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Things to do inPenzance

Visitor information for Penzance in Cornwall

  • Penzance
  • Penzance
  • Penzance

With its long promenade, lovely beach, delightful gardens and atmospheric harbour, Penzance ticks all the boxes as a desirable seaside destination.

Penzance gets its name from the ancient Cornish language: ‘Pen Sans’ means Holy headland and refers to the headland on the western side of the harbour on which a Christian chapel was built more than 1,000 years ago.

One of Penzance’s most famous citizens was Humphry Davy, best known as the inventor of the miners’ safety lamp, but also responsible for discovering the anaesthetic effects of nitrous oxide, or laughing gas. Born and raised in the town, a statue commemorating the man can be seen in Market Jew Street.

Notable buildings include the decorative ‘Egyptian House’ in Chapel Street, the old Market House built in 1837, and Penlee House, which houses the local art gallery and museum. On the promenade, the art deco Jubilee Pool is a splendid example of the popular 1930’s lidos: open from June until September the open-air, seawater pool offers superb views over Mounts Bay and is served by a poolside cafe.

The town centre shops will more than satisfy those looking for a little retail therapy, while intimate cafes, restaurants and bars are able to keep up the energy levels with tempting menus and cool drinks.

The best way to see all that Penzance has to offer is by taking a circular walk around the town and harbour.

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Latest Penzance Features

21 Apr 2017
Garden Glory There are more than 70 superb gardens in Cornwall and the milder year-round climate is perfect for growing ‘sub-tropical’ plants – many of which cannot grow anywhere else in the UK – and Cornwall abounds with lush gardens. In the last couple of centuries a distinct gardening tradition has developed in Cornwall. Wealthy landowners and industrial families sent sailors and plant hunters off all over the world to bring back samples of rare ... Read more...

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