The 10 Top Seaside Villages to Visit in Devon

A Devon village by the sea

Beautiful Seaside villages in Devon to visit for an exciting day out. 

I may be biased but the seaside villages in Devon are some of the prettiest in the world. Interspersed with the stark contrast of the moors, are little seaside villages where people have lived for centuries.

The sense of history can be felt all around them and although there are 100's of villages to visit, we have managed to pick 10 outstanding examples of some of our favourite destinations that you absolutely shouldn't miss, so pack your gear and put on your walking boots and of-course don't forget to take your camera. 

cc-by-sa/2.0 - © William Starkey - geograph.org.uk/p/3797631


1.Bigbury on sea

The village of Bigbury-on-sea lies above the beautiful large sandy beach which shares the same name, and is a must visit for anyone in the area. 

The area is a place of outstanding great natural beauty. If you are a windsurfer or a kitesurfer, this is the perfect place for you to holiday in. The beach is joined by a causeway to Burgh Island, you can walk there when the tide is low. Take the children for a ride on the Sea Tractor, it actually goes into the ocean and over to the island.

There are some beautiful coastal walks including West Coast Path which links Bigbury and Challaborough Bay and the Avon Valley to the East.

Places to eat are plentiful and include Pickwick Inn, an Italian themed 16th-century village pub, The Sloop Inn, just back from the beach also a B&B. 

cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Geoff Barker - geograph.org.uk/p/1141



The village of Beer faces Lyme Bay one mile west of the town of Seaton. The beautiful Lyme cliffs form part of the South West Coast Path. This is a great place for a walking holiday along the cliffs, stopping at various points of interest so take the camera.

The Beer Quarry Caves are a local point of interest, and if you are going into them you will need to book a tour, wear warm clothes as the caves can get very cold. The tour lasts about an hour and explains how the rock was removed and what it was used for in the old days.

Stay in Beer for lunch and try one of the following places, The Smugglers Kitchen, Gina's Restaurant, or Steamer's Restaurant, which has local seafood wash it down with a local beer! 

cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Philip Pankhurst - geograph.org.uk/p/4095909



Appledore is at the mouth of the River Torridge and is famous for shipbuilding and Hocking's ice cream only sold in Devon. It is characterized by brightly painted, fisherman's cottages, galleries, and cafes.

Visit Tapeley, a historic estate, the house Tapeley Park is a National Trust listed historic house. Explore the Forest Garden and the grounds.

Visit the North Devon Maritime Museum, to revisit the history of Devon and Appledore as a fishing and shipbuilding village. If you have your dog with you and are planning to have lunch there are three dog-friendly cafes, they are, Market Street Kitchen, Coffee Cabin, and a pub The Beaver Inn described as a 'warm dog-friendly pub  

cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Ian Capper - geograph.org.uk/p/6353641



Clovelly is a 16th Century village with cobbled streets, high above its picturesque harbor below.

Because of Historical significance and nature of the village, cars cannot be driven into the city, so leave the car at the top in the big car park and walk down and explore the village.

The small village looks out over the Bristol Channel and has a population of about 500 people. The main street contains a museum filled with the history of the small fishing village. Go for a donkey ride and visit the donkey shop.

Then visit the Fisherman's Cottage, and see how the Fisherman lived, there is also a local pottery store. For lunch, visit the Cottage Tea rooms or the Harbour restaurant, before you walk back up the hill to the car. This is an ideal place to get some picturesque photos.


cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Philip Halling - geograph.org.uk/p/5141789


5.Combe Martin

Is on the North Devon Coast, east of Ilfracombe. It is a small seaside village on the North edge of the Exmoor National Park. This means there are lots of really beautiful walks and opportunities for amazing photography on the moors.

Walk around the picturesque harbor, and visit the Coombe Martin Museum. The town is known for celebrating its heritage and holding an annual Pagan festival in Spring. Visit the Galleon Tea Rooms or the Redwood Cafe and Ice Cream parlor.

 cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Lewis Clarke - geograph.org.uk/p/5761569


6.East Portlemouth

The charming village of East Portlemouth lies not far from Kingsbridge in South Devon, close to the Kingsbridge estuary, the village is a most visit for someone who is after a smaller and quieter rural location to visit, with great walks, and easy access to the coast.

It would be great for a small family or romantic getaway and why not take the dog for those great Devon walks.

There are easy links to Salcombe as well due to the ferries in the area, as well as many great locations to visit nearby in South Devon. 

cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Glen Denny - geograph.org.uk/p/1733982


 7 Morthoe

Morthoe is a village and former manor in Devon near Woolacombe and is situated in a picturesque valley.

Visit Barricane Beach, a sheltered spot with lots of rock pools, and take some photos of the amazing scenery. Take a visit to the Morthoe Museum where you can relive the history of the area once known for wreckers and smugglers, who plied their trade along the shore. It is now very peaceful with cafes and restaurants.

Try the Chichester Arms Hotel for a barbecue and beer, or the Barricane Beach Cafe ( Summer only), it is crane lifted down to the beach and removed when Summer is over.


cc-by-sa/2.0 - © Martin Bodman - geograph.org.uk/p/49051



Braunton is a village and former manor in Devon with a large population of around 8,000, it lies west of Barnstable. The village allows good access to the South West Coast Path and offers spectacular scenery, you can walk for miles and have ample opportunity for picnics and of course don't forget your camera as there are many scenics spots to choose from.

There are plenty of shops to explore, as well as pubs and restaurants with The White Lion and Williams Arms both great venues for lunch and dinner. 

Dietmar Rabich / Wikimedia Commons / “Braunton (Devon, UK), St Brannock's Church -- 2013 -- 1557” / CC BY-SA 4.0 



A seaside village on the North Coast of Devon, quite near to Morthoe. It has a lovely long white beach and is a summer destination for many holidaymakers. The coast path to Ilfracombe runs for 8 miles, and this would make a good walk to take some amazing photos of the coastline.

An idyllic spot for rest and recreation, and is also great for watersports, being a favourite spot for surfers, it also has some excellent cafes and restaurants including The Beach House Restaurant and The Beachcomber Cafe. 



If you love to surf and swim, Croyde is the place for you. The children can enjoy the sand and sea, and you can also indulge your passion for photography as the scenery is gorgeous.

Croyde is also a great place for walking and it is one of Devon's more picturesque areas, take the trail from Croyde to Baggy Point with its cliff and views of the ocean. If you would rather leave the walking boots at home why not hire a bike instead and go on a cycling tour.

When it comes to lunchtime there is plenty of choices from ice cream to cafes Sandleigh Tea Rooms and Garden a Tea house, Baggy's Surf Lodge, and Cafe by the beach. 

Ron Strutt / Croyde, North Devon / CC BY-SA 2.0

What's your favorite seaside place to visit in Devon? Let us know in the Comments box below!

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Meet the Author:

I am a Devon based Photographer, who enjoys travel, hiking, rugby and photographing the beautiful world in which we live in, I see photography as a creative expression upon visiting beautiful places. Each picture often tells a story.

Thank you for reading this article, Please feel to share it with your friends and please check out all my Photography - and my Devon Artist Prints for Sale


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