There is plenty to look forward to next week when the Tall Ships Race comes to Falmouth - even before the racing begins. 

From going onboard a tall ship to seeing the crews and lots of live music, there's an action-packed schedule between Tuesday and Friday, both on and off the water. 

Tuesday, August 15  – Thursday, August 17, from 2pm

Get onboard the tall ships

The Class A vessels will be located within the A&P Falmouth Docks. Ticketed entry into the Docks to then go onboard these will take place on the first three days of the event – August 15 to 17.

Gates open for the public from 1pm, with access onto the ships from 2pm. Volunteers and Liaison Officers will be on hand to guide and support members of the public and there will also be a host of food, drink, charity stalls and pop-up events taking place on the Docks as thousands of visitors take the opportunity to see the magnificent ships up-close.

Tickets to access these ships are on sale and are be priced at £5 for adults and £2.50 children.

People are strongly encouraged to purchase tickets online and in advance from here:

READ NEXT: Falmouth Tall Ships Race: what it's about and which ships are coming

Free Live Music Programme

Across the whole four-day event, visitors and residents can experience a lovely range of free music from local bands, shanty groups and choirs. This will take place across three sites; Events Square, Church Street Car Park and The Docks.

Tuesday, August 15 – Thursday, August 17, 12pm – 4pm

RNLI Historic Lifeboats

Several impressive historic lifeboats will be on full display on ‘North Quay’, Custom House Quay and visitors can take advantage of free guided visits, RNLI donations welcome.

Wednesday 16th and Thursday 17th August from 10.30pm

Lights & Laser Show*

Across various locations throughout Falmouth, visitors will be wowed by an enchanting free lights and laser show. The spectacle will be visible from all points between the National Maritime Museum Cornwall down to the Greenbank Hotel.

*Weather permitting.

Wednesday, August 16

Crew Parade and Inter-ships Crew Sports Day

A very busy day for the ships’ crew…

Crew Parade From 4.30pm

The ships' crews’ parade gets underway from Falmouth Docks, making its way through Falmouth, taking in Arwenack Street Church Street, Market Street on its way to The Moor, before returning back to Events Square.

Crews are encouraged to wear fancy dress or their ship’s uniform and bring along the crew musicians to add to the excitement. Falmouth Marine Band will lead the throng followed by young people from Falmouth Sea Cadets and Falmouth Rugby Club.

Inter-ships Crew Sports Day Falmouth Rugby Club, from 9am – 2pm

The ships’ crews take each other on in fun-fuelled games of five-a-side football, volleyball and tug of war. Teams of up to eight from each vessel will battle each other at the Rugby Club in knock out leagues.

The Rugby Club will be open for all to come and cheer on the teams and refreshments will be available.

Tuesday, August 15 - Friday, August 18

Family fun and markets on The Moor

Farmers plus food and craft markets will be on show and selling their wares on the Moor throughout Tall Ships.

Tuesday, August 15 – Thursday, August 17

Arts and crafts on Church Street Car Park

To complement the free music, festivalgoers can also take time to visit the arts and crafts market to buy hand crafted products made by local artisans and food producers.

Friday, August 18, 3pm 

Parade of Sail

The spectacular Parade of Sail will take place on Friday, August 18 at 3pm.

Prior to the Falmouth race start to A Coruna, Spain, the tall ships, along with hundreds of supporting local boats, yachts, and marine craft, will sail in company from their moorings, along the coast past Pendennis headland and Falmouth’s beaches. 

This is a truly fantastic spectacle, one not to be missed and it can be viewed from several coastal vantage points in and around Falmouth or from the water.

Where can I watch the Parade of Sail?

From 3pm the Tall Ships will showcase their finery in the magnificent Parade of Sail.

The Parade of Sail can be seen from St Anthony Head on The Roseland right along the coast to Rosemullion at the entrance to the Helford River. 

On land

The recommended viewing areas are Cliff Road, Pendennis Headland, Castle Beach, Gyllyngvase Beach, Swanpool Beach, Maenporth Beach, Rosemullion Head, St Mawes and St Anthony’s Head, and the coast path.

From the water

It’s an incredible experience to witness the Parade of Sail from the water.  However, please follow these safety guidelines:

· Make sure your craft is suitable and loaded sensibly.

· Keep a safe distance from other vessels, particularly the tall ships.

· Always use a kill cord and ensure that it is attached to the skipper of the boat.

· Be aware of your surroundings as there will be many vessels out on the water.

· The Parade of Sail will be very congested and therefore the sea state will not be suitable for SUPs or kayaks.

· Please keep well clear from the ships in the parade and pay attention to the marshalling vessels.

· RNLI “Know the Risks” page -

Tall Ship Partner Events

There are a number of venue partners who are working with the Town Team to lay on some great activities:

Falmouth Art Gallery – King Arthur

A ground-breaking free touring exhibition. From 10am.

Pendennis Castle – Pirates!

With shows, demonstrations and workshops, plenty of pirate fun for the family! From 10am-5pm.

Fives Cyderhouse

Live music gigs throughout.

Tall Ships National Maritime Museum Cornwall

Major exhibition exploring the popular culture behind pirates. Not to be missed. From 10am - 5pm

St Michael’s Hotel

Live music gig from ‘Our Atlantic Roots’ on Friday, August 18, from 1pm - 3pm

Falmouth Uncovered

Acclaimed guided walking tours through Falmouth throughout the four days.