Mevagissey Aquarium

Image courtesy of Salty Gecko and Matt Facey

In Brief

Type: Sealife attraction
Suitable for: All the family
Address: Inner Harbour, Polkirt Hill, Mevagissey
Price: Free
Dog friendly?: Yes

Aquariums don’t need to be big. They can be pretty bijou and contain enough jewels of the sea to both entertain and enlighten visitors. Mevagissey Aquarium is one of these sorts of treasures with enough sea animals inside to interest old and young alike. Plus – and we all like to hear this – it’s free. But donations are, of course, encouraged.

Mevagissey Aquarium lies on the opposite side of the harbour in the quaint fishing village to Mevagissey Museum. It’s actually a charity project which is devoted to raising awareness and ‘bridging the gap’ between the fishing industry and the general public. The animals on display within its walls are all local and help visitors to understand what gems there are out in the waters beyond the harbour.

The aquarium began life in Mevagissey in the 1950s but the building it’s housed inside goes back to 1897. It was once an RNLI lifeboat station that stored three lifeboats up to the 1930s. It changed use many times over the following years – including becoming a gun emplacement during the Second World War – but for more than 70 years now it has been packed with marine life like many species of fish that are local to the area, as well as crabs, lobsters and starfish.

An array of educational events are held throughout the year at Mevagissey Aquarium, often aimed at kids, and there are also details on the village’s maritime history to learn all about during your visit. Small can be mighty and this fascinating little spot is the perfect stop-off after a cream tea, Cornish pasty or, er, plate of local fish…