Walk - Brixham Breakwater

1.1 miles (1.8 km)

Brixham Harbour - TQ5 9AF Brixham Harbour

Easy - Predominantly level.

A gentle, predominantly level walk along the breakwater with panoramic views across the harbour and Torbay. There are two stretches of a gradient. The harbour edge does not have a handrail or barrier. There are toilets and plenty of car parking at the start or end of the walk. A cafe provides both refreshments and a panoramic view of Torbay.

To check that this walk is suitable for you click here where you can find additional mapping and photographs showing gradients, path surfaces, and other detailed information.

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.


Fabulous, clean places to stay, great views, free parking, warm and cozy

Westbury Guest House

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

Brixham House

Lovely, friendly bed and breakfast approx 10 mins from swcp, fabulous breakfast, happy to accept 1 night bookings all year!

South Bay Holiday Park

Set above the bustling town of Brixham, this lively holiday park has an action packed entertainment programme & childrens' adventure playground. Direct path to the delightful St Mary's Cove and the SW Coast Path. Range of chalets and caravans.

Brixham Caravans

A small family business dedicated to providing high quality, great value caravan holidays & accommodation close to Brixham coastline.


Static caravan rental on South Bay Holiday Park. Next to Path. 2 & 3 bed units available. Prices starting from £125 for 3nts and £175 for 7 nt stays.

The Commodore

Beautiful, clean seafront 'Room Only' accommodation, with shared kitchen and living/dining room (Subject to COVID19 restrictions)

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.

Haytor Hotel

Elegant and welcoming Victorian villa, offering delicious breakfasts, a peaceful night's sleep. 4 mins walks from harbour and beach.

Spabrook Escapes

Deluxe, 3 Bedroom House With Stunning Views Of The Estuary & Royal Naval College

Dartside Holidays

Based in Dartmouth, Dartside Holidays own and manage 16 self-catering apartments suitable for all budgets and all lengths of stay

Eight Bells B&B

Variety of breakfasts with a stunning view. On waterfront, a few minutes from the Coast Path. 1 double, 1 family room. Both ensuite. Sleeps 6 max.

The Old Newsagent

Ground floor flat, sleeps two. Fully equipped for self catering. Perfect location for walkers. Situated above historic Bayards Cove.
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 Cafe

Home-made seasonal food, cream teas and delicious coffee, all served with a smile and stunning views from our cliff-top Napoleonic Fortress.

Interactive Elevation

Route Description

  1. Leave the car park - fee payable – and move the short distance from the car to the start of the walk. The ground is flat and tarmaced.  The pathway is concreted along the whole of the walk.

To your left can be seen the Torbay Lifeboat Station. Brixham Lifeboat Station was opened in 1866 but since 1924 it has been known as 'Torbay'. The lifeboat station was granted the Honorary Freedom of the Borough of Torbay on 29 April 1988. Since 2005 it has operated an all-weather lifeboat and an inshore lifeboat. For the period 1875 to 1923 Torquay also had a Lifeboat Station located at the 'Ladies Bathing Cove' (now known as Beacon Cove) close to the Imperial Hotel. 

To your right is Breakwater Beach. It has won many awards, including the Breakwater Beach Blue Flag, Quality Coast Award, and is a Marine Conservation Society Good Beach Guide Recommended Beach.

There is a plaque commemorating the American servicemen who left here, from the slipway for the D-Day landing beaches in 1944. As part of the D-Day preparations, a concrete "hard" was built inside the breakwater down which tanks and other vehicles were embarked before the final departure at the end of May 1944. Shortly before this took place, two houses in Berry Head Road were demolished so that the US Army's largest transporters could turn into the assembly area. The occupants of the properties were given just a few days to leave. "Churchill Gardens" occupies the site today.

  1. There are 2 gradients – the first is about 1 in 4 with a height gain of 5 metres.
  2. The second gradient has a rise of about 1.5 metres in its 10-metre length.

There are metal, backless seats placed at regular intervals all along the walk. However, be careful to not go too near the edge as there is no handrail or barrier between you and the harbour water. There is a regular placement of lifebelts.

Towards the lighthouse, there are the remains of an abandoned pier. The Americans constructed the pier and slipway in WW2.

Brixham was subjected to a number of air attacks during World War 2.  On 14 July 1940, a daylight raider dropped 4 bombs at Brixham and "sank a liner", according to the German News Agency. This was, actually, the coal hulk London City, which sank at her moorings. She was later refloated, only to be sunk a second time on 27th February 1941. On this occasion too, the German High Command reported a major success. During a raid in 1942, the London City was "sunk" for the third time.

During the war, over 1,000 small vessels were built or repaired at Upham's shipyard. The old Jackman's Yard on the north side of the Breakwater was also used for a while. The Central Diving School of HMS Vernon was relocated to Brixham and trained frogmen and other specialists for underwater operations in Europe and elsewhere.

  1. The lighthouse at the end of the breakwater marks the necessity to turn around and go back to the start of the walk.

A lighthouse was established here in 1878 - the current one was built in 1916. It is 9 metres high, painted white and has a lantern and a gallery. For maintenance purposes, it is accessed via a small door on its side.


Car parking - fee payable - is available at the start of the walk. The short distance from the car to the start of the walk is flat and tarmaced.

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