Charlestown, a timeless atypical port village on the south coast of Cornwall, England, is a treasure trove of touristic and cultural activity. With its botanical gardens, historic port, a fantastic geographical location and surprising scenery, and, of course, its shipwreck and heritage center, Charlestown is a haven of historical and cultural discoveries to visit at least once in a lifetime.
Europe’s largest collection of shipwrecks and historical artifacts, the items exhibited in the Charlestown Shipwreck and Heritage Center are the result of nearly 50 years of accumulation and come from several ancient eras and from no less than 150 shipwrecks. Amongst the most outstanding elements of the museum’s collection, the sections reserved for the infamous wreckages of the R.M.S. Titanic and H.M.S. Victory will undoubtedly captivate your mind and imagination. The entire exhibition covers a tremendous range of maritime history dating back to 1715 and includes items related to navigation, deep diving, treasure hunting and more. I was also pleasantly surprised to learn about the history of the village of Charlestown and its once flourishing China Clay industry. How the industry has shaped, this part of the country was fascinating and learning about the secrets of fabricating coated paper, the primary use of China Clay, as well.
Other sections of the Charlestown Shipwreck and Heritage Center cover the place’s history and its surrounding areas. There are always beautifully preserved ships anchored at the village’s harbor and the atypical scenery the timeless village provides is very often used as a movie set. With its port still active and the historical context of Charlestown, the village, and its surroundings are a perfect movie set to reconstruct historical dramas and adventures faithfully. Amongst the many movies filmed in Charlestown, the Three Musketeers is the one that interested me the most. I was even amused to watch the movie again to try to spot where some scenes were filmed.
The museum is open from March to October between 10am and 5 pm. So, I suggest you get there as early as possible because the visit of the museum and the activities around it will occupy most of your day, especially if you go with your children. For me, this museum is fascinating, covering many different periods of the past. For the cheap entry fee of 5 pounds, we especially appreciated the part of the museum dedicated to the sinking of the Titanic. I advise you to finish your visit by sitting on one of the tables of the Lovedays’ restaurant located above the museum to enjoy a good fresh beer in honor of the sailors whose history you just have learned!