10 things to do in Stoke Fleming
The cliff top village of Stoke Fleming is one of the gems of the South Hams in Devon. It’s just a few miles from the hubbub of Dartmouth and boasts one of England’s finest beaches on its doorstep. Here’s our suggested things to do in Stoke Fleming to help you make the most of the benefits of small village life and the coastline at your disposal.
1. Relax at Blackpool Sands
Undoubtably the top thing to do in Stoke Fleming is to spend a day at the award-winning Blackpool Sands beach (above). This large sheltered cove on the South Devon coast has a Mediterranean feel with its clear turquoise waters and woodland valley location.
The golden shoreline is made up of a fine shingle. There are rocks to explore at either end of the beach and a fresh water river on the southern end which is ideal for paddling. The main beach shelves steeply, so families with young children need to supervise them at all times.
Facilities at Blackpool Sands include The Venus Cafe, a beach shop, toilets and water sports hire.
You can walk to the beach from Stoke Fleming village but be aware that it’s a steep climb back up. Parking is chargeable at peak times of year and can be paid by card. Dogs are allowed between November and March. Check the beach website for exact dates.
2. Walk the South West Coast Path
Stoke Fleming is the ideal place to start a walk on the South West Coast Path that runs through the village.
Pick up the path outside St Peter’s Church and follow it South past Blackpool Sands and on towards Slapton Sands and Start Point. Or head North towards Little Dartmouth and Dartmouth Castle.
Here’s some more coast walks in South Devon.
3. Try a water sport
South Devon faces the English Channel making its sheltered waters ideal for kayaking and paddle boarding. You can hire and launch both from the Venus beach shop at Blackpool Sands. Wet suits are also available.
Here’s more places to try water sports in South Devon.
4. Visit the playground
If you are holidaying with children you’ll find the Venn Lane playground, a basket ball hoop and large recreation area behind the Village Hall.
5. Stay during an event
Stoke Fleming hosts events during the year and is also a great place to stay during festivals in nearby Dartmouth.
In Stoke Fleming itself you’ll find the Tunes on the Sands music festival held at Blackpool Sands and the Stoke Fleming Annual Show in the village itself. Just down the road at Old Stone Farm there’s Woofstock – an award-winning family and dog-friendly festival held each August.
6. Discover Slapton Sands
South of Stoke Fleming is a long stretch of beach running from Strete Gate to Torcross. This is Slapton Sands and is another popular place for a beach day. There are car parks in the middle of the bay and at either end of this three mile shingle bank that backs onto the Slapton Ley Nature Reserve.
A monument in the middle car park and a recovered tank on display in the Torcross car park are reminders of Slapton Sand’s role in the rehearsals for the D-Day landings.
Take a look at more of our favourite beaches in the South Hams.
7. Spot wildlife at Slapton Ley
Slapton Ley Nature Reserve is the largest natural fresh water lake in South West England and an ideal place for wildlife spotting. You can access the reserve from any of the car parks on Slapton Sands.
Find out more about birdwatching spots in South Devon.
8. Visit Dartmouth Castle
Dartmouth Castle was built in the 14th Century as the town’s first line of defence against foreign invaders. Its guns and a chain, drawn across the mouth of the river between here and Kingswear Castle on the east bank, protected what was once a significant military and trading port.
Today you can visit the Castle’s ammunition stores, find out about the lifestyle of the small group of soldiers stationed here and climb up to the roof for fabulous views of the river, town and English Channel. The Castle is run by English Heritage. Check its website for opening times.
It’s possible to walk to Dartmouth Castle from Stoke Fleming using the South West Coast Path. If you prefer to drive then use Dartmouth Park and Ride in the summer months and walk to the Castle along the river. It is about one mile away. There is very limited free parking at the Castle and along the roads leading to it.
9. Explore Dartmouth and the surrounding area
As well as the Castle, Dartmouth has plenty of attractions for holidaymakers to enjoy. It’s the starting point for tours by boat, steam train and on foot along the Dart Valley. You can also lose yourself for hours in the independent shops and art galleries to be found in the town’s Medieval streets.
Read more in our guide to free things to do in Dartmouth.
10. Places to eat in Stoke Fleming
If you like quality cuisine it’s abundant in Stoke Fleming. Whether you are looking for a snack at the beach, the perfect Sunday lunch or a romanic dinner for two, you really can’t go wrong.
Here’s our suggested places to eat in Stoke Fleming:
You can’t miss this independent eatery and bar on the main road through Stoke Fleming. It specialises in local produce sourced within seven miles – hence the name, Radius 7. Expect dishes inspired by the sea and local landscape. Its roast dinners are incredible.
The Green Dragon
You’re sure of a warm welcome and excellent home cooked dishes at Stoke Fleming’s pub, The Green Dragon. It sits at the heart of the village and has cosy indoor seating or two beer gardens. Its menu includes gourmet burgers, freshly prepared pizzas and plenty of pub favourites.
This eatery at Blackpool Sands is no average beach cafe. Venus Cafe‘s menu is packed full of Devon produce, seafood and vegan dishes. You’ll also find a generous selection of cakes, snacks, drinks and ice creams to supplement your own picnic.
Michael Sutton’s cellar
Just outside the village you can find Michael Sutton’s Cellar which specialises in world wines. Check out its website for special tasting events including dishes to accompany bottles from its collection.
Find Stoke Fleming accommodation
If holidaying at this quintessentially Devonian village sounds like your ideal break then you must check out our Stoke Fleming cottages.
Get in touch with our team to find your perfect Devon holiday cottage.