Wondering what to do in Falmouth when it rains? It’s a thought that might occur all too often during the winter months, and even throughout the summer, as the coastal Cornish weather loves to be unpredictable. Luckily Falmouth is a vibrant town full of creatives and innovators, meaning there’s plenty of rainy-day activities to keep you entertained in Cornwall (and dry!).
What to do if it rains in Cornwall?
What to do on a rainy day in Falmouth?
Museums and Galleries in Falmouth
1 – National Maritime Museum
2 – Morgans
3 – Inspire Makers, Art Gallery
4 – Falmouth Art Gallery
5 – Phoenix Cinema
6 – The Poly, Cinema
7 – Jewellery Workshops
8 – Painting Workshops
Activities for Adults
9 – Shopping
10 – Foodie Day Out
11 – Spa Day at St Michael’s Hotel
Activities for Kids
12 – Raze the Roof
13 – Paint Pottery at Star Glazers
What To Do If It Rains In Cornwall
If you find yourself greeted by a bit of Cornish rain during your visit, fear not! Cornwall has a charm that shines through even under cloudy skies. Embrace the opportunity to explore the region’s cosy indoor attractions, such as the fascinating museums, art galleries, and historic sites that offer a captivating glimpse into Cornwall’s rich heritage. Alternatively, indulge in a bit of retail therapy in the charming boutiques and artisan shops that line the cobbled streets of towns like St. Ives and Falmouth.
For those seeking a touch of nature, the rain-slicked coastline takes on a uniquely dramatic beauty, offering spectacular views and bracing walks. And of course, there’s nothing quite like finding a delicious restaurant or cafe, where you can warm up with a steaming cuppa and savour a slice of local dishes. So, let the rain be your companion in uncovering a different, equally enchanting side of Cornwall!
What To Do On A Rainy Day In Falmouth?
On a rainy day in Falmouth, there are still plenty of enjoyable activities to partake in. Begin your day with a visit to the Falmouth Art Gallery, a haven for art enthusiasts, showcasing an impressive collection of local and international works. Alternatively, explore the fascinating National Maritime Museum, where you can delve into the rich maritime history of the region. For those seeking a more cosy experience, settle into one of the charming local cafes, like Provedore or Espressini, with a good book or some company.
Additionally, don’t miss the immersive experience at the Inspire Makers, which often hosts intriguing exhibitions and creative workshops. Finally, take a leisurely stroll along the historic streets, where you can appreciate the town’s architectural beauty, or perhaps indulge in some retail therapy at the independent shops nestled within the heart of Falmouth. Rain need not dampen your spirits; instead, let it enhance your discovery of Falmouth’s cultural and artistic treasures.
Our Top 13 Things to do in Falmouth When it Rains
Museums and Galleries in Falmouth
Before we talk about Falmouth, let’s mention St Ives. St Ives has a rich legacy within arts and crafts due to the pivotal St Ives artists making waves in the early 20th century, you can read more about this here. However, Falmouth was its less publicised sister town, flying under the radar but slowly and surely cementing its status as a Cornish town rooted in the arts. These days, Falmouth has arguably overtaken St Ives with regard to the contemporary artists working and exhibiting here. Falmouth has been home to the Falmouth School of Art, now Falmouth University, since 1902. This encouraged creatives from far and wide to nurture their practice and learn new skills, which still happens today.
Falmouth’s art galleries are brilliant to slowly browse and avoid the rain. Many showcase Cornish artists and makers, both emerging and established, and are run by independent gallery owners. Below are four galleries in Falmouth that we highly recommend visiting!
1. National Maritime Museum
With 15 galleries over 5 floors, the National Maritime Museum in Falmouth’s Event Square is a way to connect to the wild ways of the sea without getting drenched by it. The entrance to the museum itself is an awe-inspiring sight, with a hanging flotilla of historic boats hanging overhead, each with an impressive story. The galleries themselves showcase art and objects representing Cornwall’s maritime heritage, focusing on industry, work, and communications.
The museum is fantastic for families, as it really is a feast for the eyes with plenty of interactive features to keep kids entertained.
Relatively new to Falmouth, Morgans Art Gallery has already made a powerful impact on the town. The five-storey building in the centre of Falmouth was beautifully renovated by Ann Morgan and Tony Holmes, alongside their three daughters. The gallery sits across a series of open spaces, around a light filled courtyard dotted with olive trees. With around seven exhibitions a year, their focus is on Cornish-based creatives, and each show is a considered curation of artwork, ceramics and furniture. Passionate about encouraging and enabling artists to work in Falmouth, there are five studios above the gallery providing a perfect space for artists and makers to hone their skills.
3. Inspire Makers, Art Gallery
Forgive us for mentioning ourselves, but we’re so busy highlighting the artisans we stock the wares of, that we sometimes forget to mention the gallery! We have a dedicated gallery space, which hosts a year-round programme of monthly exhibitions. Founded and run by Vicki Glaister, each exhibition provides a platform to local artists, and is often their first opportunity to have a solo-exhibition. It has been wonderful to provide a launchpad for these emerging artists and watch their careers flourish afterwards. We maintain close connections with every artist who exhibits in our gallery, and they often come back to teach workshops or provide us with more artworks for the shop.
4. Falmouth Art Gallery
With over 2,000 artworks that range from Pre-Raphaelite and British Impressionist paintings, to contemporary prints and photography, the award-winning gallery houses one of the most important collections of art in Cornwall.
Their temporary exhibitions are always impressively curated, and the historic building itself with a library below, is well worth visiting on a rainy day in Falmouth.
One of our favourite guilty pleasures on a wet weather day is an afternoon cinema trip. Hide from the rain, cosy up inside with snacks and a great film. Falmouth has two brilliant cinema options, depending on what you’re after.
5. The Poly, Cinema
The Cornwall Polytechnic Society, or ‘The Poly’, was founded in 1833 by Anna Maria and Caroline, the daughters of the founder of one of Falmouth’s leading shipping agents. They intended to promote the arts and encourage industry, which they absolutely did. The Poly is a joy to visit, with its gallery and shop supporting local creatives, but the historic 160+ seat theatre is the star of the show.
Their interesting and eclectic programme of independent, art-house, documentaries and foreign films offers a couple of hours that’ll leave you immersed in the arts and forgetting about the weather.
New to The Poly is Solskinn, a fantastic bar offering coffee, bites, and cocktails, which can be taken into the theatre. We highly recommend an hour at Solskinn before watching your film, soaking up the atmosphere and trying their famous espresso martinis.
6. Phoenix Cinema
For more of a blockbuster experience, the Phoenix Cinema in Falmouth gives you the nostalgic cinema experience, with a wide range of the latest popular films, popcorn, pick & mix, and even a bar serving alcoholic drinks and hot food.
We look forward to the colder months, as our interests shift from outdoor activities to indoor activities in Falmouth, and we can work away on creative projects without feeling like we should be making the most of good weather.
Tapping into your creativity is scientifically proven to greatly impact your mental health, giving you a feel-good hit of dopamine, which boosts motivation and has positive knock-on effects. Taking part in workshops is a great way to gently socialise, learn a new skill, escape the daily routine, and put yourself first.
At Inspire Makers we have a workshop programme that explores various disciplines, all run by super friendly creatives that we know well at the gallery. The ‘kitchen table’ feel means we only have spaces for 6 people, and workshops feel relaxed and intimate. Escape the rain in Falmouth and revel in feeling creative.
7. Jewellery Workshops
We have regular jewellery workshops run by the very talented and very lovely Laura, the founder of Porth Jewellery. Laura will guide you through making your own jewellery, whether from sea glass or sterling silver, and you’ll leave with your own hand made jewellery. Made using traditional processes and tailored to fit and suit you perfectly, you’ll walk away with jewellery that connects you to Cornwall and to a memorable moment in time.
8. Painting Workshops
Want to begin your painting journey, but unsure where to start? Our painting workshops take the fear away, and focus on techniques which keep you relaxed and free, making marks and approaching painting joyfully. You’ll learn how to create your own studies, and you’ll feel inspired to keep painting and keep learning! It never fails to amaze us how much power that first workshop you take part in has, whether it gives you confidence to start your own practice, or you find a new hobby that helps keep you calm in the chaos of life, the benefits of creative workshops cannot be overstated.
Activities for Adults
The largely linear layout of Falmouth’s high-street means it’s blissfully easy to visit and browse without endlessly getting lost and doubling back. Whether you start at the Greenbank end or the National Maritime Museum end, you’ll encounter so many independent shops, galleries, eateries, and interesting venues. You’ll find Inspire Makers at the top of the Old High Street, towards Greenbank, so please pop in and say hello, we’ll help you shelter from the rain!
Falmouth’s largely independent high street nurtures collaboration and community, and is a diverse and high end destination for shopping in Cornwall. So much so, that we have a whole blog dedicated to the best shops in Falmouth.
The high street is home to eclectic antique shops, concept stores run by creatives, art galleries, vintage shops, gifting stores, and there’s even a bookshop within a bar!
10. Foodie Day Out
Falmouth’s café’s, pubs and restaurants are magnificent, and we’re not just saying that. The high street is peppered with a fantastic selection of independently owned eateries, many of which offer something unique, and have won many awards.
For a family friendly lunch or dinner, we suggest The Meat Counter, The Stable, The Boathouse, Chainlocker, Fuel and Gylly Beach Café. Alternatively there are plenty of Cornish pasty options for the ultimate quick lunch.
If you’re looking for somewhere special to eat in Falmouth, great evening options are Restaurant MINE, Bodega Tapas, Provedore, Amanzi, The Orgia, Wilder Kitchen, Verdant Seafood Bar, Indidog, and Hooked on the Rocks.
11. Spa Day at St Michael’s Hotel
St Michael’s Hotel and Spa is a luxury resort in Falmouth and is famed for its beautiful and calming spa facilities. Nestled in sub-tropical gardens, you can enjoy their pools, sauna, steam room, and treatments and relax while the weather is whipping up a frenzy outside. To make a day of it, enjoy drinks and food in their stunning dining areas and enjoy views of the sea from their cosy interiors.
Activities for Kids
Falmouth is very family-friendly, and incredibly dog-friendly too! But if you’d like specific kids activities, we recommend the below.
12. Raze the Roof
Just on the outskirts of Falmouth, you’ll find Raze The Roof, a soft play, virtual reality and laser tag arena guaranteed to exhaust some energy! Complete with a mega play frame, slides, climbing wall, ball cannons, and astro-glide, it’s a great place for the kids to keep themselves entertained while you enjoy refreshments and a breather in their café.
13. Paint Pottery at Star Glazers
Located on the picturesque Old High Street, Star Glazers is a pottery painting café for both adults and children of all ages. Choose from a wide range of ceramics and get creative with their non-toxic and food-safe paints and glazes. We often walk past Star Glazers on our way into town, and it’s always a happy hive of creativity and full of smiling faces.
So there we are, our top tips for rainy days in Falmouth. Don’t be too disheartened if the weather turns, as there is so much to do and explore and fill your days with. You’ll have soaked up culture, creativity, great food and interesting stories, much better than soaking up the rain.