One of our favourite towns in the South Hams, this weekend is the ideal time to visit Dartmouth and enjoy their very popular Music Festival that runs all weekend, that is free to attend. You can get programmes from local cafes, newsagents and post offices as well at the Tourist Information Centre in town.

Situated at the mouth of the River Dart, Dartmouth offers an amazing range of things to do to keep everyone entertained. All kinds of boating activities and steam train rides. There are ancient castles and buildings with a host of shops, galleries and cobbled streets to explore, not forgetting beaches and country walks. With a mouth-watering selection of top restaurants to choose from, it also enjoys a fantastic Food Festival in October and a fabulous Christmas market in December. The town is always busy and is proud to also host the hugely entertaining Regatta in August.

The town is steeped in history, so we recommend a visit to the small free museum to get a flavour of how Dartmouth has earned it’s stripes as one of the most interesting towns in the South Hams. You can book Guided history tours round the town to uncover all its secrets and even have a tour round the 150 year old Naval College and learn about its intriguing heritage and iconic architecture.

There is a leisure centre, with a newly built pool to enjoy on rainy days, or for lots of excitement visit Woodlands Theme Park.  Nearby is Dartmouth Country Club with its 18 hole Championship golf course, a 9 hole course and the newly renovated Spa offering a wide range of treatments, not to mention the use of the swimming pool, Jacuzzi, steam rooms and gym.

Here in South Devon we aren’t just known for our beautiful beaches and green, green fields. We are lucky enough to enjoy some amazing local food producers too, ranging from oils and wine to crisps and crab! So if you want to bring a taste of Devon to your home, then here are some recommendations for you:

Renowned locally for their vineyards, Sharpham’s have a beautiful selection of classic English wine to choose from, alongside their range of award winning soft cheeses. With lots of guided tours and tastings if you visit them on the Sharpham Estate near Totnes, you’re also able to purchase on site or via their website.

Over near Loddiswell is the South Devon Chilli Farm, where you can purchase a variety of spicy products from their farm shop and also enjoy a guided tour explaining the different types of chilli, their farm and their chilli products. Sauces, preserves and chilli chocolate are all available online as well, as well as chilli seeds and plants to try your hand at growing your own.

The delicious and award winning rapeseed oil by Bell & Loxton is not to be missed. Grown locally at Upton Barton, this families love of farming and their passion for good quality natural products is what makes their products so special. Available around the South Hams in delicatessans you can also buy online via

Another product that you will see in all local shops and cafes are Burts Crisps, in fact they are so successful they are sold internationally as well! These hand-cooked crisps with a great range of flavours, start from locally sourced quality potatoes and cooked in small batches. Seasoned with flavours, often sourced from local South West partners, this is a true local products. Get your fix from their online shop at

The Bakehouse is one of my favourite local companies who supply the most amazing artisan bread. Sadly not available online, they do supply lots of local cafes and restaurants alongside their two Bakeries in Kingsbridge and Salcombe Fore Streets.

If you want a true taste of Devon then the South Devon Crab is the best in the UK and we are lucky enough to have local company Favis, where three generations are working in Salcombe and are dedicated to provide the very best, award winning, hand-picked crab to your plate in record time.

 

The South Hams is a dog lovers paradise, there are lots of walks & beaches to entertain your four legged friend and you can also enjoy the local cafes at the same time. We have put together the perfect day for Dog Lovers visiting the area.

Starting in Loddiswell, pop into Avon Mill Garden Centre, to enjoy their great selection of plants and also their local artisan retail spaces with a beautiful collection of gifts and treasures to choose from. With a lovely charming coffee shop as well you can always sneak in some delicious cake whilst your there.

A few hundred yards up is the start of a walk through Loddiswell Wood, which used to be the old railway line. As expected it’s a low flat walk for a couple of mile until you get nearer Topsham Bridge the other end. For those who are feeling energetic you can make it a circular walk, but this will require some uphill walking. Click HERE for a good link to show you the available routes.

Once you’ve worked up an appetite, you can visit the Valley View Café next to Aune Valley Butchers which is a couple of minutes up the road. With lovely views, outside seating and an appealing menu, it’s the perfect spot to refuel with your pooch for the afternoon.

A 10 minute drive away, we love South Milton Sands beach, with dogs allowed all year round it’s a great beach to watch people enjoying the water or for your dog to cool off in the sea. With car parks either end, one nearer Thurlestone Beach with no facilities, or you can wind down the lanes to the National Trust car park, which has more space and toilets nearby. There is also the award winning Beachhouse café, which has lot of cake, ice cream, hot food and takeaway choices to enjoy.

If you still have lots of energy left, you can stroll over the cliffs for 20 mins and visit the delightful village of Hope Cove, with a bar, pub and village shop. There are a couple of attractive beaches to enjoy and often there is evening entertainment at The Cove to experience in the evening.

 

Totnes is just under 15 miles from Kingsbridge. A pretty drive along the A381, which will take you through the villages of Halwell and Harbetonford.

There are various parking choices in Totnes, from on street parking up Fore Street that is limited to an hour or at the top of town you have both long and short stay in the Pavillion car parks for £2 for 2 hours.

For shopping addicts Totnes offers an excellent range of small independent retailers and unique shops, the town is famed for its promotion of ethical products, wholefoods and fair trade goods. In the Civil Hall Square you’ll find the weekly market which is held on Fridays and Saturdays. An Elizabethan market is held each Tuesday morning (May-September), where traders dress in Elizabethan period costumes. The award-winning Totnes Sunday Good Food Market is held on the third Sunday of the month providing you the chance to purchase and sample some of the very best in local South Devon produce.

As well as shopping and exploring, this historic town, dating from Saxon times, has a wealth of wonderful things to see and do. In 2018 the Daily Telegraph named it as one of Britain’s most eccentric towns. You can enjoy river trips on the Dart, discover one of the town’s museums, visit Totnes Castle, take a ride on a steam railway or visit one of the many art galleries.

If you love wine and cheese, then a visit to Sharpham Vineyard is the perfect day out – set on the banks of the River Dart, enjoy a tour of the winery and taste its award winning local produce. For the children, enjoy days out at Pennywell Farm or experience the South Devon Railway, which is near the Rare Breeds Farm and can take you to the Butterfly Farm & Otter sanctuary. For the more adventurous take a canoe trip up the River Dart or visit the High Ropes Experience.

The area around Totnes is stunning and there are a number of walks leading from the town from which to explore the river banks and surrounding countryside. To the North West of Totnes is Dartington, home to Dartington Hall Estate, with its historic house, listed gardens, barn cinema and shops.
In and around Totnes the focus is on locally produced organic food. Totnes has a colourful array of restaurants, cafe’s, pubs and wine bars which offer a wonderful range of both regional and internationally inspired cuisine with fresh produce at the heart of their menus.

 

What better place to spoil your Mum than the beautiful South Hams. For everyone who is staying locally, here are some suggestions for Mum to relax.

Saturday
Before you start to relax for the weekend, why not have some fun with the kids and go on a Canoe Safari with Singing Paddles on the Kingsbridge Estuary. You will enjoy a leisurely paddle (suitable for beginners and people of all ages) and you will get a chance to look at the local wildlife and discuss the history of the area.
Your two hour Canoe Safari will start from Bowcombe Creek and prices are £25 for adults and £10 for children.

Once your feet are dry, leave Dad in charge of the kids and pop along to Harbour House in Kingsbridge for a free Reflexology taster session with Kirsten Alexander of South Devon Reflexology
Thursday 28th March 10.30 – 1.30pm
Friday 29th March 1.00 – 7.00pm
Saturday 30th March 1.00 – 5.00pm

Then after the kids are fed and tucked up in bed, it’s time to get ready to go out and enjoy an evening at the Theatre! Local Kingsbridge Amateur Theatrical Society are putting on a performance of Guys & Dolls at the Marlborough Village Hall. With licensed bar, raked seating and plenty of parking, come and relax and enjoy some fantastic local talent.
Tickets are from £7 and are available from the Kingsbridge Tourist Information Centre.

Sunday
After a long lie in (hopefully with breakfast in bed and lots of cards & flowers), why don’t you say a big thank you to the special lady in your life with a full day of relaxation at HarSPA in the Salcombe Harbour Hotel. They are offering a Foot Soak, Express Facial and Back Massage all for £80! If you wanted to enjoy their facilities as well, that’s £15 extra. We can’t think of a more beautiful place to relax than looking over the Salcombe Estuary and enjoying the stunning spa surroudings.

Then you can visit the beautiful Buckland Tout Saints Hotel in Goveton and enjoy their Mothers day lunch from 12-1.30 . For just £29.50 you will enjoy a 3 course lunch with coffee plus a gift for mum to take home

We hope that all visiting Mums have a wonderful day!

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