Hidden Devon gems; some secret South Hams haunts

August 1st, 2015 | By Alice Jones

Soar Mill Cove, a hidden Devon gem you'll find in the South Hams

When on holiday, you can often find yourself always returning to the places you know best, spending your days on the beaches you have always known and eating at your usual restaurants.  However, there are many different and unique ways to occupy yourself in our region that you may not have discovered yet. These hidden Devon gems can make your holiday that much more special!

Soar Mill Cove

Soar Mill Cove is one of the most peaceful beaches in the area and is only accessible by foot, so this hidden Devon beauty spot is a firm favourite with walkers. Why not escape some of the summer crowds and spend your time at this secluded cove? The sandy shore provides the ideal canvas for budding sandcastle builders, and the sheltered waters are fantastic for a quick dip in the sea. Please do be aware, however, that there is no life guard patrol so be careful when swimming. This beach is truly a hidden Devon gem and really is worth a visit on your holiday. It is especially recommended for dog owners as Soar Mill Cove is dog-friendly all year round. With no roads nearby, you can let your four-legged friend run free.

Loddiswell Woods

A trip to the beach isn’t the only way to get some fresh air in South Devon. One of the more idyllic activities the area has to offer is a walk along the forgotten railway through Loddiswell Woods. Following along the banks of the River Avon, this Hidden Devon walk is a true snapshot of countryside beauty. Why not pack a picnic, sit by the river and enjoy the view on a sunny afternoon?

Fort Charles, Salcombe

North Sands - a hidden Devon beauty spot to rival any other

Another hidden Devon gem in the South Hams is Fort Charles, a ruined fort which is only accessible at low tide from North Sands, Salcombe. Standing on a rock just off of the beach, the fort was captured during the civil war in 1647 and dates from around the 1540s. Whilst Fort Charles now stands as a ruin, battered through the centuries by the force of the sea, the history and intrigue of this landmark make it a must for those who want to learn more about the area. Combine a day on North Sands beach with a visit to this piece of local history for a wholesome day out by the sea. This Hidden Devon spot is a great option for those parties in which some want to relax on the beach and others want to explore.

Start Point Lighthouse

Start Point Lighthouse is an iconic Devon landmark. Walk along the breathtaking South Devon Coast Path to the lighthouse to make the most of the incredible coastline over which it stands – there is parking available near the lighthouse for those who aren’t keen walkers. Tours of the lighthouse are available during the Summer season and are highly recommended with the views from the top of the lighthouse being hard to beat. This is also a beautiful place to watch the sun go down.

Start Point Light House, an iconic South Hams landmark


The Picnic Boat

For a meal time with a difference, try the Picnic Boat, based in Dartmouth. This is the perfect English river picnic for you and your guests, or maybe a romantic trip for two. Taking you down the River Dart, the picnic boat is available for breakfast, lunch and dinner – offering you the option to take your own if you would prefer. Make your holiday more memorable with this peaceful boat ride allowing you to explore some of the hidden Devon delights of the River Dart.

Greenway National Trust House and Gardens

Another hidden Devon gem to visit when on holiday is Greenway National Trust House and Gardens. This beautiful house was the home of Agatha Christie but it’s a great place to visit for fans and non-fans alike. With woodland that reaches down to the riverside, explore the stunning gardens – don’t miss the walled garden with the restored peach house and vinery. The house, kept in the style of the 1950s, is a wonderful, evocative place to explore. You can access it by ferry and steam train, both of which make for an unforgettable day out.

Why not take a look at our A-Z guide to things to do in South Devon and start planning your trip today?

Coast & Country Cottages have a fabulous range of holiday cottages in South Devon available here with something to suit everyone.