The South Hams is a stunning area for those looking to enjoy a walking break with their dog. With the beautiful South West Coast Path, miles of unspoilt, dog-friendly beaches, and a myriad of footpaths and green lanes to explore, a visit to the region with your four-legged friend is a must! Here are just three dog-friendly South Hams walks to try.
1. Bantham, Thurlestone and Hope Cove
One of the more scenic South Hams walks, this stretch of the coastline is dotted with famous scenes that you’ll be sure to recognise. Start at the small village of Bantham, home to a fabulous sandy beach with unsurpassed views across to the iconic Burgh Island – a beautiful landmark made all the more famous by novelist Agatha Christie. Saunter along the cliff paths and hike across the fields, following the marked trail, and you will arrive at the quaint village of Thurlestone. If the view there seems familiar, it might well be because you’ve come across the beautiful, symbolic ‘Thurlestone Rock’ from a great number of picture postcards.
Continue along the South West Coast Path to the former smuggler’s haunt of Hope Cove, a pretty fishing village where you can enjoy an ice cream on the beach, whilst the dog enjoys a paddle in the surf to cool down. You can also start a number of South Hams walks in the village of Hope Cove, heading towards Salcombe.
2. Salcombe to Bolt Head
Even among the fierce competition provided by this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Salcombe stands out as one of the most scenic places to enjoy your South Hams walks. Whether you stroll from Salcombe to Bolt Head and beyond, or take the foot-passenger ferry across the estuary to the East Portlemouth side of the water (where you can hike towards Gara Rock), where the views are second to none.
The 2.75 mile circular mooch from South Sands in Salcombe to Bolt Head is one of the easier South Hams walks available to you. On this stroll you can admire the stunning views over the estuary and out to sea. Your dog will love the sea air and the banquet of scents for it to take in!
3. The Start Bay coastline
When planning your South Hams walks, remember to include the historic Start Bay coastline. Amble along the beach, playing fetch with your dog at Torcross, which is famous as a beach used for World War II training exercises in the lead up to the D-Day landings. After that, head along the cliff path towards Gara Rock, which is littered with picturesque coves and beautiful views. Pass the Start Point lighthouse, which is still in use today, before heading to South Hallsands to peer down at the ruins of the forgotten village, destroyed by storms in 1917. This is one of the most captivating South Hams walks, particularly popular with history buffs and their four-legged friends!
Enjoying a stroll is just one of the many things to do in the region with your pet. For more information about dog-friendly days out, read this blog: The highlights of holidays with pets in South Devon.