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Helford River

The Helford River is a delightful unspoilt estuary stretching from the outer edge of Falmouth Bay up to the old port of Gweek.

In the broad lower reaches open fields run down to a rocky shore dotted with little beaches. On the north bank the beautiful valley gardens of Glendurgan (National Trust) and Trebah (privately owned) lead down to Durgan village and Polgwidden Cove.

Polgwidden Cove is south-facing and tidal. The view opens up a wonderful maritime scene, of small sailing boats moored in the waters, a shingle beach and rock pools. A perfect place to skim stones. In 1944, the beach was used as an embarkation point for a regiment of 7,500 of the 29th US Infantry Division for the assault landing on Omaha beach, part of the D -Day Landings.

Where the river narrows, Helford on the south shore and Helford Passage on the north are still linked by a pedestrian ferry that has been in operation since the Middle Ages. This part of the river is now largely given over to yacht moorings, with a handful of active fishing boats.


Porth Navas

Around the corner from the Helford River is Port Navas, where hugh granite blocks were once loaded for shipment to London and where the Duchy Oyster Farm is now thriving again. Further up river, past the oyster beds and beyond Frenchman's Creek (inspiration for Daphne du Maurier's well known book) to the south and Polwheveral to the north, ancient oak woods line the banks creating a truly timeless atmosphere.