The town is situated between Kit Hill and Bodmin Moor. A former agricultural market town, it lies at the intersection of the North-South Plymouth-Saltash-Launceston-Bude road and the East-West Tavistock-Liskeard road.
From Kit Hill, there are far reaching views of the River Tamar, Dartmoor, Bodmin Moor and Plymouth. Along with the town's mural trail they have proven to be popular with wandering tourists. Callington lies between four larger towns (Launceston, Liskeard, Tavistock and Saltash) and many inhabitants commute to Plymouth via the Tamar Bridge.
The town was formerly served by a railway station at Kelly Bray. Callington station was the terminus for a branch line that ran to Bere Alston where it joined the Southern Railways Tavistock to Plymouth line. The railway line beyond Gunnislake to the Callington terminus was closed in the 1960s, due to low usage and the fact that the final sections of the line had several severe gradients and speed restrictions which made operating difficult. It is still possible to travel by rail on the Tamar Valley Line from Plymouth as far as Gunnislake via Bere Alston, where trains reverse. For most of its journey the line follows the River Tamar.
Callington is the home of the Worldwide Headquarters of Ginsters, and the famous Ginsters Pasty Factory. Ginsters is the largest employer in the town today and employs hundreds of locals as well as many immigrants who have arrived as a consequence of the recent accession to the EU of a number of Eastern European countries.
Cornwall is a predominantly low wage economy with a high proportion of its income being derived from agriculture and tourism.
The civil parish of Callington lies within the Caradon District.
In the 18th century, Callington was one of the most important mining areas in the United Kingdom. Deposits of silver were found nearby in Silver Valley. Today many old mining stacks dot the horizon, but there are no active mines apart from some granite quarrying on Hingston Down.