Self Guided Walking Holidays
in South Devon and Dorset's Jurassic Coast
If you're after clear air, sweeping cliff walks, breath-taking views and you love to explore, or hunt for fossils, then South Devon and Dorset is definitely a place you should visit
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The South Devon and Dorset coastlines boast the history of England from before the Jurassic period to the present day. Geology mixes with history every step of the way. The River Tamar marks the start point of South Devon, with the ever growing city of Plymouth on its banks, maritime history blends seamlessly with a bustling and vibrant cosmopolitan forward thinking city, proud of its heritage.
For those who prefer the wilderness and solitude of the heather strewn moors, the Two Moors Way begins its journey in the small village of Wembury, located just outside Plymouth taking you high up onto Dartmoor National Park and beyond. The South Devon coastline is interspersed with small rivers flowing from inland out into the English Channel, producing tidal estuaries replete with unique bird and wildlife which are your reward when walking the South West Coast path sections in both South Devon and Dorset, many reserves and sanctuaries are open to visitors and are well worth a visit on your travels. Seasonal and tidal foot ferries link many of the smaller villages to their neighbours, as they have done for time immemorial.
Sailing enthusiasts can come and play on the water in the sailing centre of Salcombe, with river excursions up to the stunning town of Kingsbridge, ‘the hidden gem’ in the South Hams treasure trove, while those with an interest in modern military history must stop awhile when arriving at Slapton, with its memorial to Exercise Tiger. With fishing and trading being the mainstay of many of the villages in previous years, the small cobbled streets of the pretty fishing towns still abound with multi-coloured houses spreading up from the harbour sides.
Popular Victorian holiday destinations such as Torbay, Babbacombe and Dawlish are nestled amongst the coves and bays below the high cliff walks, tempting you down to dip your toes in the sea after a long days walking. For the geologists amongst you, here you can splendour at the stunning and breath-taking changes in the cliffs and mineral deposits as you explore the red cliffs of the Devonian period in Torbay onward towards the blue lias and limestones of Dorset’s World Heritage Jurassic coast across the miles and miles of unspoilt open farmland and long sandy beaches, even those not geologically minded will want to stop a while to tap on some rocks in the hope of finding a fossil all of their own to take home.
The chance to climb Golden Cap - the highest point on the South coast of England presents itself to you as you continue your Dorset adventure onwards towards the shingle banked ridge at Abbotsbury. More open farmland and rolling hills are spread before you as the South Downs meet the sea. South Devon and Dorset offer the opportunity to explore both inland and where the land meets the sea and is guaranteed to tick all the boxes for a complete walking holiday. Whatever type of holiday you want, we at Walk the Trail will ensure it is a memorable and enjoyable one.