River Fal boat tours & sailing experiences

We take time to discover the rivers nature and heritage

Intro & Covid-19
2 & 4 hour tours Private Hire Gallery Reviews

Our sailing trips & Covid-19



During 2020, we made modifications to the layout of our cockpit (seating area) to minimise households (us and you) being too close. We have also adjusted the focus of our trips to be primarily under power (as sailing requires much more movement in the cockpit) but we will always endeavor to get under gentle sail for a part of your trip.

When onboard, you may be required to wear a face mask as we will be complying with 1m+ rules as well as guidance from our governing body the RYA. You will be asked to use hand sanitiser before you board, please bring your own preferred brand ( although we will always have some available ). We will also ask you remain in your specified seat throughout the trip. Going down below will be limited to 1 person at a time where possible.

We also participate in the NHS track and trace system and all surfaces and hand holds will be thoroughly cleaned between trips.

We offer 'share the sail' or 'private hire' sailing trips.

Our trips are 2 hours, 4 hours and longer. We sail everyday in season, with start times that take best advantage of tides. All trips start at finish at Malpas near Truro.

For 'share the sail' trips of 2 hours or 4 hours we charge £20 per person and £40 per person respectively. There is no minimum number of people required for 'share the sail' trips, though you may be joining others if the group is less than our maximum capacity of 6.

If you want a more exclusive trip, private hire is available. 2 hour, 4 hour and all day trips cost £120, £240 and £420 respectively. This includes up to 6 people.

All of our sailing trips should be booked in advance.


We want you to have to best experience possible on the water so we will not sail when the conditions are unfavourable. This means we sometimes ask you to consider moving a booked sailing trip to another day. We typically sail in wind strength up to Beaufort force 4 (Moderate breeze).

All safety equipment included. Lifejackets for adults and children are available.



Our season typically runs between April and October. Trips are scheduled by contacting us with your desired date.

Morning, afternoon and evening trips are available, subject to tide times.

We recommend booking well in advance.

Enquire about a sailing trip in 2021

2 hour sailing trips £20 per person

Sailing barge Drifter in the River Fal

Explore the sheltered waters of the upper reaches of the River Fal in a very special way, onboard our beautiful barge.

Within moments of boarding at Malpas, you will be gently cruising along the rivers emerald green waters.

Amongst its steep and densely wooded shores lie discrete signs of its heritage and industry from ancient times to modern. Wildlife is abundant, with Herons typically seen foraging along the shore.

We use our quiet engine to explore the winding riverbanks and reaches. We also aim to get under gentle sail for part of the trip where nothing but the sounds of the water and watching the sails gently move us along will enchant you.

We keep things very relaxed. The experienced and knowledgable owners Neil & Debbie take care of all the sailing.

Your trip includes cruising down the river to the Trelissick estate passing Tregothnan, Tolverne and the King Harry chain ferry on the way. We then return up river to Malpas.

Alternatively, a longer 4 hour trip is available.

Enquire about our 2 hour sailing trips

4 hour sailing trips £40 per person

Sailing barge Drifter family sailing

A 4 hour (half day) sailing trip enhances your time on the water as we can tour a little further from our starting point.

Passengers on these trips have enjoyed the very best of the sailing area around Falmouth. The crew are happy to share their knowledge of its history and industry.

As well as the cruise included on our 2 hour tour, you will typically spend more time under sail in the sheltered waters of the Carrick Roads perhaps including locations such as Mylor, Restrongeut, St Just and St Mawes.

Occasionally, we will also be able to explore quieter parts of river, some rarely visited.

Where we sail and the distance we can cover is dependent on the wind and tide and is what makes every one of our sailing trips different. We have often been asked to stop at anchor on these trips, where there is time to enjoy the surroundings and lunch, or even a swim.

Enquire about our 4 hour sailing trips

Private boat hire

Sailing barge Drifter sailing past Trelissick

The barge is available for private hire for any duration from 2 hours to all day. Any itinerary and activity will be considered including special events, picnics at anchor, family and friends outings, river tours, wild swimming, romantic cruising, wedding transport etc.

The cost for 2 hours, half day and all day are £120, £240 and £420 respectively.

Note that we do not provide food and drink, and we welcome you to bring your own picnic hamper. We do have a BBQ on board.

Enquire about private boat hire

Day sailing trips

Sailing barge Drifter in the River Fal


Our 7 hour day sailing trips are very affordable at £420 and are private hire, with up to 6 people.

These trips give you the opportunity to fully absorb the beauty and spirit of the area, including its nature and heritage.

During a day sail we can explore most of the Falmouth area which can include the River Fal, St Mawes, St Just, Mylor & Falmouth. If the weather allows we can choose to sail out of the harbour and into Falmouth Bay. The day will include anchoring for a picnic lunch and swimming.

Our day sails are fantastic days out on the water, and we will consider any pickup/drop location, itinerary and activities.

Drifters seating and helm area is spacious, comfortable and a great place to socialise. The experienced crew take care of all the sailing.

You are welcome to bring along your own picnic hamper and drinks to enjoy. We do carry a BBQ on board.

Enquire about our day sailing trips

Sailing experience gift vouchers

Sailing barge Drifter experience voucher

A sailing experience is a fantastic affordable gift. You can gift a sailing experience of 2 hours or 4 hours which can be redeemed at any time throughout the sailing season (Spring, Summer and Autumn). A 2 hour sailing experience is £20 per person, a 4 hour sailing experience is £40 per person.

We can also produce vouchers for exclusive private hire from 2 hours to all day.

The voucher is presented on card in beautiful full colour, and is 6 x 4 inch. We are happy to include any personal message making the voucher even more special.

If you have received a sailing experience voucher, please get in touch about our sailing schedule.

Enquire about gifting a sailing experience voucher

Under sail...

The crew of sailing barge Drifter

Part of our tours of the River Fal include time under quiet sail.

We raise at least one of our sails and turn off the engine. The relaxing sound of the rippling water, watching the local wildlife and looking at the sail gently move us along will entrance you.

Drifter by name, Drifter by nature... we keep things as relaxed as possible.

Where we sail to, and how much time is spent under sail is dependent on wind direction/strength, also on tides/currents.

Trips in the upper parts of the River and creeks are usually performed under power but occasionally possible under sail.

The picture shows us sailing along in the rarely visited Ruan creek, which heads inland to the source of the River Fal.