Life’s better at the beach!
Devon is spoilt for choice when it comes to beaches, with South Devon being particularly blessed. And along the South West Coast Path, around Newton and Noss, we have a handful that will take your breath away.
This extraordinary Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty has a beach for everyone to enjoy, with a choice of large, sandy coves, to smaller, sheltered bays. So let’s take a look at what just some of our nearest beaches can offer.
Owned by the National Trust, Cellar Beach (known locally as Cellars) is a popular spot for both villagers and visitors to the area. Accessible by a one-mile walk along part of the South West Coast Path from Noss, this unaffected hidden retreat is more usually visited by boat, and you’ll often see a gathering of dinghies and rowing boats in the tiny bay during the summer.
Named after the ‘cellars’ that used to store fishermen’s equipment and daily catch centuries ago, this small, but perfectly formed, remote pebble and sand beach is tucked away in the mouth of the estuary. Looking out over the seagrass beds and sandbar of the Yealm, towards Wembury, Cellar Beach is a perfect respite for coastal walkers, and equally has plenty to offer the longer-term visitor looking to swim, snorkel or explore the rocks.
Part owned by the National Trust, Wembury Beach provides almost everything you need for a great family day out. There’s ample parking if you’re driving here, but a quick ferry ride from Newton or Noss to Warren Point, followed by a 1.5 mile walk along the spectacular South West Coast Path, will bring you to this charming, sandy cove with expansive views out towards the rugged island of Mewstone.
While the beach is renowned for its exceptional rock-pooling just before low tide, further out in the bay, the clear waters are popular for snorkelling and diving – even surfing is becoming increasingly common here. With the Wembury Marine Centre close by, as well as a seasonal shop and café, Wembury Beach is a self-contained oasis.
Just slightly further up the coast, Bovisand Beach is another family-friendly bay. Though a five-mile walk from Warren Point, it does take you further along the stunning South West Coast Path, taking in some impressive scenery along the way. It’s also easily accessible by car, being around a 10-mile journey, with plenty of parking.
Another popular beach, this deep, sloping bay has plenty of sandy space, with views out across Plymouth Sound, while its low cliffs provide shelter. There are lots of rock pools to explore, and clear water in the bay makes for excellent snorkelling and surfing. With a seasonal shop, and a wide, grassy area above the beach for a picnic with a view, Bovisand is an excellent family beach day out.
Privately owned by the Flete Estate, this unspoilt beach is an easterly walk of around seven miles from Noss, above the cliffs and coves along the South West Coast Path to Mothecombe. Also easily reached by car, there’s plenty of parking available just a few minutes’ walk from the beach, which is also where you’ll find refreshments in the Schoolhouse Café.
Mothecombe is the perfect, enclosed beach. With sloping sands, shaded areas and an abundance of tiny coves and rockpools to explore at low tide, this understated, sandy beach is perfect for getting away from it all. And at low tide, Mothecombe joins up with Wonwell beach on the other side of the Erme estuary. Whether you arrive by foot or by car, Mothecombe doesn’t fail to impress.
We hope you can get a chance to visit or revisit some of these amazing beaches, or even explore some of the many others this fabulous coastline has to offer. While they’re all stunning in their own way, each one is totally unique, having its own story to tell.
Please note there are restrictions for dogs on these beaches (with the exception of Cellar Beach) during the summer season: dogs are not permitted on Mothecombe Beach between 1st May and 30th September. However, please do check local signage and information for the most up-to-date details.
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