Where might you find Alice in Wonderland, lifesize gorillas and stilt walking clowns? At the Marazion Festival which takes place the last Sunday in July each year! Follow the crowds that make their way down to Folly Field for some great events at this beachside location. There's plenty of parking nearby if you are driving down to Penzance from other parts of Cornwall.
Things to see and do at the Marazion Carnival
Each year Marazion lets its hair down and enjoys the noisy and colourful parade of floats that processes through the town. Crowds line the street and enjoy plenty of family entertainment after the procession is over. The Carnival runs from noon until about 6pm and is free to attend.
Live music, country dancing, magic shows, Punch and Judy, games, stalls and other children's entertainment makes this a fun day out for families, whether you live in Cornwall or are just passing through.
Organised competitions at the Marazion Carnival, such as the tug-of-war, are well worth watching and you certainly won't go hungry. Clotted cream teas, a barbecue, ice cream stalls, pasties and plenty of concession stands offer the usual fairground food and more besides.
Marazion Carnival has a colourful parade
As well as floats which are decorated to the annual theme there are school bands, brass bands and many local groups in fancy dress. Look out for stick-clashing Morris dancers, colourful zumba groups, drummers and an array of local vehicles which all take part in the noisy procession through the streets to the final Folly Field destination.
Follow the procession into the Carnival site and you will find live music from many Cornish bands such as The Cornish Wurzells, Kernow Vibration and the Slap Dash Trio. The Carnival puts on plenty of entertainment to keep youngsters happy including the Searchers Old West Re-enactment Team with their cowboy display.
Enjoying the fun can be thirsty work so there is a beer tent set up ready to add to the fun of the day. All around the Carnival field there is a funfair and stalls selling goods for charity, food and drinks. Take part in some of the games to help raise money for good causes.
Marazion and St Michael's Mount
Overlooking St Michaels Mount in Mounts Bay, I always enjoy looking around the pretty town of Marazion, either before or after the Carnival. It has some charming old cottages and inns along the main road which clearly show its age and interesting history.
After the Carnival, head down onto the sandy beach and enjoy the safe bathing and beautiful sea views. The bay is popular for windsurfing, kitesurfing and sailing and you may be able to watch or participate in some of these sports on a breezy day.
If you want to stretch your legs, you can walk along the beach to Penzance, about two miles to the west. You can also walk across the causeway in the footsteps of pilgrims to reach St Michaels Mount at low tide, but an admission is charged if you want to explore the castle and gardens. The splendid building on this rocky islet was built as a fortified monastery and is similar in style and purpose to Mont Saint Michel, just off the Normandy coast of France.
If you are staying in a holiday cottage near Penzance you will find Marazion has plenty of restaurants, bars and pubs offering home cooked food at competitive prices. Shoppers can browse the arts and crafts shops for gifts and souvenirs and art lovers will find plenty to admire in the town's galleries.
Are you planning to attend the Marazion Carnival or perhaps take part in it? We'd love to hear your comments. Do you know of any other carnivals taking place in Cornwall this summer? Do keep us posted with all the local news in our comments box below.