The whole of South Devon is one of the UK’s most unspoilt areas. In fact it’s so beautiful here that it’s been designated as an outstanding area of natural beauty. If you’re going to be visiting Dartmouth for a holiday then you need to get out and explore the surrounding areas and experience the true splendour of this idyllic piece of England.
If you’re an animal lover then Dartmouth is a great place to take a holiday, because you’ll get to see all manner of animals, from wild birds along the coastal paths to penguins at the nearby Living Coasts Zoo. Here are four exciting ways for you to unleash the David Attenborough in you.
1. Marine Exploration With Monty Halls. Thanks to its location, Dartmouth is home to some incredible marine wildlife. In fact to see the best of Dartmouth it’s a necessity to take to the waters, whether that’s by a traditional boat or kayak. The waters around Dartmouth are populated by seals and dolphins, while the craggy cliffs and inlets are the nesting site for a huge variety of resident and migratory birds. If you want the best chance to see everything then a trip with marine biologist Monty Halls is the way to go. Famous for his various shows on the BBC and National Geographic, Monty and his crew know the area like the back of their hands and their high-speed, long range RIB will take you on an eye-opening tour of the area.
(Image credit: Monty Halls)
2. Bird Spotting At Slapton Ley. Slapton Ley is the largest freshwater lake in the South West of England. Separated from the sea by a thin strip of shingle, it’s also the site of a nature reserve, owned by Whitley Wildlife Conservation Trust (who also own nearby Paignton Zoo and Living Coasts). Slapton Ley is home to the country’s largest population of Cetti’s warbler and also a healthy amount of Bitterns. Many foreign species of birds winter here, or use it as a staging post for the next leg of their migration, so there is always a variety of species to spot. Aside from birds Slapton Ley is also the only site in the UK where the critically endangered Strapwort plant is found.
3. See Exotic Animals At Living Coasts. Just a short drive away, Living Coasts is an astonishingly diverse coastal zoo which is home to both local wildlife and also creatures from around the world like seahorses and octopus. The habitats range from the British coast, to mangrove swamps and South African penguin beaches.
(Image credit: Living Coasts)
4. Explore The River Dart. If you want to see some of Devon’s most beautiful scenery and catch glimpses of some wonderful wildlife, then hire a kayak and take a trip up the Dart. Dart Adventures offer guided or self-hire kayaks and equipment on a half or full day basis. Starting out at nearby Dittisham they recommend heading up the Dart towards Totnes for an easy and relaxing trip. Keep an eye out for kingfishers, stonechats and otters as you paddle along a landscape that could have come straight out of The Lord Of The Rings.
If you want to experience the wonder of Dartmouth and its surrounding areas, then book a stay in one of our Dartmouth holiday cottages.