Stokenham | South Devon Village Guide
February 7th, 2017 | By Ross Purdy
Stokenham is a leafy Devon village just a mile from Start Bay and its many unspoilt beaches. Located on the A379 between Kingsbridge and Dartmouth, it’s easy to reach, and the village is often passed through by commuters, holidaymakers and others. But it’s well worth parking up for a drink or meal at one of the two pubs, or making Stokenham the start or endpoint of a coastal or countryside walk.
Stokenham is home to two excellent village pubs, both of which have strong reputations for freshly-prepared food and a friendly welcome.
The Church House Inn
The Church House Inn is a spacious, child-friendly and lively pub-restaurant with a sizeable beer garden and regular live music. It’s in a very convenient spot off the A379 (the main coastal through-road) and has ample parking.
The No 93 bus stops right outside, so it’s ideal if you’d like a drink or two. You’ll find lots of locally-sourced meat, fish and other produce on the extensive menu, and for kids, there’s an outdoor play area to help them burn off steam.
The Tradesmans Arms
A pretty 14th century village pub with a thatched roof and attractive hanging-basket displays, the Tradesmans Arms has exactly the cosy, traditional feel inside that you’d hope to see after opening the front door. Stop by at the Tradesmans Arms to choose a drink from the extensive wine or ale lists. If you’re interested in having a meal there, you’ll find the menu puts a strong emphasis on seasonal, locally-sourced food, and seeks to put an original, contemporary twist on a range of pub classics.
Built on the hillside, the St Michael and All Angels Church towers over the surrounding area, including the Church House Inn which sits in its shadow. The present building originates from the 15th century, but there was a Norman church on the same site for some time before its reconstruction. The tower stands at 85 ft, and is especially impressive when seen from the foot of the hill.
The Parish of Stokenham is part of the Benefice of Stokenham, Slapton, and Charleton with Buckland Tout-Saints. You can find out about services and events on the Church of England website.
Near to Stokenham
Being just a mile from the coast at Torcross, Stokenham is in a nice location for exploring an especially scenic part of the South Hams. It’s also a quick drive to Kingsbridge and Dartmouth, both of which have a wide range of shops, cafés, restaurants and other attractions. Some of the nearby places worth a visit are:
Stokeley Farm Shop
We featured Stokeley Café in our recent #WakeUpToSouthDevon video, as its breakfasts are a huge hit, both with our locally-based team and large numbers of visitors and other locals.
Torcross is a coastal village just a few minutes drive further east from Stokeley Farm Shop. Your gateway to Slapton Sands, the village sits at the southern tip of this three-mile fine-shingle beach. Pop in for a drink or meal at the ever-popular Start Bay Inn or grab a bite at the Beach House, both of which are situated right on the water’s edge.
Find out more about this charming, historic settlement in our Torcross Village Guide.
The Slapton Ley National Nature Reserve
Across from Torcross and Slapton Sands is one of the most important wetland areas in the South West. The site of one of the largest freshwater lakes in England, the Slapton Ley Nature Reserve is a popular spot for birdwatchers and other nature-spotters. Find out more here.
Slapton Sands is situated towards the middle of Start Bay. This is a stunning 15-mile stretch of coastline, from Warren Point (just below Dartmouth) down to Start Point, which is home to an iconic lighthouse.
Holidays around Stokenham
A mile from Stokenham, in historic Torcross, Coast & Country Cottages offers seven holiday homes, including:
At the Beach apartments
At the Beach is a development of luxury apartments and cottages on the very edge of Slapton Sands. The site of the former Torcross Hotel, At the Beach has retained its status as a Victorian landmark, and offers fantastic accommodation for beach-lovers.
1 At the Beach is a VisitEngland Five Star-awarded two-bedroom ground-floor apartment, with a private terrace overlooking the beach.
With a VisitEngland Four Star Gold award, 2 At the Beach is a luxurious ground-floor holiday home, which also boasts a private beachside terrace.
This three-bedroom penthouse apartment, which has a VisitEngland Four Star Gold award, sleeps up to six guests, offering some wonderful views and plenty of room over its two floors.
Set back from the main At the Beach complex in Torcross, The Barn is a tastefully-converted barn, which offers cosy yet stylish and luxurious accommodation at VisitEngland 5 Star Gold standard.
Argosy is a delightful Victorian seaside cottage offering panoramic views of the Ley, the beach and out to sea. With a VisitEngland Four Star award, this three-bedroom holiday home offers fantastic accommodation for up to seven guests.
Facing Slapton Ley, this attractive three-bedroom holiday home is in the perfect spot for those wishing to explore the South Devon coast and countryside. With a VisitEngland Four Star Gold award, Anchor Ley’s reverse-level layout makes maximum use of the beautiful views.
Built into the cliff, Boathouse Cottage offers breathtaking elevated views of Slapton Sands, the Ley and the striking land bar that divides the fresh water from the sea. With a VisitEngland Four Star Gold award, this two-bedroom property offers superb accommodation for couples and young families.