Best outdoor activities in South Devon this summer
If fresh air is top of your summer wish list you’ve come to the right place. There’s plenty of outdoor activities in South Devon from family attractions and adventurous activities, to country walks and beaches aplenty.
Here’s where to enjoy the great outdoors this summer:
Head to the beach
The most delightful way to enjoy the outdoors in Devon has to be with a visit to the beach.
Here in South Devon we have an abundance of them to delight all ages. From hidden coves around the mouth of the River Dart, to curving bars of nature reserve backed shingle and sandy bays where you can catch a wave, there’s South Devon beach for everyone.
If you want to take a dip, then take look at our guide to the best swimming spots.
Want to try kayaking, paddle boarding or surfing? You need our guide to water sports in Devon.
Book a boat trip
If you are staying with us in the South Hams there’s lots of choice for boat trips.
If you are after something a bit special, book a private charter. The Fizz Boat in Dartmouth offers breakfast, lunch and tea cruises with the option of bottomless bubbles. And the Greenway & Dittisham River Boat Company offer their little boat Hercule for private parties including drinks and nibbles.
There are even more boat and fishing trips available from nearby Brixham including dolphin watching tours.
Stretch your legs
Take a walk along South Devon’s share of the South West Coast Path to find hidden coves and spot plenty of wildlife. Here are some of our favourite coast walks in the South Hams.
South Devon also has some outstanding National Trust properties where you will find walks through colourful gardens, with river and sea views, as well as play areas for kids.
Of course, Dartmoor is also not far way. The National Park has hikes and strolls suitable for all abilities.
Crabbing is a firm favourite outdoor activity in South Devon.
Pick up an environmentally-friendly crabbing line in a local shop and head to the Embankment in Dartmouth, the pontoon in Dittisham, the mill pond at Stoke Gabriel or Brixham Harbour.
Visit these outdoor attractions in South Devon
If you are visiting South Devon with children, you might want to plan a few fun days out that don’t involve hauling all your stuff to the beach.
Here’s our recommendations for the best outdoor family attractions in South Devon:
This is one of Devon’s biggest days out with 2,500 animals across an 80 acre sub-tropical woodland. Visit Paignton Zoo to meet apes, giraffes, tigers, rhinos and lemurs.
This South Devon attraction has animals and farm-themed rides aplenty. Pennywell Farm is best suited to under 12s but teens also love cuddling the farm’s famous micro pigs.
Woodlands Theme Park
The majority of Woodlands Theme Park‘s attractions and rides are outdoors. Dare you ride the water slides, toboggan run or swinging pirate ship? There are also adventure playgrounds for all ages as well as a farm.
River Dart Country Park
If your family enjoys adventurous activities you will find plenty to do at River Dart Country Park near Ashburton. There’s adventure playgrounds, high ropes, water zorbing, kayaking and a swimming lake with pirate ship. Don’t forget your towels!
Totnes Rare Breeds Farm
This is a lovely little farm suitable for young kids with lots of opportunity to pet and meet rare breeds of sheep, goats, ducks and rabbits. Totnes Rare Breeds Farm can be combined with a ride on South Devon Railway and a visit to Dartmoor Otters and Butterfly Sanctuary at the other end of the train line.
Haldon Forest Park
As well as miles of walks and cycle paths around Haldon Forest Park, there’s a pump track, segway tours and Go Ape.
Where to stay in South Devon
Planning a future visit to South Devon? Get in touch with us to check availability in our accommodation in Dartmouth and the surrounding areas. We offer a variety of places to stay from romanic cottages and dog-friendly holiday lets to large family houses.