River Fal boat trips and tours 2021. Truro, Cornwall.

Sailing barge in the Helford River, Tremayne Quay.

We are very much looking forward to 2021 and are busy preparing our traditional sailing barge for another season of river trips and tours.

From the Spring, you will again be able to join us on-board ‘Drifter’. During 2020, we adapted our barge layout and what we do on the water and feel confident that this year we will be able to share with you the enchanting, winding and sheltered reaches of the river.

Our trips will, of course, be subject to any social distancing rules that are in place at the time, but we have considered this thoroughly and are offering our full range of trips, from ‘share the sail’ tours of 2 or 4 hours to ‘private hire’ from 2 hours to all day.

Update: March 2021

The government announcement with regard to the staged easing of coronavirus restrictions mean we can offer our trips again from the 12th April.

12th April onwards, private hire will be available with a maximum of 4 people from a single household only.

17th May onwards, ‘share-the-sail’ trips will be available with a maximum of 4 people, limited to two households.

21st June onwards, we will be hoping to return to our maximum of 6 people onboard from mixed households, subject to the government review of social distancing.

It will still be necessary to be COVID-secure onboard so we are introducing the following terms and conditions.

  • Sanitise hands on boarding and throughout the trip.
  • Face coverings to be worn.
  • Each household is asked to remain in their designated seating throughout the trip.
  • The interior of the barge will not be available until June 21st earliest.

This year we also introducing something new! Evening trips are now on the agenda. The river becomes much quieter and the gorgeous evening light amplifies the beauty of the river. So why not consider bringing a bottle of your favourite chilled bubbly and some flutes along with you, as we gently cruise along the upper reaches of the river in style.

Where possible, we schedule our day time trips with favourable tides. Depending on how much time we have this sometimes allows us to explore rarely visited arms of the river, where hidden hamlets or abundant wildlife can be found. On longer trips we can also spread our wings in the wider part of the Fal estuary known as the Carrick Roads, ringed by St Just, Mylor, Restronguet and Feock.

We aim to get under gentle sail for part of your trip which allows you, for a moment, to experience a closer connection to the nature of the river. This is an aspect of the trip that we have had to consider the most during the pandemic, as sailing requires us to move around the various lines and winches as necessary, often putting us in close proximity to our passengers. In 2020 we chose not to sail at all, but we are hopeful that in 2021 the sailing element of our trips can be gently reintroduced.

Our trips are not only about the river, exploring its beautiful reaches, discovering the nature and heritage, myths and legends and discrete industry; it is also about being onboard an equally beautiful sailing barge with a history and story of its own. The barge was built on the shores of the Ijsselmeer in the Friesland province of the Netherlands and we still fly the province flag from our masthead which serves as our very reliable wind indicator.

Between April and September, our ‘share the sail’ trips and private hire trips are available seven days a week, dependent on weather. If the forecast is not so good we may ask you to move the trip to another day, as we want you to have the best experience possible on the water.

If you are thinking of joining us on-board, please get in touch to schedule your trip.

Our trips start and finish in Malpas, just a short distance from Truro. The local pub here, the Heron Inn, has a fantastic reputation for its friendliness and food; the view of the river from its terrace is also amazing. Our passengers often begin or end their trip there, or go onto walk along the quiet banks of the Tresillian river towards St Clement.

Although there is a dreadful virus in our midst, there is also tremendous hope that vaccines will allow us to no longer put our lives on hold and will enable us to begin to regain our sense of adventure and freedom. Nobody can say how long it will take to return to somewhere near ‘normal’ but there are definitely clear blue skies ahead amidst the stormy covid clouds.

We look forward to seeing you on-board ‘Drifter’ in 2021. Stay safe and happy travels.

More information about our trips can be found on our website http://www.sailingbargedrifter.co.uk