Built and developed in late 1700 and early 1800, Charlestown is still a working port and has developed as a centre for tall ships and traditional sailing vessels over the past 20 years.
Although it receives much more footfall these days thanks to social media and better advertising it is still bypassed by many visitors and locals alike as it is not on the way to anywhere. Its easily accessed however via the Mount Charles roundabout and clearly sign posted.
Charlestown has long been a natural film set and has featured in too many films to mention, it was shortlisted along with the its resident tall ships for the original “Pirates of the Caribbean” movie and has hosted many of the Hollywood greats. Although it has recently changed hands the filming continues regularly and most recently some scenes for “Poldark” were set in the Port.
The Shipwreck and Heritage Centre is well worth a visit and is inexpensive lying on the North side of the harbour and the Greek Trireme berthed permanently on the hard up by the roundabout is hard to miss and a left over from the film “Jason and the Argonauts” and “Odyssey”.
During the summer months, there is so much going on in Charlestown, an amazing choice of eateries and bars, antique shops and art galleries. If none of these are for you then there are the amazing beaches, north and south and although not golden sanded, they are rugged, with great views out over St Austell bay.
During the winter months it’s a great place for an afternoon out and on a nice day there is nothing better than a tea party on one of its beaches, an hour or two beach combing or treat yourself to lunch in one of the various pubs. Some very beautiful tall ships use Charlestown as a winter maintenance port and is the permanent home to the Brig “Phoenix” a star in her own right having most recently been at the centre of the Moby Dick movie “Heart of the Sea”
There is a good-sized car park at the top of the village and it can be a great jumping off point for the coast path heading west out via the small fort on the headland it’s well worth.
Go and take a look for yourself - you wont regret it I assure you .
*Written by Capt Paul Kersey