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Charlestown Shipwreck & Heritage Centre, St Austell

(4.2/5 based on 900+ reviews on the web)
Filled to the gills with information, Charlestown Shipwreck & Heritage Centre dives into the maritime history of the British Isles. The museum features the artifacts of over 150 shipwrecks dating from 1715, a large collection of underwater diving equipment, and a small mining display. The displays are interactive and kid-friendly. The theater shows a movie about Charleston harbor and its once thriving clay industry. If you’re hungry, stop on the top floor for a typically British afternoon tea. The museum parking is an affordable and convenient place to leave your car while you visit the rest of the city. Plan your visit to Charlestown Shipwreck & Heritage Centre and a wealth of other attractions, well-known and undiscovered, using our St Austell family vacation planner.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • I've spent a lot of time in Cornwall having family dotted all over, I've pretty much travelled the length-and-breadth of the county, been to all your major tourist attractions, and some minor ones too...  more »
  • Quaint little museum packed with loads of bits and bobs, all shipwreck-related! Fab place to learn about Charlestown's history. Well worth a visit! 
  • There is a lot to see here, the place is a little dated but packed with stuff to see and read about. It is really interesting to look at the history of the harbour it's self. 
Google
  • A very enjoyable visit, staff were welcoming and helpful. It was great to be able to take my dog into the museum...something not on offer in many places. The exhibits were interesting and informative. The restaurant above had a dog friendly indoor seating area which was very welcome as it was pouring with rain. Well done! I definately recommend you.
  • Lovely setting. Kids loved it. They have a quiz sheet for kids which everyone seemed to enjoy. Only down side is you get so caught up helping kids do the quiz sheet you aren't really looking at the whole exhibition
  • This is a very interesting exhibition, which has a range of different aspects to see. Besides the ship wreck history, it also covers the history of the port, the local China clay industry, the discovery and development of gas, ship building, deep sea diving and the RNLI. There is a mixture of animatronic, audio visual and static displays to tell the stories. All the areas are interesting, but you must be prepared to do a lot of reading to get the most out of the visit. That said a lot of the exhibits are very good and give a good insight into the dangers of our coast. More generally anyone with a physical disability will be best to follow route B. Route A through the tunnel is accessible for all, but it ends in a staircase and you must return up the long slope to re-enter the exhibition via route B. Parking can be difficult at most times, even out of season. There is a pay and display car park nearby or on street parking on the hill down to the Charlestown area. Allow at least an hour to see the exhibition and at least another 30 minutes to look around the quay area.
  • So much to see. Really needs more room for the amount of treasures it holds. Perfect for a rainy day activity.
  • Really interesting and good value for money. The views from just outside the tunnels are beautiful. There is a quiz for the children to do on the way round. Parking can be a problem.