Dartmouth Shakespeare Week has become one of the most important annual cultural events in South Devon. With last years...
The countdown is on as we head towards the end of the year and fast approach 2021. The past year has been challenging for many of us, and New Years Eve provides the perfect opportunity to reflect and reset. As the country continues to navigate Covid-19, no large gatherings or events are on agenda, and so New Years Eve in South Devon will undeniably feel a little different this year. Don’t worry though, because there is still plenty of fun to be had and you will find a wealth of things to do this New Years Eve in South Devon – it can be just as festive, celebratory, and meaningful as years past. With the right amount of planning, you can enjoy an incredible New Years Eve in South Devon from the comfort of your self catering holiday cottage and the natural playground that is South Devon.
There are so many different ways to welcome this new calendar year, regardless of how you prefer to spend your time – from brunch on the beach and spectacular sunset spots, to night walks and ice cold sea swims, New Years Eve in South Devon suits just about everyone (including the dog!), so you’re bound to find a few celebratory ideas you love! The team at Coast & Country Cottages are big fans of New Years Eve in South Devon, so much so, we want to share with you our top 10 things to do before the clock strikes twelve…
Use our quick links below to navigate the content, or read on for a handpicked selection of things to do on New Years Eve in South Devon…
– Brunch on the beach
– Host a wine tasting evening
– Dress in sparkles, shimmer, glitz and glamour
– Watch the sunset somewhere epic
– Embrace the outdoors
– Put your feet up and order a takeaway
– Explore the myths and legends of Dartmoor
– South Devon attractions perfect for children
– Set your dreams and intentions for 2021
– Night time wildlife walk adventure
At Coast & Country Cottages, dining al fresco is one of our favourite things to do, and we are certain you’ll want to include it in your plans for the last day of the year. Contrary to popular belief, cooking an outdoor feast in the depths of a British winter is really quite easy, although we highly recommend keeping it simple, and a little pre cooking always helps too – nothing beats a freshly cooked hotdog with a warm marshmallow chaser, especially when consumed on South Devon’s sandy shores. Don’t forget to bring a festive tipple, being sure to pack the picnic champagne flutes and pour a mimosa, it’s never too early for bubbles on the beach. Read our South Devon Beach Bible to find your perfect New Years Eve in South Devon beachside brunch spot.
In lieu of ringing in 2021 with dozens of friends, guest lists will be limited to the people who live in our households, so why not plan something special for the evening and host a New Year’s Eve in South Devon wine tasting evening. You don’t have to be a wine tasting expert, so long as the main focus is about having fun, and learning a little along the way too. Try and focus on what it is you like about the wine, and don’t worry about getting it wrong, especially with something as personal as taste. At the beginning of the evening, hand out the scoring sheets and taste each wine one by one – making sure to only pour an ounce or two into the glasses so you can really swirl the wine around well. After you’ve tasted and scored all the wines, ask guests to list their favourite one, and then reveal which wine it is! Given the number of guests being somewhat smaller this year, why not host it like a dinner party, or for a more relaxed vibe, settle down in front of the fire.
To really kickstart the evening, you could even apply a theme. It comes as no surprise that our immediate thoughts lead to local wine and food. Not only is it a great opportunity to sample smaller, less commercial wines from local winemakers such as Sharpham Wine, but you could also compliment the wine with locally sourced food from Devon farmers markets, or from local farm shops. For something with a European feel, why not opt for an Italian night, or a French night – the options are endless! South Devon’s wine supplies are rife, and you will always find yourself within close proximity to sumptuous wine establishments – Barrel and Still, Dartmouth Wine Company and Wine and Greene are just a few of our favourites.
Just because you’re ‘staying in’ for New Years Eve in South Devon doesn’t mean you have to dress down (although if you want to, you absolutely should!) and personally, we think the more sequins, sparkle, glitz and glamour the better! If you don’t have something to wear, then don’t worry, because South Devon is jam packed with independent stores and boutiques, and let’s be honest, who doesn’t love an excuse to indulge in retail therapy. Busby & Fox, Jam Industries and Cocoa are just a few of our favourite clothing shops, but we highly recommend visiting the bustling towns of Dartmouth, Salcombe, Kingsbridge and Totnes so that you can make your own mind up!
South Devon is graced with some of the most beautiful landscapes in the country – our coastline is varied, and includes secluded smugglers coves, jutting headlands and expansive sandy stretches, and our rambling countryside is positively thriving. The team at Coast & Country Cottages are well seasoned sunset fanatics, and just a few of our favourite locations to watch the sun climb behind the horizon include Bantham Beach (especially when it drops behind Burgh Island), South Milton Sands, Mothecombe Beach and Prawle Point, but as you can imagine, the options are endless! Some of our self catering cottages take in panoramic sea views, whilst others provide a picture perfect country escape, and are nestled in the gentle folds of rolling hills – all perfect for catching the last of the golden rays. For the ultimate sunset experience, pack a warm flask of hot chocolate, head into the great outdoors and watch the ‘big ball drop’ South Devon style.
An Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, it comes as no surprise that South Devon is a popular adventure playground amongst outdoor enthusiasts. You will find exciting and exhilarating activities to enjoy in abundance, even on New Years Eve in South Devon! If you want to release some feel good endorphins on the last day of the year then good for you, there really is no better pick me up and nothing feels better than stepping into the new year feeling healthy and raring to go! Spend your time exploring a myriad of South Devon walks, surfing, kayaking, paddleboarding, and if you’re feeling particularly brave then wild swimming in South Devon is a popular pastime.
There is no denying that one of the most enjoyable aspects of New Years Eve in South Devon is the opportunity to gorge on delicious food, and for many, it’s seen as the last big indulgence before the health kick of the New Year begins! South Devon is a food lover’s heaven, so why not sit back and let someone else take care of the food – this year… South Devon’s local business takeaway and delivery service is second to none, meaning you can enjoy your favourite Devon delights from the comfort of your holiday cottage. From mouth-watering fish and chips to pub classics and even spice infused Indian dishes, you will find something suited to every palate. Our top tip is that when ordering a takeaway, or delivery to your door, we highly recommend ordering with plenty of notice to save disappointment.
Within just one hours drive of the South Hams, you will find the wild and rugged Dartmoor National Park. Dartmoor is the perfect place to head for a daytrip, and aside from exploring a variety of wonderful Dartmoor walks, you can expect to spend your time letter boxing, geo-caching, climbing and even horse riding! Dartmoor is also the setting of many ancient tales, myths and folklore – for centuries the Dartmoor folklore and legends have encompassed tales of pixies, ghosts, witchcraft and strange happenings, and these have been passed down through the generations via fireside stories, books and local traditions, keeping the spirits very much alive today. If you’re feeling up for an adventure, then head to Dartmoor and spend New Years Eve shrouded in the thick mist that rolls in at sunset, and witness the mystery and magic come alive.
When it comes to attractions, South Devon really packs a punch with its offering, and best of all, they are open on New Years Eve, so why not treat the family to a fun and action packed day out! We are lucky enough to have Devon’s largest theme park on our doorstep – just a few miles from Dartmouth you will find Woodlands Theme Park which boasts an array of outdoor attractions and also the largest indoor play area in the UK, spanning over 125,000 square foot – needless to say, this is extremely popular with families throughout the South West! If you would rather an animal focused adventure, head to Pennywell Farm near Buckfastleigh, where you will get up close to an array of cuddly animals, miniature pigs included! A little further afield, Paignton Zoo is hosting ‘The Great Big Brick Safari’ which is a perfect New Years Eve in South Devon activity. In the city of Plymouth you will find the National Marine Aquarium, where you can get up close to an array of marine life, including nurse sharks and huge barracuda! The Dartmoor Otters and Buckfast Butterflies farm is also open, and if you time your session well you will be able to help at feeding time too. This year in particular, all attractions require pre booking to ensure maximum safety and compliance with Covid-19 rules and regulations, so be sure to plan ahead.
As cliche as it may sound, setting positive intentions for the year ahead prove to be the ultimate springboard to becoming the best version of yourself. Furthermore, people who write them down are over 40% more likely to achieve them, so be sure to have a notepad and pen to hand and get scribing. The start of a new year is a great opportunity to reflect on your growth of the previous year, and what an unprecedented year 2020 has been! Whilst the list of potential dreams and intentions is limitless, try and focus on a passion, random acts of kindness, go somewhere you’ve never been before (perhaps one of our favourite secret Devon beaches) disconnect in nature and be sure to do something that scares you (why not book an exhilarating session coasteering in South Devon). Whatever intentions and dreams you may have, come up with a mantra and keep your focus positive!
A night time wildlife walk is so much fun, and provides the perfect opportunity to see and hear things you wouldn’t normally during the daytime – some creatures only come out at night, so this is your chance to hear them! Through the winter season, you can expect to see bats, foxes, owls and possibly hedgehogs looking for food – if it’s been snowing, or it’s softer underfoot, you might even spot tracks that indicate the type of animals you might encounter later. South Devon is a haven for wildlife, and with so much beautiful coastline, rich nature reserves, canopied woodland and wide open national parks, there are so many different landscapes to explore – you will never be short of somewhere to visit and discover the diversity of plant life and animals found at night. Some of our favourite night time walking routes include Slapton Ley Nature Reserve near Slapton Sands, The River Dart, Prawle Point and also the depths of Loddiswell Woods. Having said that, a walk straight from your holiday cottage doorstep, wherever that may be, will be ample, and you are sure to find something exciting! If you’ve never explored the outdoors at night before, be sure to take a torch, journey with someone else so that you’re not alone, wear adequate footwear and warm clothing, and keep your eyes and ears on high alert so that you can pick up any smaller noises. Most importantly, have fun!
We may be biased, but we believe there has never been a better time for a winter retreat to bunker down and spend New Years Eve in South Devon from the comfort of a self catering holiday cottage. Regardless of whether you’re in search of a traditional coastal cottage just a stone’s throw from the beach, or a luxury property that boasts a hot tub and open fire, we are certain you will find something to suit. From properties suitable for couples, to small groups and families and also a wide selection of properties that are dog-friendly, we have something for everyone. To find your perfect winter holiday cottage browse our portfolio or call our team of travel experts today. If you haven’t booked your New Years break yet, don’t panic, we still have a selection of properties available, but hurry, the New Year is drawing closer.
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