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Overview

Walking Holidays
9 - 11 Nights
101.5 miles / 164 km
  • Prices from: £820 per person
  • Start: Plymouth, Devon
  • Finish: Exmouth, Devon
  • Availability: Year-round
  • Grading: Moderate to Challenging
  • Way-marked: Yes

South West Coast Path – Plymouth to Exmouth Highlights

Seafaring history
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Dive into Plymouth’s maritime heritage and explore the cobbled streets of the historic Barbican District.

Diverse terrain
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Venture through the dramatic cliff tops, deep wooded valleys, and secluded beaches of South Devon.

Fresh seafood
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Indulge in freshly-caught delights of the sea.

Seaside towns
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Explore the bustling seaside towns of Salcombe, Dartmouth and Exmouth.

Scenic ferry crossings
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Experience numerous ferry crossings as you traverse the coast, from tiny rowboats to larger passenger ferries.

Awe-inspiring scenery
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Traverse one of the most beautiful sections of the entire South West Coast Path from Hope Cove to Salcombe.

A Diverse & Exhilarating Section of the South West Coast Path

This wonderfully varied section of the South West Coast Path takes you from the historic streets of Plymouth along the awe-inspiring coastline of South Devon to the bustling town of Exmouth. Enjoy the scenery as you traverse through one of the most beautiful areas of the entire walk between Hope Cove and Salcombe.

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The trail passes through dramatic headlands, densely wooded areas, bustling seaside towns and steep coastal valleys to finish in Exmouth, one of the oldest seaside towns in Devon.

Take in the secluded beach-fringed landscape and contrasting lively towns of Salcombe, Dartmouth, Brixham and Paignton, as you wind your way along the coast. The section of the South West Coast Path between the seafaring city of Plymouth and Exmouth is diverse in both the nature of the trail and the settlements you will visit en-route, making it an exciting, impressive and fulfilling journey.

This National Trail is also well-waymarked, allowing you to truly enjoy the variety of fascinating heritage, wildlife, geology and spectacular scenery along the way.

This section of the wonderful South West Coast Path is full of variety in every sense of the word. From terrain to location, there is a constant feeling of change and contrast. It is exciting, challenging and rewarding.

If you’re looking for a walking holiday which offers an incredible variety, the Plymouth to Exmouth section of the South West Coast Path is not to be missed.

South West Coast Path (Plymouth to Exmouth) Route Map

Recommended Itinerary

Our most popular itinerary is SWCP-P-EX1 which covers the route in 8 days / 9 nights.

Travel to Plymouth for your first night’s accommodation
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Make your way to the maritime city of Plymouth, which is steeped in history, and spend the evening at your first night’s accommodation.

Day 1: Plymouth to Noss-Mayo (12.5 miles / 20 km)
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Your journey on the South West Coast Path begins along the Waterfront Walkway through the historic streets of the largest city on the trail.

From the end of the walkway, the trail offers easy walking close to the sea, past the old naval gunnery school of HMS Cambridge and onto Wembury, where you will take a short ferry to Noss-Mayo (*).

* Please note that the ferry operates from April to September. Taxi transfers are included in your package outwith this period.

Day 2: Noss-Mayo to Bigbury-on-Sea (14.5 miles / 23 km)
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This section is a mixture of easy, open walking. Some strenuous climbs up and down the coastal slopes are always rewarded with spectacular coastal views.

You will largely follow the Erme Estuary and enjoy views over to Burgh Island as you approach Bigbury-on-Sea.

Day 3: Bigbury-on-Sea to Salcombe (13 miles / 21 km)
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Today’s walk begins with a ferry crossing (*) across the River Avon to Bantham. From here, the trail offers fairly easy walking past Thurlestone Golf Course until it begins to dip up and down on the way to Hope Cove. 

The following section from Hope Cove to Salcombe is thought by many to be one of the most beautiful sections of the entire 630 miles of the South West Coast Path.

* Please note that the ferry operates from Easter to September. Taxi transfers are included in your package outwith this period.

Day 4: Salcombe to Torcross (12.5 miles / 20 km)
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Your walk today begins with another ferry crossing from Salcombe to East Portlemouth. Once over the water, this section of the South West Coast Path is fairly tough.

The trail crosses high cliffs to Prawle Point, Devon’s southernmost headland, before following the cliff edge to Peartree Cove and on towards Start Point Lighthouse. 

Day 5: Torcross to Dartmouth (10.5 miles / 17 km)
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Today’s section takes you through a varied and striking landscape. The Path traverses through woodland and then, in contrast, passes along steep, grassy slopes leading down to the sea before reaching the beautiful coastal town of Dartmouth.

Day 6: Dartmouth to Paignton (17 miles / 28 km)
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Another ferry trip awaits you today, as you cross the River Dart. From Kingswear Castle, the trail ventures through a series of valleys, making this section rather challenging but equally rewarding with lovely views throughout.

Today, you will also have the opportunity to visit the Berry Head National Nature Reserve, where you can explore an Iron Age fort, two Napoleonic forts, and a lighthouse.

Day 7: Paignton to Teignmouth (14 miles / 23 km)
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Your day starts with easy walking along the seafront, past Paignton pier and onto Torquay. Unfortunately, the route today includes long sections of road walking, but there is little alternative for this section.

The trail then follows the headland around past Thatcher Point and onto Hope’s Nose. It then winds its way through densely wooded areas with many steep ascents and descents, before reaching clifftop paths all the way down to Shaldon, where another ferry trip awaits across to the town of Teignmouth.

Day 8: Teignmouth to Exmouth (8 miles / 13 km)
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On your final day, you will enjoy easy walking along the promenade at Teignmouth, leading to a limestone sea wall which you follow round to Dawlish. From Dawlish Warren, the trail then follows the National Trail Cycleway along the main road through Easton, Cockwood and into Starcross.

You will then make your final ferry crossing (*) over the Exe Estuary to Exmouth, where a well-deserved rest and celebratory meal awaits you.

* Please note that the ferry operates from April to October. Taxi transfers are included in your package outwith this period.

Onward travel
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After breakfast, you will start your journey home after a wonderful walking holiday on the South West Coast Path.

What's Included?

Your South West Coast Path walking holiday includes:

  • Carefully-selected accommodation along the route, and trail transfers when applicable
  • En-suite or private bathroom facilities whenever possible
  • Daily door-to-door baggage transfers
  • Comprehensive information pack, kit list, guidebook and map (one set per room)
  • Personalised itinerary with details of your accommodation, route and recommendations for lunch and dinner
  • Traditional English breakfast
  • 24-hour emergency contact number
  • Full financial protection

Your walking holiday doesn't include:

  • Travel insurance
  • Transport to and from the start and end of the walk
  • Ferry crossings
  • Lunches and evening meals

Itineraries & Prices

We offer 2 suggested itineraries for walking the South West Coast Path from Plymouth to Exmouth.

Our most popular itinerary is SWCP-P-EX1 which covers the route in 8 days.

Please note that due to the busy nature of the South West Coast Path and 2-night minimum stays at most accommodation in the area, we may need to accommodate you for 2 nights in one location with return taxi transfers from the trail. The cost of these transfers would be included in your package.

Tour code
Itinerary
Average miles infoAverage miles per day
Difficulty infoLevel of difficulty
Price per person
SWCP-P-EX1
8 Days / 9 Nights
13 miles per day
Challenging
From £820
Average miles infoAverage miles per day 13 miles per day
Tour code: SWCP-P-EX1
Difficulty infoLevel of difficulty Challenging

8 Days / 9 Nights (SWCP-P-EX1)

This itinerary lists our preferred overnight stops for this package. Transfers are included when you are staying away from the trail.

Additional nights can be added at any stage along the walk and we would be delighted to adjust it for you.

All of our prices are per person based on two people sharing a room. Our packages include all accommodation, baggage transfers and full information pack.

Additional information

You will be required to take a number of ferry journeys across estuaries during this section of the South West Coast Path. The timings and availability of these ferries vary throughout the year. If a service is disrupted there are a number of alternatives available, including taxi transfers. We will advise you of all your options.

Single room & solo walker supplements

Single rooms are available at a supplement which covers the additional costs of a single room or single occupancy of a twin or double room.

  • Standard: £45 per night

As we incur additional costs for transferring a single bag there is a solo walker supplement of £10 per day in addition to the single supplement.

Arrive Travel to Plymouth for your first night's accommodation
1
Day 1 Plymouth to Noss-Mayo 12.5 miles / 20 km
2
Day 2 Noss-Mayo to Bigbury-on-Sea 14.5 miles / 23 km
3
Day 3 Bigbury-on-Sea to Salcombe 13 miles / 21 km
4
Day 4 Salcombe to Torcross 12.5 miles / 20 km
5
Day 5 Torcross to Dartmouth 10.5 miles / 17 km
6
Day 6 Dartmouth to Paignton 17 miles / 28 km
7
Day 7 Paignton to Teignmouth 14 miles / 23 km
8
Day 8 Teignmouth to Exmouth 8 miles / 13 km
Depart Onward travel from Exmouth

Prices

Standard
Good quality B&Bs, Guest Houses & Hotels
£820 per person

Good quality and comfortable B&Bs, guest houses and some hotels located as close to the trail as possible. We will prioritise en-suite facilities or a private bathroom, although in remote areas with limited accommodation this may not always be possible.

SWCP-P-EX2
10 Days / 11 Nights
10 miles per day
Moderate
From £1015
Average miles infoAverage miles per day 10 miles per day
Tour code: SWCP-P-EX2
Difficulty infoLevel of difficulty Moderate

10 Days / 11 Nights (SWCP-P-EX2)

This itinerary lists our preferred overnight stops for this package. Transfers are included when you are staying away from the trail.

Additional nights can be added at any stage along the walk and we would be delighted to adjust it for you.

All of our prices are per person based on two people sharing a room. Our packages include all accommodation, baggage transfers and full information pack.

Additional information

You will be required to take a number of ferry journeys across estuaries during this section of the South West Coast Path. The timings and availability of these ferries vary throughout the year. If a service is disrupted there are a number of alternatives available, including taxi transfers. We will advise you of all your options.

Single room & solo walker supplements

Single rooms are available at a supplement which covers the additional costs of a single room or single occupancy of a twin or double room.

  • Standard: £45 per night

As we incur additional costs for transferring a single bag there is a solo walker supplement of £10 per day in addition to the single supplement.

Arrive Travel to Plymouth for your first night's accommodation
1
Day 1 Plymouth to Noss-Mayo 12.5 miles / 20 km
2
Day 2 Noss-Mayo to Bigbury-on-Sea 14.5 miles / 23 km
3
Day 3 Bigbury-on-Sea to Salcombe 13 miles / 21 km
4
Day 4 Salcombe to Torcross 12.5 miles / 20 km
5
Day 5 Torcross to Dartmouth 10.5 miles / 17 km
6
Day 6 Dartmouth to Brixham 11 miles / 18 km
7
Day 7 Brixham to Paignton 6 miles / 10 km
8
Day 8 Paignton to Babbacombe 7.5 miles / 12 km
9
Day 9 Babbacombe to Teignmouth 7 miles / 11 km
10
Day 10 Teignmouth to Exmouth 8 miles / 13 km
Depart Onward travel from Exmouth

Prices

Standard
Good quality B&Bs, Guest Houses & Hotels
£1015 per person

Good quality and comfortable B&Bs, guest houses and some hotels located as close to the trail as possible. We will prioritise en-suite facilities or a private bathroom, although in remote areas with limited accommodation this may not always be possible.

South West Coast Path Accommodation

All of the accommodation that we reserve for you has been personally selected by our expert team to ensure it meets our exacting standards. We regularly review our extensive database.

We prioritise accommodation as close to the walking trail as possible. Occasionally, your accommodation may be located a short distance from the trail, or you may need to spend more than one night in the same place, in which case we will provide return transfers.

Travel Information

As an environmentally conscious tour operator, we actively encourage the use of public transport by providing clients with a detailed breakdown of travel options in their information packs. The following information may help with your pre-trip planning.

Getting to Plymouth
By Air

Nearest international airports: London Heathrow and London Gatwick.

From Heathrow Airport, the Heathrow Express operates services to London Paddington. From Gatwick, take the Gatwick Express to Victoria Station. From here you can connect to London Paddington via the London Underground.

There are direct trains from London Paddington Station to Plymouth (journey time 3 hours).

By Public Transport

Nearest railway station: Plymouth Train Station

Plymouth Railway Station has many rail routes serving London and the rest of the UK. Journey time from London Paddington is around 3 hours.

National Express coaches also serve Plymouth direct from London Victoria.

By Car

Plymouth is approximately a 5 hour drive from London. There is no secure long term parking in Plymouth although there are several long stay car parks. However, leaving your car at one of these car parks is at your own risk and the parking can often be very busy and expensive in the summer months, so we always advise public transport is the best option.

Departing from Exmouth
By Air

Nearest international airports: London Heathrow and London Gatwick.

From Exmouth, there are regular train services to London Paddington (journey time 3 hours). From Paddington Station, the Heathrow Express offers services to the Airport. For Gatwick, take the London Underground from London Paddington to Victoria Station, and from here you can connect to the Airport on the Gatwick Express.

By Public Transport

Nearest railway station: Exmouth

From Exmouth, there are regular trains to London Paddington (journey time 3 hours) and Exeter St Davids.

As the train services can be very busy, we recommend booking in advance.

By Car

If you need to return to Plymouth to collect your car you will need to take the train from Exmouth to Plymouth (journey time 2 hours).

Additional Days

We would be delighted to arrange additional accommodation for you along the South West Coast Path – Plymouth to Exmouth.

You may wish to plan a rest day or have an additional night at any of the locations along the route which offer activities or sightseeing opportunities – we’ve made some suggestions below. Please request this when you make an enquiry.

Plymouth
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  • Explore the cobbled streets of Plymouth’s famous Barbican Waterfront
  • Visit the Plymouth Gin Distillery, one of the oldest working distilleries in England
  • Set sail with Plymouth Boat Trips to explore the incredible coastal line and learn about the history and heritage of the area
  • Visit the Mayflower Museum and follow the voyage of the Pilgrims to the New World
  • Wander through the many charming galleries and shops in the city
Salcombe
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  • Explore clear blue waters by boat, kayak or paddleboard
  • Browse the beautiful boutique shops lining the high street
  • Learn about the maritime history of Salcombe at the Salcombe Maritime Museum
  • Wander through the exotic gardens at Overbeck’s House, and enjoy a seasonal guided tour of the estate and museum
  • Sample multi-award-winning gin cocktails at the legendary Salcombe Distilling Company
Dartmouth
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  • Visit Dartmouth Castle, spectacularly located and offering stunning views across the estuary 
  • Take a relaxing circular boat trip along the river with Dartmouth River Cruise
  • Explore Dartmouth Museum and take in the fascinating history of Dartmouth and its surroundings
  • Enjoy a guided tour of the historic Britannia Royal Naval College
  • Visit National Trust Property Coleton Fishacre and discover its enchanting gardens
Exmouth
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  • Soak up the sun, sea and sand on the two miles of golden beach
  • Get up close and personal with a wide variety of raptors and owls at the Hawkridge Bird of Prey Centre
  • Sail, waterski, swim, play tennis, or take a pony ride, a river cruise or a fishing trip – there are so many activities to enjoy!

Make an enquiry

South West Coast Path – Plymouth to Exmouth

Need something more tailored?
Contact us via email:
enquiries@absoluteescapes.com

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