Famous for its idyllic appearance and ancient fisherman’s cottages; Polperro is a picturesque fishing village located in The South-east Cornwall area. Now a popular tourist destination, Polperro was first recognised as a fishing settlement with its first known record in the form of a Royal document dating back to 1303.
Polperro also has a rich smuggling history which is thought to have prospered from as early as the twelfth century. It reached its peak in the late eighteenth century when Britain’s wars with America and France drove up the taxes on imported goods, thus making it worthwhile for fisherman to boost their income by the illegal import of goods such as spirits and tobacco. Smuggling continued successfully for many years and was controlled by a local merchant (Zephaniah Job – the smugglers banker), but by the early nineteenth century Customs and excise had implemented a more efficient and organised coastguard along with hefty penalties for those caught smuggling goods, thus meaning that the trade soon dwindled, and fishing once again became the main source of income for villagers.
For centuries to come the village survived as a pilchard fishing and processing port. The fish were salted and pressed, and any oil was collected as an extra by product and used for heating and lighting. By the 20th century stocks had diminished, and pilchard fishing was no longer the mainstay of the industry. Today there are still 12 working boats fishing from Polperro, but the main source of income for the village is now earnt through tourism.
Things to do in Polperro...
Polperro Smugglers Museum
If the brief account of Polperro history has been of interest to you, be sure to take a trip here to get a more detailed and informative description of village facts and history. The museum is open between 10am and 4pm from April until October. All profits made by the museum go back into the general upkeep of our harbour - which is one of few harbours in the country to be solely owned by the local community.
Polperro Model village and Land of legend
A true replica of our village in miniature that has been entertaining families since the 1940’s. Having survived fire and floods this famous Polperro attraction continues to delight families of all ages. Open April until October.
Situated right on the South West coast path there are wonderful walks in both directions from or to Polperro; with Looe being an easy to moderate 5 miles and Polruan and Fowey being a more hilly and challenging 6.5 miles. Our location right in the middle of the two makes us the perfect stop off for some much-needed refreshment. Surrounded by all this natural beauty you will never struggle for things to do whilst staying in Polperro.
Located midway between Poperro and Looe; Talland Bay is an easily accessible beach for all the family. With lovely clear water to swim in, rock pools to explore, parking, toilets and a lovely beach café with shop and kayak hire, Talland has all you need for a fun family day out.
Things to do in Cornwall...
We kid you not, Cornwall has it all...Beautiful beaches, The Eden Project, Stunning harbours and coves to explore and an endless list of fun activities that you can enjoy with your family and friends.
Polperro's location just a short distance from the A30 and A38 mean that the best of Cornwall is right there, just waiting for you to discover it. Follow the link for a list of favourite things to do and must-see attractions - visit.cornwall.things-to-do
Places to stay in Polperro...
If you're looking for a cottage in Polperro, we have plenty of friends who can find you a place to stay. Follow the links below for more info and accommodation options;
You can also find out lots more about Polperro history, things to do and places to stay (including B&B's and Campsites) on the LovePolperro website.