Cornwall is a magical place to spend the festive season, whether visiting in early December for festive markets and events, during Christmas week or for a New Year getaway Prepare to be enchanted by dazzling displays of colourful lights, which illuminate Cornish harbours, towns and villages. Watch spectacular lantern processions, listen to angelic voices singing carols (and join in yourself too) whilst warming your hands with a hot chocolate or mulled wine.
Read on to discover some of the wonderful Christmas light switch-on events in Cornwall this year.
Falmouth’s festive lights – Thursday 25th November
Festive fun in Falmouth begins at 5pm when children from various local schools and singing groups gather in Events Square for a spectacular lantern procession. Santa will also join the procession which will move through the town towards the Moor. After the procession and Christmas carols, the big festive lights switch-on will take place on the Moor at 7pm.
Bodmin’s spectacular lights & festive events – Friday 26th November
For their light switch on this year, the Cornish town of Bodmin has a busy evening planned with carols around the tree, Bodmin Town Band, Street Theatre, Santa’s Workshop, music throughout Main Street and of course, Santa in his sleigh! After the lights have been switched on by Neil Caddy from Pirate FM, enjoy an evening of late-night shopping.
Newquay’s Christmas lantern parade & light switch-on – Friday 29th November
Festivities begin at 3pm with family entertainment, live music and sing-along carols. The lights will be switched on at 7pm, followed by a firework display over the bay at 8pm. There’s also late-night shopping and plenty of restaurants, bistros and bars to retreat to for a refreshing drink or delicious meal.
Mevagissey’s magical lights – Saturday 4th December
Head down to Mevagissey harbour for 4.30pm to eat, drink and be merry, enjoying the live entertainment and wonderful community spirit. At 6pm the lights will be switched on and will illuminate the pretty harbour with colourful twinkling lights. Later, Mevagissey’s welcoming pubs and eateries offer somewhere cosy to retreat to. We recommend car sharing or arriving early as car parks will fill up.
Christmas lights in Cadgwith Cove – Saturday 4th December
This little event is full of community spirit and is sure to get you in the festive mood. The lights are expected to be switched on at around 6pm, after which you can enjoy a warming drink in the local pub. Cadgwith Cove is an unspoilt fishing village which almost seems to have frozen in time and the Cadgwith Cove Inn is a traditional Cornish pub where you’re sure to feel right at home.
St Ives lights and Santa by lifeboat - Friday 3rd December
Head into St Ives on Friday 3rd December and you'll be in for a real treat - Santa will be arriving by lifeboat on the high tide at 6pm! After greeting everyone, Santa will make his way to the Royal Square to switch on the lights between 6.45-7pm.
Angarrack’s animated 12 days of Christmas lights – Saturday 4th December
Angarrack is a small village in West Cornwall with a huge reputation for Christmas lights. This is a true community event where everyone gets involved to make sure the whole village becomes a winter wonderland. Wrap up warm and explore the streets of Angarrack – the lights will guide the way! See how many of Santa’s reindeer you can spot and seek out the partridge in a pear tree and the 11 other brilliant displays that tell the story of the 12 days of Christmas.
Looe’s torchlight procession and festive lights- Saturday 7th December
From 6.30pm there will be two processions of twinkling lights, both making their way from East to West Looe. The final destination is the Quayside Centre where there will be some jovial carol singing followed by the big festive light switch-on, including displays on the harbour and the colourful lights and shining star on the Christmas tree.
Mousehole’s famous harbour lights – Saturday 14th December
The Mousehole Harbour Lights are some of the most well-known Christmas lights in Cornwall and beyond. This year will be slightly different with a ‘soft switch on’ due to the ongoing issues with Covid. It is anticipated that all displays will be completed and lit by mid-December. Stroll through the village and enjoy the twinkling lights before stopping off for a tipple in the pub.
Cornwall’s Christmas lights will stay up throughout the festive season, so why not go and see them during your festive Cornish break? Find holiday cottages with availability during Christmas week here>