, exhibitions and events bring people flocking to experience it. If you are thinking of joining them, here are our top three for the next few weeks:

21st November, City of Lights, Truro


The name speaks for itself and this festival of winter light draws a crowd of more than 30,000 each year to usher in the coming season. Trams and buses will operate as usual although roads will be closed in the centre of the city from 3pm.


Organisers advise that restaurants and cafes will be open as usual - though booking a table in advance is essential if you want to eat in. Otherwise, there will be food stalls from 3pm on Lemon Quay, Boscawen Street. They also advise that good places for children can be found towards the top of Lemon St.

Discover the Made in Cornwall Christmas Market

29th November sees the Falmouth Christmas lights ‘Switch On’


Schoolchildren representing Falmouth’s primary schools gather at Events Square and then, joined by a choir, a band and Santa himself, parade to The Moor carrying festive decorations and withy lanterns. On the purpose built stage, they sing Christmas Carols prior to the ‘lighting up’. This is one Christmas lights event that is well worth attending. And you can even get there by boat from St Mawes - on one of the extra sailings being offered by the St Mawes ferry. (This is followed by a ‘real reindeer parade on November 28th.)

roseland peninsula

World Illustration Awards 2018


Definitely not to be missed is the exhibition of the World Illustration Awards 2018. This runs from November 17th 2018 to 5th January 2019 at the Falmouth Art Gallery. Showcasing the winning entries out of a record 3,300 competitors from 75 countries, the exhibits represent some of the best “professional and emerging illustrators from around the world”.


While there is no obvious connection between illustrative art and the light we have been talking about, it is there just the same. If you stand and watch, for just a short while, as someone become captivated by an exceptional piece of work you will see the light we are talking about. You will see eyes light up with surprise and delight and that light is as and brilliant and as heart-warming as any Christmas display!

If none of these appeal, there are many more concerts and workshops, Christmas Fairs and children’s activities across the Roseland Peninsula. Which are your favourites?