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From the Blog

Hope Cove: the South Devon fishing village with something for everyone?

Posted by Sophie Hesp on Apr 16, 2021

A visitor's guide to our brand new location

To celebrate the launch of our latest property to join the Perfect Stays portfolio, we’re bringing you an insider’s guide to the charming slice of South Devon that is Hope Cove. Loved for its tranquil water, beautiful coastal walks and beachside dining spots, we break down a handful of recommendations nearby.

For keen coast path walkers

Hope Cove is the starting point for a handful of lovely seaside walks, being within easy reach of Salcombe, Bantham, Thurlestone and Kingsbridge. The village is split into Inner Hope and Outer Hope so depending where you set off, there’s a good mix of short, circular walks as well as some more challenging routes to choose from. For dramatic views and towering clifftops, try the Bolt Head trail. It covers just under five miles and starting out from the beach car park at Mouthwell Sands in Outer Hope, means you can easily admire the traditional thatched roof cottages that are synonymous with the village.

From the car park, follow the lane to the left and continue on towards Hope Cove’s second sandy stretch, known as Harbour Beach. If it’s a more leisurely walk you’re going for, it’s well worth heading down to the water to dip your toes and watch the fishermen bring in the day’s catch. From the beach, you can then pick up the South West Coast Path signposted towards Salcombe, where the route climbs gently upwards to the Bolt Tail headland. Said to be the site of an Iron Age promontory fort, from the tip you’ll be rewarded with views across Bantham and Burgh Island, and even as far as Cornwall's Lizard Point if the weather is clear.

Heading on through Bolberry Down, you’ll follow a patchwork of foot paths and lanes on the return journey, before tracking the hedge line across rolling Devon fields and back towards Outer Hope. Full details of this route can be found here, and with both of Hope Cove’s beaches being dogs-on-leads-friendly either seasonally or year-round, it’s a great option for tiring out four-legged walkers too.

For watersports enthusiasts

With great beaches come endless opportunities for watersports. Like a lot of seaside towns in South Devon, Hope Cove’s crystal-clear waters make it a popular spot amongst stand-up paddle boarders. Harbour Beach is sheltered from beating winds and lashing tides, so beginners will feel instantly at home with miles of ocean to look out on. The Kingsbridge Estuary is within easy reach and spotting the village’s friendly local seals and occasional pod of dolphins will make each paddle all the more magical. 

For the more adventurous, there’s scuba diving around the Outer Hope reef, coasteering with Adventure South at Gara Rock or windsurfing in nearby South Milton Sands, which all come highly recommended. If you’re looking to hire equipment in the local area, you’ll find fantastic independents like SUP Away, Waterborn and Triocean Surf, who are all on hand with expert advice.

And of course a trip to South Devon simply isn’t complete without a boat trip, so be sure to take a look at the scenic tours and wildlife watching opportunities setting off from Salcombe and Kingsbridge.  

For hungry travellers 

For those who’d prefer to watch from the sidelines with a bite to eat, Hope Cove has plenty of incredible dining options. Arguably the local’s favourite, The Cove combines beautiful homecooked food with local craft beer, original live music and a whole host of sporting events that make it an inviting foodie hub for all. Their menu features fresh but hearty breakfasts, locally caught seafood ranging from traditional fish and chips to salt and pepper calamari, a dedicated pizza kitchen, plus their sweet and sticky desserts. Winner of Food Drink Devon’s ‘best casual dining’ and ‘best bar’ titles in recent years, The Cove is just the spot to roll out of the sea, cosy up with a blanket and hunker down with a wholesome meal. 

For something more intimate, book a bubble at The Lobster Pod Bistro. Set to re-open from 17th May, the restaurant’s four glass-fronted domes offer a unique dining option, each looking out to sea. When it’s time to order, expect generous sharing platters, fresh soup and chowder and of course, the bistro’s signature lobster dishes, all perfect for sharing over a bottle of wine. 

If the pods aren’t for you, why not laze in a sea-view hammock, cosy up in the cabin or for special celebrations, ask the restaurant about their lobster picnic, where you can enjoy an al fresco lunch for two on Harbour Beach. 

For Sunday lunch and a Bloody Mary, we recommend making a reservation at Hope Cove House, or for traditional pub food, head to the Hope and Anchor. Further afield you’ll find the best burgers at Beachhouse and some tempting seafood options at Oceans Restaurant in Bolberry. 

For all the family

We’re excited to be making our big debut in Hope Cove and welcoming Tamarisks to our portfolio. The ultimate lookout spot positioned high above Harbour Beach, this historic home blends panoramic sea views with beautiful coastal interiors. 

A pizza oven and outdoor kitchen looking out across the ocean mean you can watch the family playing on the beach below while dinner cooks al fresco. Children will love watching films in the newly-installed media den, while the grown-ups enjoy a cocktail on the terrace at sunset. Take a look at our new Hope Cove addition here and secure a family stay at Tamarisks from October 2021.  

Image credits: 'Walks' images courtesy of Ryan Elliott and caro-jon-son via Flickr | All other images are our own or from Unsplash.

Sophie Hesp profile image

Posted by Sophie Hesp

When she's not out for brunch, Sophie loves exploring the coast path with her partner and Loki, her lurcher. She writes about all things Cornwall and is a strong believer that there’s no such thing as too many house plants.

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