Walk - Brixham to Babbacombe

13.2 miles (21.2 km)

Brixham Babbacombe

Easy - Moderate

If you are expecting the walk through the English Riviera to be a trudge along pavements, you are in for a pleasant surprise. You may not actually spot any of the famous coral fossils of Hope’s Nose, but you cannot fail to notice the extraordinary geology along this stretch of coast. The Path passes around the limestone peninsula of Berry Head and wave cut platforms of red sandstone at Shoalstone into the thriving fishing port of Brixham where your walk begins. The hustle and bustle of Brixham’s port is soon left behind as you head through woodland and past some lovely beaches to emerge on the edge of Paignton.

The Path along Paignton and Torquay sea fronts is very easy as it runs along promenades, from which you can easily find refreshments and other distractions. From here on, views of the rich red Devon sandstone rocks towering above the sea draw you through the urban landscapes with a promise of exhilarating cliff walks ahead. Leaving bustling Torquay harbour behind, the Path becomes surprisingly rural and rugged, passing golden beaches and headlands on its way to the gardens of Babbacombe Downs.

There are a range of wonderful places to lay your head near the Coast Path for a well-earned sleep. From large and luxurious hotels, to small and personable B&B's, as well as self-catering options and campsites. The businesses that support the Path, where you've chosen to visit, are listed here.

Bay Torbay Hotel

Superb location close to marina, opposite the promenade where you can join the Coast Path. indoor swimming pool, two bars, cafe & snack bar, and lovely sun terrace.

Millbrook Guest House, Torquay

All rooms ensuite, wi-fi & on-site parking. Garden. Guest lounge with TV & conservatory. 800m flat level walk to the sea front.

Garway Lodge Guest House, Torquay

Adults Only,4 Star Silver Award Licenced Guest House. Single, Double and Twin rooms. Award winning breakfast available, including special diets.

Aveland House

Situated in Babbacombe close to the South West Coast Path. All en-suite rooms,Free Wi Fi. See our website www.avelandhouse.co.uk for more details

Coastguard Cottage, Babbacombe

Small, cosy cottage accommodatioon with all rooms en-suite and with wifi.  Close to many amenities. A substantial breakfast is provided.07780661381 [email protected]

The Cary Arms & Spa

The Cary Arms & Spa “Inn on the Beach” exudes charm, style and comfort of a boutique hotel. Seaside English Heritage dining with chic rooms include dog-friendly accommodation.

The Haldon Guest House, Paignton

Situated 3 minutes walk from Paignton beach, pier and town centre, we are ideally located for exploring the beautiful English Riviera and beyond. Tasty breakfast and a sunny garden to enjoy a cream tea in.

The Clifton at Paignton

Steve and Freda look forward to welcoming you to the Clifton, which is ideally located, just off the sea front. Around the corner from shops and stations. Within easy reach of Dartmoor.

Bay Esplanade Hotel

Overlooking Paignton Beach, close to the Pier. Traditional seaside stay on the English Riviera, a few minutes from the town centre with fabulous views of the bay from the hotel’s informal lounge and bar areas.

Elberry Farm B&B, Broadsands

Uniquely situated just a few minutes from the Coast Path, this working farm offers you a home from home stay. Comfortable rooms with hospitality trays, TV all en suite. A hearty breakfast.  Our garden offers a peaceful haven.

Beacon House B&B,Brixham

Nestled in the harbour bowl of this historic fishing town, Beacon House commands breathtaking views of the inner harbour, marina and beyond the breakwater. A warm welcome awaits all walkers.

Sea Tang Guesthouse, Brixham

Friendly, family run guest house located a few steps form the sea with beautiful views across Torbay.

Driftwood B&B, Brixham

Welcome to the new contemporary-classic boutique B&B in the heart of Brixham harbour. In an elevated position, 250 yards from the South West Coast Path, Driftwood combines peace & quiet with stunning views.

The Smugglers Haunt Hotel

This property is a 11-minute walk from the beach. Smugglers Haunt Hotel is a 300-year old building in the charming fishing town of Brixham.

Westbury Guest House, Brixham

A 14th century Georgian Guest House with great charm and character. Short level walk from the harbour, pubs and restaurants.

Brixham House, Brixham

Friendly, licensed B&B. Renowned for fabulous breakfast choice. 10 minutes from Brixham Harbour.

You'll be spoilt for choice for where to eat and drink along the Path. With lots of local seasonal food on offer, fresh from the farm, field and waters. Try our local ales, ciders, wines and spirits, increasing in variety by the year, as you sit in a cosy pub, fine dining restaurant or chilled café on the beach. The businesses that support the Path, where you've chosen to visit, are listed here.

The Guardhouse Café, Berry Head

Stunning views, Napoleonic forts, rare wildlife and superb coastal walks – a visit to Berry Head has something for everyone (even before trying our fabulous food)

Interactive Elevation

Highlights

  • Watching the trawlers coming and going in Brixham harbour.
  • Enjoying the many fine rock formations that have led to this section of Coast being designated an Unesco Geopark. The geopark consists of 32 sites which between them cover 3 geological time periods and no less than 400 million years of earth history. Raised beaches and drowned forests tell of changing sea levels while the distinctive Torbay limestones are a record of coral-filled tropical seas. The South West Coast Path is the ideal way to view and discover much of the geopark as about three quarters of the sites lie along its route. These include Babbacombe Cliff, Hope’s Nose, Berry Head, Sharkham Point and Walls Hill.
  • Fishcombe Cove: it was on this small, secluded shingle beach that William of Orange landed a crew of 20,000 men in 1688. A statue to him stands at Brixham Quay.
  • Exploring the rock pools on the long sandy beach of Broadsands. Look out for the steam trains crossing the viaduct. You may want to take a visit to the Seashore Centre where you can find out more about the local marine life. Entrance is free.
  • Playing the slots on a traditional seaside pier at Paignton. The pier, which is 780 ft (236 metres) long, was first opened to the public in 1879 and has hosted many forms of classic English seaside entertainment including the famous Gilbert and Sullivan comic opera HMS Pinafore.
  • Visiting Torquay’s coastal zoo Living Coasts, where you can get nose to beak with a penguin and have an underwater view of puffins hunting for fish. For admission details tel: 01803 202470.
  • Keeping a look out along the seafront for the commemorative plaques along Torquay’s Agatha Christie Mile. The famous crime writer was born in Torquay in 1890 and went on to base many of her books around the English Riviera.
  • The view from the 350 million-year-old Devonian limestone of Hopes Nose across to Thatcher’s Rock and the many nesting seabirds.
  • Walking through the woodland around Black Head.
  • Babbacombe: a small village in its own right, Babbacombe offers a quieter alternative to the bustle of Torquay. The pier, which was built in 1889, is often populated by fishermen. Views from Babbacombe Downs reach out across Lyme Bay to Dorset, and Portland Bill is even visible on clear days.
  • Walking from Babbacombe Downs to Oddicombe Beach and taking a ride on Babbacombe’s historic cliff railway.

Shorter option

Paignton (5.6 miles, 9.1 km).

Longer option

Continue to Maidencombe (an additional 3.1 miles, 5.1 km).

Public transport

The nearest train stations are Torquay and Paignton, from where you can catch buses to Brixham and Babbacombe. For timetable information, zoom in on the interactive map and click on the train station and bus stop symbols, visit Traveline or phone 0871 200 22 33.

Parking

Brixham, Churston Cove, Broadsands, Goodrington Sands, Paignton, Torquay and Babbacombe.

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