Best Cornwall Events May 2023


The summer in Cornwall starts in May! Well, it doesn’t because summertime officially starts towards the end of June but there’s always a start-of-summer feel in Cornwall every May as the weather warms and more events and happenings get into full swing. In fact, there are loads of different events across the Duchy in May. But are any of these May 2023 things to do in Cornwall any good? Of course there are and we recommend our favourites to you below…

It’s time to get excited as May’s highlights include traditional Cornish events 2023 like Padstow‘s Obby Oss festival and Helston‘s annual Flora Day. Plus, we give the full rundown of all the King’s Coronation parties and events in Cornwall and, as a bonus, we highlight the biggest Cornish festival outside of Cornwall in the world: Kernewek Lowender 2023. Add to this food festivals, drink festivals, a tarot and crystal healing festival, a literary festival, a tribute act festival, a Fowey Festival, a Roseland Festival and a beach-bound music festival headlined by The Kaiser Chiefs and you’ve got yourself a May full of awesome events.

There’s tons and tons going on if you’re looking for May 2023 events in Cornwall, so take a good look below. Always remember to click that yellow ‘Read More’ button on each listing, though, so you can get the full details and booking options. So, here we go: May 2023’s Cornwall event recommendations from your friends at Proper Cornwall

Obby Oss 2023 festival in Padstow

Date: Monday 1 May 2023 (the ‘Blue Oss’ appears at 10am and the ‘Old Oss’ arrives at 11am)
Type: One of the oldest festivals in the Duchy starring two ‘obby osses’ and plenty of colour
Suitable for: Anyone of any age, especially if you’re in your whites and reds and ready for a full day of fun and tradition!
Location: Throughout the streets of Padstow. Click on the ‘Read More’ below for more details…

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St Ives May Day 2023

Date: Monday 1 May 2023, from 12midday at The Guildhall
Type: May Day celebrations with a big parade and plenty of maypole dancing
Suitable for: Anyone who’s in town to see it!
Location: The Guildhall St Ives, Street-an-Pol, St Ives (and across the town from there!)

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Helston Flora Day 2023

Date: Friday 5 May 2023 (from 7am until late)
Type: Traditional festival dedicated to dancing, flowers and fun
Suitable for: Anyone in the mood for dancing and enjoying a traditional, upbeat Cornish festival
Location: Throughout the streets of Helston

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King’s Coronation events across Cornwall 2023

Date: Saturday 6 May 2023 (with Friday, Sunday and Monday events too)
Type: King’s Coronation street parties and events to mark the big occasion
Suitable for: Anyone, especially royal fans
Locations: All over Cornwall. Click on the yellow button and discover our round-up of the best events…

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Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour 2023 in Truro

Date: Wednesday 10 & Thursday 11 May 2023
Type: Two film nights dedicated to adventure, climbing, skiing, cycling and extreme sports
Suitable for: Fans of films that will leave you inspired and probably out of breath!
Location: Hall for Cornwall, Back Quay, Truro

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Tunes in the Dunes 2023 festival in Perranporth

Date: Friday 12-Sunday 14 May 2023
Type: Hot, hot, hot live music festival on a pretty Cornish beach
Suitable for: Music lovers who enjoy their festivals on a beach. With the Kaiser Chiefs. And Reef!
Location: Perranporth BeachPerranporth

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St Ives Food and Drink Festival 2023

Date: Friday 12-Sunday 14 May 2023
Type: Beach-bound festival with loads of top food, drink and music
Suitable for: Beach lovers, music lovers, foodies, drink connoisseurs and fans of the pretty Cornish town!
Location: Porthminster BeachSt Ives

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Fowey Festival 2023

Date: Friday 12-Saturday 20 May 2023
Type: One of Cornwall’s best arts and literature festivals, also known as the ‘Daphne Du Maurier Festival 2023’
Suitable for: Bookworms, music enthusiasts, walkers, culture vultures and Fern Britton fans (yeah, she’s there!)
Location: Various venues across Fowey. Click on the ‘Read More’ for the full details…

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Healing Light Festival at Heartlands, near Redruth

Date: Saturday 13 & Sunday 14 May 2023
 ‘Mind, body and spirit’ festival featuring tarot reading, crystal healing and holistic therapy
Suitable for: Anyone with an interest in holistic therapy (and with an open mind)
Location: Heartlands (Chi-An-Bobel Community Hall), Dudnance Lane, Pool, near Redruth

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John Dyer Gallery Exhibition 2023 @ Crypt Gallery

Date: Sunday 14-Friday 19 May 2023
Time: 10.30am-7pm each day
Type: Exhibition showcasing local Cornish artists and their recent works
Suitable for: Culture vultures and art buffs!
Location: St Ives Society of Artists Crypt Gallery, Norway Square, St Ives

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Kernewek Lowender 2023 (Australia)

Date: Monday 15-Sunday 21 May 2023
 The world’s biggest Cornish festival outside of Cornwall (yeah, we know this is on the other side of the world but hey, it’s great…)
Suitable for: Cornish people who want to toast their heritage in fine style on the other side of the globe!
Location: The Copper Coast, South Australia. Click ‘Read More’ for our full interview with the event organiser…

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Bude Literary Festival 2023

Date: Wednesday 17-Monday 22 May 2023
Type: Jam-packed literary festival with local authors, big comedy names, talks, walks, talks, gigs and loads more
Suitable for: Bookworms, kids, families, walkers, comedians, history buffs and anyone else for that matter!
Location: Various venues across Bude including The Castle Heritage Centre

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Falmouth Discovery Market starts on 19 May 2023

Date: Friday 19 May 2023, 10am-5pm, and (almost) every Friday thereafter
Type: Food, arts and crafts plastic-free market
Suitable for: Bargain hunters, eco-friendly shoppers and anyone who wants a good browse!
Location: Discovery Quay, off Bar Road and next to the National Maritime Museum CornwallFalmouth

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Party in the Park Tribute Festival 2023 in Newquay

Date: Friday 19-Saturday 21 May 2023
Type: Tribute act music festival with bands and artists for all tastes and ages (like the Spice Girls, above, from a previous year)
Suitable for: Parents and kids who love the best tribute acts for miles around (from Beyonce and Britney to UB40!)
Location: Monkey Tree Holiday Park, Scotland Road, Newquay

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GreenMatthews play St Endellion Church

Date: Saturday 20 May 2023 (from 7.30pm)
Type: A journey through 600 years of musical history inside the pretty Cornish church
Suitable for: Music lovers who want to go from the Middle Ages right up to the 20th century!
Location: The Collegiate Church of St Endellion, St Endellion, Port Isaac

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Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra’s brass octet play St Ives Guildhall

Date: Friday 26 May 2023 (from 7.30pm)
Type: Concert by the BSO’s brass octet. Click on the ‘Read More’ button below for the full details…
Suitable for: Music lovers, brass buffs and Bowie fans in this ‘From Baroque to Bowie’show.
Location: St Ives Guildhall, Street-an-Pol, St Ives

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Cornwall Street Food Festival 2023 in Newquay

Date: Friday 26-Monday 29 May 2023 (11am-10pm each day)
Type: Tasty street food festival with stunning views and live entertainment
Suitable for: Food lovers, beer bellies, music fans and families
Location: Barrowfields cliffs, off Lusty Glaze Road, Newquay

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See the Polly Joke poppies!

Date: Late May for a few weeks
Type: Bloomin’ marvellous spectacle. This isn’t a traditional event per se but we love them so much we thought we’d them here!
Suitable for: Photographers, romantics, botanists and gardeners. Anyone who wants to see poppies rolling out to the horizon…
Location: West Pentire’s headland to the east of Polly Joke Beach, near Newquay

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