Salcombe to Torquay Walking Blog

The Salcombe Ferry

Friday 19th October 2018:

Drove from St Mawes to Totnes where we parked our car on Jubilee Road (as recommended by our taxi driver, we them took the taxi to Salcombe (cost £45) to our b&b Waverley.  The lady of the house was out but we were met by her husband and showed to our room in the basement.  Perfectly nice room.  We ate at the Crab Shed, which was a decent walk, but if you like crabs well worth it.

Saturday 2oth October: (Salcombe to Chillington about 16 miles)

After a nice breakfast and chat with the landlady we set off down the hill to catch the ferry.We were a little early so had a morning coffee and then bought sandwiches at a deli (these turned out to be a bit disappointing! the bread was not fresh).  We then caught the ferry (see above) across the river to East Portlemouth.  The weather was glorious and the walk out of the estuary and along the headland was spectacular.

Views across the mouth of the Salcombe Estuary

There was a possible stop for refreshments at Garra Rock, but this involved a bit of a detour and we had a long way to go so we walked on finally sitting down on the path just short of Start Point to have our lunch. After we rounded Start Point the path changes character from cliff edge to more gentle (initially a bit of road).  We school parties in the car park and various holiday houses before arriving outside the Cricket Inn at Beesands, where we stopped for a drink before turning inland to walk to Chillington House for our overnight stop.  This walk seemed quite a slog at the end of a long day, but the B&B was very nice and we ate supper at an excellent pub in the village “The Bear and Blacksmith” (very popular you need to book)

Sunday 21st October (Torcross to Dartmouth 10 miles)

After an excellent breakfast we bumped into the man who had come to move our bags and he very kindly agreed to give us a lift to Torcross.  Not only that but it turned out he was a local expert on the Slapton Sands disaster that had befallen the troops when they had been practising for D-day.

So he gave us a little tour of the memorial in Torcross and a short history lesson.

Slapton Sands Memorial Sherman Tank

We then set off down the long beach

Slapton Sands

to our morning coffee stop at a little beach cafe.

Slapton Sands Beach Cafe

There followed some inland walking through some villages before dropping down to the Venus Cafe at Blackpool Sands, where we had lunch. From there it was a headland walk round to Dartmouth Castle and there we had a lovely cup of tea while watching boats coming and going. After a short walk into Dartmouth we arrived at Browns Hotel where we had treated ourselves to their suite on the top floor.  We ate at Kendricks a lively restaurant serving local seafood and burgers.

Monday 22nd October:  (Dartmouth to Brixham 11 miles)

With sandwiches bought at the local co-op we caught the ferry to Kingswear and set off on a spectacular day of quite challenging  headland walking.


We had lunch sitting on a deserted beach.


When we arrived in Brixham we headed to our accommodation at Sampford House Bed and Breakfast.  Very friendly owners welcomed us and showed us to a excellent room.  We ate dinner at The Old Market House (nothing special).

Wednesday 24th October:  (Brixham to Torquay 8.5 miles)

This is a very suburban section of the coast path and can be easily bypassed by taking one of the very regular buses from Brixham, however we walked it and it felt at times a bit like going back in time to a traditional English seaside holiday.  Countless ice cream stalls, fish and chip shops, burger bars etc.  Torquay is a large sprawling town and not my favourite, we stayed at Ferndale Lodge.  Torquay is big enough that we had to take a taxi in the evening to go to our restaurant.  We treated ourselves to The Old Vienna Restaurant where we were entertained by the owner and chef and found his Austrian style cooking very agreeable.

Thursday 25th October:  (Torquay to St Mawes)

Unlike most places the coast path visits Torquay has a very active taxi service and it was easy for us to catch a taxi to the train station in Paington.  There we discovered that the train service to Totnes was not running, however right opposite was the bus station and an excellent bus service took us to Totnes where we found are parked car for the return journey to St Mawes.