Fun Things To Do In Salcombe
Salcombe is a picturesque coastal town located in the South Hams district of Devon, UK. Known for its stunning beaches, crystal clear waters, and rich history, Salcombe has become a popular destination for tourists and locals alike. With so much to see and do, it can be overwhelming to decide where to start. That’s why we’ve put together a list of 20 must-do activities that will help you make the most of your time in Salcombe. From exploring historic landmarks to indulging in delicious seafood, there’s something for everyone. So, whether you’re a nature lover, a foodie, or an adrenaline junkie, this guide will surely help you plan your perfect Salcombe getaway. Let’s dive in!
- Take a Walk Along the South West Coast Path
The South West Coast Path is one of the most popular walking routes in the UK, and for good reason. The path stretches for 630 miles along the coast, offering breath-taking views of the sea, cliffs, and countryside. Salcombe is located on the path, so you can easily explore a section of it during your stay. The walk from Salcombe to Bolt Head is particularly stunning, with panoramic views of the sea and the coastline. Make sure to wear comfortable shoes and bring plenty of water and snacks, as the walk can take several hours.
- Visit Salcombe Castle
Salcombe Castle is a historic fortification that dates back to the 16th century. The castle was built to protect the town from French and Spanish invaders and was used as a military base until the 20th century. Today, the castle is open to the public and offers stunning views of the town and the sea. You can explore the castle ruins and learn about its history through informative displays. Don’t forget to bring your camera, as the views from the castle are truly breath-taking.
- Go Crabbing at The Quay
The Quay is the heart of Salcombe, and it’s where you’ll find many of the town’s best restaurants, shops, and attractions. It’s also the perfect spot for crabbing. All you need is a bucket, a crab line, and some bait (we recommend bacon or raw chicken). Drop your line into the water and wait for the crabs to bite. It’s a fun activity for kids and adults alike, and you can even cook and eat your catch for a true Salcombe experience.
- Experience the Thrill of Coasteering
If you’re looking for an adrenaline-pumping adventure, coasteering is the activity for you. Coasteering involves traversing along the rocky coastline, jumping into the sea, and swimming through caves and gullies. It’s an exhilarating experience that’s not for the faint of heart, but it’s a great way to see Salcombe from a unique perspective. There are several companies that offer coasteering tours, so make sure to book in advance.
- Relax on Sunny Cove Beach
Sunny Cove Beach is one of Salcombe’s most popular beaches, and for good reason. The beach is small but beautiful, with crystal clear waters and soft sand. It’s the perfect spot for swimming, sunbathing, and picnicking. There’s also a small cafe where you can grab a bite to eat or a drink. Make sure to bring your sunscreen and a good book, as you won’t want to leave this idyllic spot.
- Explore the Salcombe Maritime Museum
The Salcombe Maritime Museum is a must-visit for anyone interested in the town’s rich seafaring history. The museum is located in a historic building that was once a sail loft, and it’s filled with fascinating exhibits and artifacts. You can learn about Salcombe’s role in the fishing and shipping industries, as well as its connections to famous explorers and naval battles. It’s a great way to spend a rainy day in Salcombe.
- Take a Boat Trip to Start Bay
Start Bay is a stunning stretch of coastline located just a short boat ride from Salcombe. The bay is home to several beautiful beaches, including Slapton Sands and Blackpool Sands. You can take a boat trip from Salcombe to Start Bay and spend the day exploring the beaches, swimming in the sea, and enjoying a picnic. It’s a great way to escape the crowds and experience the natural beauty of the area.
- Indulge in Salcombe Dairy Ice Cream
Salcombe Dairy is a local ice cream company that’s been making delicious ice cream since 1981. Their ice cream is made using fresh, local ingredients, and it’s available in a wide range of flavours, from classic vanilla to more unusual options like blackcurrant and clotted cream. You can find Salcombe Dairy ice cream in most of the town’s cafes and restaurants, or you can visit their shop on Island Street for a scoop (or two) of your favourite flavour.
- Take a Dip in the Sea
One of the best things about Salcombe is its crystal-clear waters. Whether you’re a seasoned swimmer or a beginner, there’s no better way to experience the town’s natural beauty than by taking a dip in the sea. There are several beaches in Salcombe where you can swim, including South Sands Beach and North Sands Beach. Make sure to check the tide times before you go, and always swim within the designated areas.
- Explore the South Sands Ferry
The South Sands Ferry is a charming boat that takes passengers from Salcombe to South Sands Beach. The ferry has been operating since the 18th century, and it’s a great way to experience the town’s maritime history. The journey takes just a few minutes, but it’s a memorable experience, with stunning views of the sea and the coastline. You can catch the ferry from the South Sands Landing pontoon, near the Salcombe Yacht Club.
- Visit Overbeck’s National Trust Garden
Overbeck’s is a beautiful National Trust property located on the outskirts of Salcombe. The property includes a stunning garden filled with exotic plants, as well as a museum that showcases the life and accomplishments of the property’s former owner, Otto Overbeck. The garden is open to the public from March to October, and it’s a great way to spend a sunny afternoon in Salcombe.
- Enjoy a Crab Sandwich at The Winking Prawn
The Winking Prawn is a popular cafe located on North Sands Beach. The cafe is known for its delicious seafood dishes, including their famous crab sandwich. The sandwich is made using locally caught crab and served on freshly baked bread. It’s the perfect lunchtime treat after a morning spent swimming in the sea or exploring the town.
- Learn to Sail at Salcombe Yacht Club
Salcombe Yacht Club is one of the town’s most iconic landmarks, and it’s a great place to learn to sail. The club offers sailing lessons for all ages and abilities, and their experienced instructors will teach you everything you need to know. You can also rent a boat and explore the estuary on your own. It’s a great way to experience the town’s seafaring heritage and enjoy the stunning views of the coastline.
- Take a Coastal Cruise
If you’re looking for a more relaxed way to explore the coastline, why not take a coastal cruise? There are several companies that offer cruises from Salcombe, including the Salcombe Sea N Shore and the Dartmouth Steam Railway and River Boat Company. The cruises take you along the coast, offering stunning views of the sea, cliffs, and countryside. It’s a great way to see the area from a different perspective and learn about its history and wildlife.
- Visit the Salcombe Gin Distillery
Salcombe Gin is a local distillery that produces award-winning gin using locally sourced ingredients. The distillery is open to the public and offers tours and tastings. You can learn about the gin-making process and sample some of the distillery’s delicious gins, including their popular Salcombe Gin Rosé. It’s a great way to experience the town’s food and drink culture and take home a bottle (or two) of your favourite gin.
- Watch the Sunset at Bolt Head
Bolt Head is a stunning headland located just outside of Salcombe. It’s a popular spot for hiking and wildlife watching, but it’s also a great place to watch the sunset. The views from the headland are truly breath-taking, with panoramic views of the sea and the coastline. Pack a picnic and a blanket and settle in for a romantic evening watching the sun go down.
- Explore the Salcombe Estuary
The Salcombe Estuary is a beautiful body of water that’s surrounded by stunning cliffs and countryside. You can explore the estuary by boat, kayak, or paddleboard, or you can take a scenic walk along the banks. The estuary is home to a wide range of wildlife, including seals, dolphins, and seabirds, so keep your eyes peeled for them.
- Visit the Salcombe Art Club
The Salcombe Art Club is a community of local artists who showcase their work in a charming gallery in the town centre. The gallery features a wide range of artwork, including paintings, sculptures, and ceramics. You can also attend workshops and classes to learn more about different art forms. It’s a great way to support local artists and take home a unique piece of Salcombe art.
- Try a Seafood Platter at The Crab Shed
The Crab Shed is a popular seafood restaurant located on the waterfront in Salcombe. The restaurant is known for its delicious seafood platters, which feature a wide range of locally caught seafood, including crab, lobster, and prawns. The platters are perfect for sharing and are a great way to experience the town’s seafood culture.
- Go Bird Watching at Slapton Ley Nature Reserve
Slapton Ley Nature Reserve is a beautiful wetland area located just a short drive from Salcombe. The reserve is home to a wide range of bird species, including kingfishers, herons, and marsh harriers. You can explore the reserve on foot or by bike and enjoy the stunning views of the lake and the surrounding countryside. It’s a great way to escape the crowds and experience the natural beauty of the area.
Salcombe is a beautiful town that has something for everyone. Whether you’re a nature lover, a foodie, or an adrenaline junkie, there are plenty of activities to keep you entertained. From exploring historic landmarks to indulging in delicious seafood, Salcombe is a destination that you’ll never forget. So, what are you waiting for? Start planning your Salcombe getaway today!