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Why choose the South Hams?
The South Hams is one of the most beautiful areas in Devon. It is a government and geographic district that stretches from Torbay to Plymouth and includes part of the Dartmoor National Park at its northern border. To the south, the dramatic coastline extends for 51 miles and makes up the majority of the South Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, containing Sites of Special Scientific Interest, two national nature reserves and an abundance of plants and wildlife. The coastline includes many charming harbour and seaside towns and holds more clean water awards than anywhere else in Britain.
Where are the best places to visit in the South Hams?
Picture postcard towns are dotted all over South Hams. These beautiful locations have remained largely untouched for hundreds of years and retain lots of their original character and charm. Visit the coastal town of Salcombe and enjoy stunning views of the coast and surrounding countryside. Dartmouth, situated on the River Dart, is one of the most popular tourist spots in Devon. Enjoy a boat trip along the river or spend a day exploring the town’s rich history and independent shops and restaurants. The market towns of Totnes and Kingsbridge have a thriving community where you can find many antique and craft shops, museums and galleries.
Where are the best places to eat and drink in the South Hams?
With many villages and towns in close proximity to the sea, the South Hams is renowned for great seafood. But that’s not all; this area also produces fantastic fruit and vegetables as well as high quality local beef and lamb. Read on for our must visit places to eat:
Oyster Shack - This award winning seafood restaurant has just celebrated its 30th birthday. Prior to becoming a restaurant the site was an oyster farm where people would come to buy their fresh molluscs and the idea for a restaurant was born. The catch of the day influences what is on the menu on any given night and the oysters are so good they have a menu all of their own! The Oyster Shack even offers a takeaway service so you can cook it all in the comfort of your own home.
Dick and Wills Waterside Brasserie - Located in a stunning setting, enjoy views out over Salcombe Harbour whilst feasting on beautifully prepared food. Lots of local, fresh seafood can be found on the menu, including Salcombe carb and Salcombe lobster. This is a great spot for a romantic meal with your loved one.
Pie Street - Made from the finest local ingredients, Pie Street uses an old family recipe to lovingly craft delicious pies. Served with thick cut chips or roasted potatoes, and your choice of sauces, you’ll be full when you finish. Pie Street also cooks pies to take away and even have them available for you to cook at home.
Salcombe Dairy - Salcombe Dairy has been making ice cream for over 40 years and the recipe remains exactly the same to this day. They have won so many awards that it would take too long to list them all. Instead, why not just try for yourself and see why they are such deserving winners.
What are the best attractions in the South Hams?
The South Hams has some of the best beaches in the UK. Visit Bigbury Beach, Bantham Beach or Blackpool Sands and enjoy the golden sands and clear blue waters. Try your hand at surfing, windsurfing or kitesurfing; if you are a novice there are activity centres offering lessons.
Opposite Bigbury-on-sea beach is Burgh Island, a tidal island which at high tide is only accessible by the sea tractor. The island is famous for its connection to Agatha Christie; she stayed in the Burgh Island Hotel, an art deco inspired retreat, and wrote two of her novels here during the 1930’s.
With such beautiful scenery on offer you will want to get outdoors and explore. There are many great walking routes in the area, including the South West Coast Path and the Two Moors Way, spanning 100 miles from Ivybridge to Lynmouth.
If you want a family friendly day out why not visit Woodlands Family Theme Park, an all-weather amusement park with indoor play area, animal activities and water rides. Another great adventure is to discover South Hams by train with a trip on the South Devon Railway. Celebrating 50 years of operation, travel via steam train along the valley of the River Dart between Buckfastleigh and Totnes.
What is the weather like in the South Hams?
The weather in the South Hams is typically warmer than the rest of the UK with average temperatures reaching 21°C in the summer months, dropping to around 3 or 4°C in the winter months.