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The pretty Cornish village of Polperro has been a fishing port since at least medieval times and a magnet for visitors, including artists, for as long as anyone can remember. Narrow streets between quaint old flower-decked cottages mean that tourists are not able to drive their cars to the harbour, but there are carriages available – and boat trips too, when you get there. The village’s name probably derives from the old Cornish ‘porth’ for ‘harbour’ and means ‘harbour of a man called Pyra’, but what is certain is its notoriety for smuggling in the 18th and 19th centuries – which has contributed to a rich folklore and is illustrated in the Polperro Heritage Museum of Smuggling and Fishing overlooking the harbour. Pilchards, apparently, were once a particular speciality for Polperro’s fishermen, while other members of the family were employed in processing them. It is still a working fishing port as well as a popular tourist destination. There is an annual Art Festival in June and the village has a renowned Fishermen’s Choir.
NB Don't rely on your Sat Nav - park outside the village and walk or take a carriage to the harbour.