Gyllyngvase beach

View map of beach Parking available Toilets available South West Coast Path Dog friendly RNLI lifeguard cover May 18 - September 29 Beach cleaned regularly Blue Flag

Season: spring

Bright sunshine and high pressure greeted me at Gyllyngvase beach.  Morning visitors were enjoying a reminder of the sea air before work, sharing the beach with dog walkers and swimmers.  The Gylly Beach Cafe was already open for breakfast and Falmouth was waking up. Welcome sunshine lit the rising tide, a respite after recent winter storms.

Spring visit photo gallery


The beach as a link to the sea and fishing for John, who also highlights its place in the community.  You can learn more about the Shark Trust here.

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Bright sunshine and a rising tide at Gyllyngvase beach.

Season: autumn

It’s always a pleasure to visit this high octane Falmouth beach, particularly on a bright weekend morning when it’s a hive of activity.  As a town beach, it holds a natural attraction for townspeople, with volleyball nets, a popular cafe and a safe swimming environment.  The tide was low during this visit and there was plenty of space for everyone, both in and out of the water.  There are pleasant gardens by the beach too, with fine views to enjoy over Falmouth Bay as you look round from Pendennis Castle to the Helford Estuary.

Autumn visit photo gallery


Mary explains what it’s like to swim at Gyllyngvase (see Peter also, lower down on this page).


A view of the beach from the rocks at low tide.

Season: spring

A mountainous sea thundered against Gyllyngvase beach for this early spring visit.  Icy winds and a morning chill set the tone.  An ebb tide clawed at the sand, leaving thirty feet of trace on the sand before returning to the beach.  Above the sea, an apocalyptic sky, with clouds full of snow, threatened to add its contents to the elemental mix.

Spring visit photo gallery


The attraction of the sea for Matt.


A wild morning at the beach.

Season: summer

A bright morning on a low tide set the large ships in Falmouth Bay in relief against an azure, flat sea.  Early morning swimmers reminded me of paintings from the Alex Katz exhibition, showing at Tate St Ives this summer.  I had filmed in the atrium there in the spring; here it is.

Summer visit photo gallery


Sisters Victoria and Vanessa, enjoying nature’s bounty at Gyllyngvase beach.


The beach in the morning.

Season: spring

Bright sunshine greeted me on this visit.  The spring morning had attracted swimmers and walkers alike.  The beach had its seasonal fixtures in place for the summer – volleyball pitch, sand pit, trestle tables and lifeguard viewing platform.  As the tide fell away on the steep beach clean breakers crashed onto the sand, a raw energy to start the day.

Spring visit photo


John explains the release the beach gives him.


By the sea in the morning, looking out across Falmouth Bay to start the day.

Season: winter

It was a mild January dawn return visit, with the sea and sky grey blue against the sand.  Being a town beach, there were plenty of people about.  The atmosphere was one of routine and regularity, fitting a beach visit into a hectic schedule.  Both interviews show the deep affection held by people for being at the beach.  Falmouth is such a buzzing town at present.  I highly recommend a visit.


Peter’s relationship with the water at the beach from an aesthetic perspective.


Victoria, at Gyllyngvase beach early in the morning.


A mild, grey blue vista at dawn.

Season: autumn

Another famous Cornish beach, this is the main Falmouth leisure beach, looking out to the south over Falmouth Bay and the tankers waiting for orders or bunkers.  Gyllyngvase is popular all year round.  Autumn is usually very mild in Cornwall and the weather was outstanding during this visit. The beach was at its best.


At the water’s edge on Gyllyngvase beach.


Watching the swimmers.


A spectacular panorama.

3 thoughts on “Gyllyngvase beach

  1. Rebecca

    Having not grown up by the beach the sea has always signified the beginning of a holiday for me. When going on our family trips we always screamed out and had a competition of who could see the sea first, probably a clever technique to keep your children quite when they’re getting a bit repetitive saying ‘are we there yet?’  Now I live on the coast I try to remember how lucky I am to have all the Cornish beaches to explore, though I often think I don’t make the most of it.

  2. Mary Lynn

    I grew up near the equator in Kenya and spent holidays on the beaches of the Indian Ocean with their warm white sands stranded with exotic shells and rock pools of brilliant fish, so I’m afraid I was spoiled for life where beaches are concerned.  That’s not to say the Cornish beaches aren’t a delight, particularly in the low season when dogs may play and everyone smiles a greeting.  Still, it’s the walks along the coast to the beaches with great vistas opening out and always something of interest on the horizon I find most exhilarating..

  3. Mark

    Gylly Beach means walking your dog on a bright winter’s day; it means enjoying food with friends on a hot summer’s day; it means talking strolls in howling winds, watching people scream as they run in for a quick dunk. Its a meeting place, a place to forget the worries of the day, a place to visit, a place to put the smile back on your face and by far a place to escape.


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