Ten Interesting Facts About Truro
November 26th, 2021
If you’re looking for a stop on your Cornish holiday that is rich in local culture and history, then look no further than the city of Truro in the centre of Cornwall.
With its cobbled streets and narrow alleyways, Truro offers a range of experiences for shopping, learning about history and eating!
To celebrate this great city and all it has to offer, we’ve made a list of our top most interesting facts about Truro.
1. Truro is the only city in Cornwall
When someone says the word city, it conjures up images of places like London or New York – great and expansive urban jungles complete with skyscrapers and all night traffic. But that’s not always the case.
Despite having a population of 568,210 and an area of 3,563 km2 (1,376 sq mi), Cornwall only has only one city, Truro, which is famous for its ancient cobbled streets and Gothic and Georgian architecture. It gained its city status in 1877, three years before the building of the Truro Cathedral was started.
2. Truro is named after its three rivers
It’s been said that the name “Truro” is actually derived from the Cornish term “Tri-veru”, meaning three rivers. There are, in fact, three rivers that run through Truro: the Kenwyn, the Allen and the Truro River, which joins the River Fal further downstream.
Another theory suggests the name Truro is derived from the term “Tre-uro”, which means “settlement on the River Uro”.
3. There is a direct train from Truro to London Paddington
Now there’s even more reason to choose Cornwall as your next staycation destination!
The journey can take anywhere between four and a half to six and half hours and offers passengers a marvellous scenic route along the South Devon coastline. The train also stops in Exeter, Bristol, Bath and Reading.
4. Truro Cathedral is one of only three cathedrals to have three spires
It’s very uncommon for a cathedral to have three spires, and there are only three in all of the UK that do. These are:
- Lichfield Cathedral – a medieval cathedral dating back to the 13th and early 14th century.
- St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral – a Gothic revival style Cathedral built in Edinburgh in the late 19th century.
- Truro Cathedral – another Gothic revival style Cathedral that was completed in 1910.
5. Roger Taylor grew up in Truro
While he was actually born in Norfolk in 1949, Roger Taylor, drummer for the legendary rock band Queen, actually grew up in Truro.
While he was there, Taylor actually formed his first band at the age of seven with a group of school friends. They were called the Bubblingover Boys, and Roger Taylor played the ukulele. At 15, he became a member of the Reaction, a semi-professional rock band formed mostly of boys from Truro School, which Taylor also attended.
6. Truro was built from the tin and copper industry
Truro was able to rise in prosperity and reach city status thanks to the tin and copper trade. During the 14th century, a port in Truro was established so that metals mined in the surrounding areas of Cornwall could be exported overseas. Truro soon became the central hub in Cornwall and beyond for trading in tin but also slate, copper, cloth and grain.
7. Truro is part of an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
We all know that Cornwall is a stunning place full of rolling fields and coastlines, perfect for a postcard, but did you know that Truro and its 220 acres of land has actually been declared an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty?
As well as being home to a wide variety of natural plants and wildlife, there are also a number of astounding gardens near Truro, including Tregothnan and Trelissick Gardens.
8. There is more than one Truro in the world
Like plenty of other towns or cities in the UK, Truro also has a couple of international counterparts. There is the town of Truro in Massachusetts, USA and the town of Truro in Nova Scotia, Canada.
9. Every year Truro hosts ‘The City of Lights’
This event is one of the biggest to take place in Truro all year! It begins with the initial switching on of Truro’s Christmas lights and then continues into a lantern parade.
The parade takes place every year, and each time the lanterns tell a different story full of music and dance. School, community groups and local artists all come together to entertain crowds of over 30,000 spectators along the route.
10. The population of Truro is only 20,000
For a city, the population of Truro is rather low at only 20,920 as of 2021, which is even lower than that of Truro’s nearest town, Falmouth, which has a population of approximately 22,000.
The vast majority of the population is made up of over 60s, as the city makes for a great retirement spot. However, in recent years, there has been an influx of business and young entrepreneurs that have moved to the area.
We hope this list of interesting facts inspires you to make Truro one of the prime stops for your next Cornish holiday. If you’re looking for places to stay, our luxury holiday village in Cornwall near Truro is an ideal choice!
10 Great Short Walks in South Cornwall to Try This Spring
March 25th, 2019
Spring is the perfect time to take a short break in Cornwall and discover some of the county’s fantastic scenery on foot. We have listed 10 of our favourite short walks in south Cornwall which are within easy reach of our 5-star cottages in Cornwall. While many of the walks listed can be extended to make a full day at each location, you can also accomplish several of them within a single day out, allowing you to pack as much into your holiday as possible.
Porthcurno to Logan Rock
Distance 1 mile
Start Porthcurno car park, grid ref SW288223
Porthcurno is a classic Cornish beach. The golden sand is surrounded by a host of strangely shaped rocky outcrops, and it’s thought that this is what gave the place its Cornish name – “cove of horns”. On the western side of the beach is the Minack theatre, where during the day you can pop in and have a walk around. The coastal path to the east of Porthcurno is the real star of the show, however, winding along the cliff edge towards the Logan Rock. There are plenty of opportunities to clamber around and investigate the outcrops in this area; the granite forms conceal all manner of pools, nooks and crannies. There is a great beach just west of the Logan Rock promontory, with an impressive sandbar that moves every year.
Newlyn to Penzance
Distance 2 miles
Start Newlyn harbour, grid ref SW464286
The seafront promenade at Newlyn makes for a lovely stroll, and both the lido and the art gallery are well worth a visit. This part of Mount’s Bay affords great views back across to St Michael’s Mount and is the mainland home of the Scillonian ferry.
Distance 1 mile
Start Rinsey car park, grid ref SW593276
Rinsey is a delightful mix of seascape, landscape, mining heritage and natural history. Take in three old engine houses with world heritage site status plus close-up views of rare plant life, and further afield the enigmatic Bishop Rock in the Scilly Isles. You might see ponies grazing, choughs displaying or even dolphins playing. As from Penzance, the views to St Michael’s Mount are quite stunning.
The Lizard Coastal Walk
Distance 7 miles
Start Kynance Cove, grid ref: SW703125
The Lizard peninsula is the most southerly point of mainland Britain, and on a blustery day, it certainly feels exposed. There are hidden gems on this route, such as Kynance Cove, home to a great little cafe complete with a turf roof and wool insulation with its welcome as warm as the interior. This area is famous for its wildlife where seals and basking sharks can often be seen. The views from this stretch of Cornwall are magnificent: the coastline starts to soften from this point east, so make the most of the imposing cliffs.
North Helford Countryside Walk
Distance 4.5 miles
Start Bosveal car park, grid ref SW775275
The Helford estuary is a stunning sight, particularly rewarding if you are an early bird, as you often get a beautiful hanging mist just after dawn. Glendurgan is home to a great maze, so take care – you might unintentionally lengthen your walk! A favourite stretch is from Porth Saxon beach out to Rosemullion Head, as the transition from wooded riverside through to rocky outcrops provides a great backdrop to this walk. The real highlight, however, is the views across Falmouth Bay to Henry VIII’s castles at Pendennis and St Mawes. If you catch the right season, then the wildflower meadows on Rosemullion Head make this the perfect spot for the nature lover as well as the amateur historian.
Trelissick to Roundwood Quay
Distance 4 miles
Start Trelissick car park, grid ref SW835395
Nestled on its own peninsula, Trelissick is almost surrounded by water and has direct access across the river Fal via the amazing King Harry chain-driven ferry. You will be surprised at the size of the vessels that get this far upriver to be worked on by the numerous boatyards. They’re anchored in the deep water channel and provide an unexpected twist to any walk in this area. And, as with many of our sites, there is a depth of history at Trelissick – you walk from the Iron Age fort past the industrial quay. The tidal mudflats are home to all sorts of wading birds, which you can spot while you’re hidden out of sight in the woodland. There’s also a lovely National Trust cafe to refuel in Trelissick.
Percuil Picnic Walk
Distance 1 mile
Start Percuil car park, grid ref SW858341
This gentle, rolling landscape is a real contrast to the crags of West Penwith. The sandy beaches are relatively sheltered from the prevailing swell, which seems to give this area its own microclimate. You could extend this walk by setting out from Porthscatho and heading south-west, all around the south coast of the peninsula, until eventually you round the headland and come back up the inland waterway, with its views over to St Mawes from St Anthony. The change from the rise and fall of the landscape behind the beaches through to the wooded riverside offers a fascinating journey.
Gribbin Head Walk, Fowey
Distance 4 miles
Start National Trust car park at Coombe Farm, grid ref: SX110512
One of the finest natural harbours in Cornwall, Fowey offers all that a sailing haven should – with the bonus of good pubs and good food. The walking around this area is fantastic – the exposure of the Gribbin, steep craggy coves, beautiful beaches and stunning grassland meadows, it really does have it all. When the sea mist rolls in you can see why Daphne du Maurier was drawn to this location and set several of her books here.
If you strike out east rather than west you can catch the ferry across to Polruan and then take in the equally stunning coastline towards Lansallos, the unspoilt campsite here is well worth a visit and a cracking cream tea is on offer at Lansallos Barton Farm. Lantivet Bay and Lantic Bay are a reward for the intrepid – a steep path winds down to the latter beach, but the rewards are instantaneous.
Details for this Lantivet Bay circular walk are:
Distance 3 miles
Start Frogmore car park, grid ref SX156518
Whitsand Battery to Rame Head
Distance 2 miles
Start Wiggle car park, grid ref SX410513; finish at Rame Head lookout, grid ref SX422487.
An often overlooked spot, Whitsand Bay stretches from Polperro eastward to Maker Heights. The walking in this area is surprisingly tough, but for those who do take it on the views are stunning. The bay is home to two Napoleonic forts (or Palmerston’s Follies), and there are a couple of great little cafes (one has its own cable car delivery system). You will never tire of the breathtaking views from the headland across Plymouth Sound towards the Yealm Estuary and the Mewstone.
Cotehele House to Quay and Mill Walk
Distance 2.5 miles
Start Cotehele House, grid ref SX423685
The Tamar Valley offers one of the most magical places to explore on foot; it provides the natural boundary between Cornwall and Devon and contains a wealth of history. This area became famous for its market gardens and mining, both well serviced by the navigable reaches of the Tamar. Cotehele was at the heart of the activity, with a bustling quay, lime kilns and market gardens on all the suitable slopes. Today, it’s a fantastic place to explore on foot. Start on the quayside, perhaps with lunch in the Edgecumbe arms and a wander around the historic barge, Shamrock. The gardens are beautiful and frame some of the most magnificent views down this mighty river. The wider estate is steep but well worth the effort when you stumble upon the Chapel and Prospect Tower.
Will you be embarking on any of these exciting walking route adventures this year? Reach out on our social media channels and let us know your favourite walks in Cornwall!
Why Cornwall in January is a Special Time to Visit
December 13th, 2018
As the frost covers the moors in a sparkling blanket and the winter sun lights up the beaches, you may think Cornwall in January is even better than in the summer months. And with so few holiday makers there, it will feel as if you have the whole county to yourself when staying at our luxury cottages in Cornwall.
After the busy Christmas and New Year period, a winter break in January with your loved ones is just what you need to leave the stresses behind. Especially when relaxing in a hot tub with a glass of wine in hand!
Come to Cornwall in January and enjoy:
The Beaches to Yourself
Wrap up warm and walk along the deserted beaches as the waves roll in. With the seasonal dog bans lifted, your dog is free to run about as they please. More often than not, you won’t see another soul the whole day! Take the chance to snap up some great pictures of the gorgeous seaside scenery while the sand is packed with surfers and sunbathers! With so many beaches in Cornwall, there are plenty of spots to head to walk off your Christmas indulgences.
Deliciously Warming Foods in Local Pubs
Warm up from the winter chills with a mug of hot chocolate at a local café or a pint in the local pub by a roaring fire and fill your belly with delicious hearty food after a trek through the frosty moors. Cornwall has plenty of great choices for food enthusiasts, with many restaurants and cafes making the most of delicious locally sourced produce.
Plenty of Exciting Indoor Activities
Being January in Britain, we certainly cannot promise rain-free and sunny days, so the likelihood is there may be a day or two on your holiday that you have to head indoors. Cornwall has many fantastic artistic centres to visit, such as the Falmouth National Maritime Museum, where you can stay warm and dry. Many of Cornwall’s historical locations can also provide some shelter, with most remaining open all year round. Learn about Cornwall’s rich history as you visit the medieval castles, Victorian mansion and a range of mines.
Walks in Nature
Pop on a hat and scarf and go walking through Cornwall’s woodlands and country trails. The whole family will love following nature trails and looking out for the bright red breast of robins. As the month goes on watch in wonder as nature starts to wake up from its winter sleep – you might even see snowdrops starting to emerge!
Quaint Villages While They Are Quiet
Explore the atmospheric fishing villages along the coastline, relax and do a spot of shopping in the January sales. The boutique and independent shops in the quaint little villages are great ways to while away a lazy afternoon. The narrower streets will be less busy at this time of year, allowing you to see the sites at your own pace.
Will you be joining us in Cornwall this January? Let us know what you’re most looking forward to about this special time of year!
How to Spend New Year’s in Cornwall
December 05th, 2018
Stuck for something to do this New Year’s? Treat yourself to a five-star cottage in Cornwall for a fantastic holiday with family and friends, welcoming in the new year in style! Cornwall is a fantastic location, with lots to do throughout the year, and New Year’s Eve is no different. Below we take a look at some of the best events happening in towns and cities near our holiday cottages:
Cornwall voted as one of UK’s most Romantic destinations
February 10th, 2015
With Valentine’s Day looming a new report by Hotels.com shows we’re definitely in the right place for some passion on February 14 with the Duchy being voted one of the most romantic places in the country.
According to the Destination Romance Report, London and the Lakes came top and were joined by the Lake District, Cornwall, Cotswolds, Edinburgh, Stratford-upon-Avon, York, Devon, Bristol and Cardiff.
Hull, Birmingham and, weirdly also London were voted the least romantic places with Hull taking the top spot at the other end of the scale with a fifth of Brits dubbing it the least romantic destination in 2015.
Malcolm Bell from Visit Cornwall said: “If you talk to a lot of people and travel around the country talking about Cornwall they will always tell you their memories of Cornwall – and those memories come from holidays. There is a lot of affection for Cornwall.
“Overall we create those memories because we have such a beautiful part of the world to live in and such a wonderful way of life.
“People want to come down here and experience it and we’re lucky enough to stay here – but they’ve got to go back to their other lives.
“It’s special for millions of other people as well.”
Carolina Annand, from Hotels.com which did the survey said, “It’s always great to see where we want to whisk our loved ones away to for some romance this Valentine’s Day. With numerous new cities now featuring in both our lists, it is clear that those who previously held the top spot are working hard to prove they can be romantic too.
“Last year’s number one least romantic city, Slough, has been able to avoid the top ten list altogether this year – other locations need to show that romance can be found in the most unlikely of places as well.”
So if you are looking to impress your loved one this year then why not head to The Valley, offering some wonderful romantic breaks in Cornwall.
Abandoned rare black seal pup arrives at Cornish Sanctuary
December 09th, 2014
A rare black seal pup is recovering at Cornwall Seal Sanctuary in Gweek after being found abandoned on Porthellick in the Isles of Scilly. The baby seal, only around 2 weeks old, has been named ‘Badger’ by staff at the sanctuary and arrived in a sorry state with a number of injuries which were probably caused by other seals who rejected him due to his unusual colouring.
The good news is that after as course of antibiotics and plenty of attention from the staff at Gweek, Badger is making a strong recovery and is now well enough to be moved to the centre’s Nursery Pools where guests staying at The Valley’s 5 Star cottages Cornwall will be able to catch a glimpse when visiting over the Christmas holidays.
Team Supervisor Tamara Cooper is hopeful that the little pup will be fit and independent enough by March next year to resume life in the wild. Commenting on his unusual colouring she added, “Black pups are very rare and more usually found in the Scottish population. We haven’t had a black pup in Cornwall since 2007.”
Goodbye traffic jams, hello Cornwall!
December 03rd, 2014
The government has confirmed that plans to improve stretches of the main road link into Cornwall are to go ahead over the next five years. The £180 million plan will see two notorious traffic bottle-necks eased with the building of dual carriageways. The first of these is a 7.7 mile section between Carland Cross and Chiverton Cross, with a further 3.1 mile section over Bodmin Moor between Temple and Higher Carblake.
With more than 85% of visitors to Cornwall arriving by road, long queues of traffic on these sections of the A30 has become an iconic image of Summer for many of those using this transport artery for both business and pleasure in recent years. The announcement of these improvements has therefore been particularly welcomed by those in the tourism industry, who feel that a faster and better serviced road link into Cornwall can only help to make the region more attractive to potential holidaymakers.
Malcolm Bell, chief executive of Visit Cornwall commented “We have seen the short break market retracting towards Bristol and we think that’s in large part due to traffic issues. If we see a 10% increase in the short break market as a result of these improvements that would bring in an extra £50 million a year to the Cornish economy”.
The benefits of improving the road journey into Cornwall will be particularly welcomed by those travelling on holiday with pets according to David Reynolds, general manager of The Valley self-catering resort near Truro. “Those considering a holiday, and especially a short break, at The Valley’s dog friendly accommodation will certainly be pleased with this news. No dog owner wants their pet to be cooped up in a vehicle for any longer than absolutely necessary, especially in warm weather, so removing these bottlenecks will certainly help our two legged and four legged guests to arrive with us feeling happier and more relaxed which is a much better way to start a holiday. I’m sure this will help us to see more dog owners prepared to make the journey to Cornwall in the future.”
Top 4 Cornish Christmas markets
November 17th, 2014
With Christmas just around the corner, the local Cornish markets are getting ready to share their festive cheer.
Whilst staying in your luxury cottage in Cornwall be sure to visit one of the quirky market stalls which sell the loveliest hand crafted Cornish gifts.
Here are our top four Cornish Markets:
MADE IN CORNWALL CHRISTMAS FAIR
Wednesday 26th to Sunday 30th November 2014
Made in Cornwall Christmas Fair – 26th to 30th November 2014.
To truly get you into the Christmas spirit why not start with the Made in Cornwall Christmas Fair. Held in nearby Truro, it’s only a short drive from your luxury family friendly cottage. Stall holders will only sell Cornish products, from food hampers to jewellery; this fair will give you the perfect chance to find that special gift. The 26th is also the start of late night shopping so you can carry on until 9pm and enjoy the Christmas entertainment.
FOWEY CHRISTMAS WEEKEND AND MARKET
Saturday 6th & Sunday 7th December 2014 10am to 4pm
A little bit further from your luxury cottage is Fowey Christmas market. This market could be the feature of your short break in Cornwall and you could start the weekend of festivities by visiting the pretty harbour town of Fowey. Markets, entertainment, food and drink, plus a visit from Santa are all set to feature.
OUTLAW CHRISTMAS MARKET
Thursday 11th – Saturday 13th December 2014
This market is perfect for all craft lovers – it’s an artisan craft market with a difference. Inspired by the contemporary, indie craft fairs in American a mother and son set about creating their own market. Taking place on the Moor in Falmouth and with over 30 local artisan makers and producers this fair is definitely one to visit. (See www.outlawcraftfair.co.uk for further information)
HEARTLANDS CHRISTMAS MARKET WEEKEND
Saturday 13th – Sunday 14th December 2014
Heartlands Christmas Market is set to be a festive extravaganza of delicious treats, local products, creative makes, artwork, jewellery and much more. Festive music from local choirs and brass bands make this one of the great things to do in Cornwall. With free parking, an outdoor adventure playground and Café this is a great family day out.
Santa and his reindeer are heading to Cornwall
November 10th, 2014
It may seem weeks away, but the festive season is fast approaching. When you are taking your short break in Cornwall, Truro is a must visit to see its spectacular lights and quirky shopping markets.
On the 26th November Truro will see a herd of reindeer, and of course Santa too, making their way through town to kick start the City’s late night Christmas shopping. You will be able to see the reindeer getting ready from 6pm at Victoria Square before the start of the procession at 6.45 which will take about an hour.
Camborne Youth Band will be leading the procession followed by Carnon Downs drama group in their pantomime costumes.
After the you’ve met the reindeer and given Santa your Christmas wish list why not join in with some of the local singing groups and spread the Christmas cheer.