South West Coast Path

South West Coast Path

An epic walk along the coastline of Cornwall, Devon, Somerset and Dorset.

3 to 12 nights
630 miles
Easy to Demanding / Strenuous

From £355 per person

Find your holiday

About the trail

At 630 miles (1,008 km) in length, the South West Coast Path is Britain’s longest waymarked footpath and the ultimate challenge for any long distance walker. The route curls around the entire peninsula of Devon and Cornwall, rounds the south-western tip of England at Land’s End, and follows the southern shore through the dramatic scenery of Dorset, constituting a major portion of the England Coast Path.

Although we provide some gentler itineraries, on most holidays, expect stiff climbs on jaw-dropping coastal trails; mile after mile of sea views; and plenty of cream teas and Cornish pasties enjoyed in seaside towns. Walking the South West Coast Path is a challenge, but an immensely (and often tastily) rewarding one.

We’ve broken the full SWCP into ten stages so you can pick and choose your favourite stretches of coast. We also offer a choice of short breaks along the path, which you can find on the South West Coast Path Short Breaks page. If you’re looking for a circular tour, take a look at our walking holiday around the far point of Land’s End Peninsula and inland along St Michael’s Way.

Choose your route

  • This route includes dog friendly tour options North Devon
  • Cornwall's Atlantic Coast - North
  • Cornwall's Atlantic Coast - South
  • Far West of Cornwall
  • This route includes dog friendly tour options South West Cornwall
  • This route includes dog friendly tour options South Cornwall
  • South Devon
  • This route includes dog friendly tour options Tor Bay and Babbacombe Bay
  • East Devon
  • Dorset

Dog friendly tours available

Dogs are welcome on select routes along this trail. Look for the pawprint icon when choosing your holiday.

Trail running tours available

We also organise trail running holidays along this route. Find out more.

About this route

5 to 8 nights
70 miles
Moderate to Demanding / Strenuous
2nd January to 24th December

From £715 per person

South Devon

South Devon’s coastline is one of spectacular contrasts. It begins with wave-battered sandstone cliffs and the rugged headlands that have claimed countless shipwrecks, but slinks away beneath the trees along tranquil wooded estuaries.

Inland sections enjoy the patchwork fields of lush, rolling farmland. If variety is what you look for in a trail, this is the right section of the South West Coast Path for you.

Available tours

Code Tour Duration Difficulty Price per person
SDEV1 From Plymouth to Brixham 5 nights, 4 days walking Demanding / Strenuous £715
SDEV2 From Plymouth to Brixham 7 nights, 6 days walking Moderate / Demanding £970
SDEV3 From Plymouth to Brixham 8 nights, 7 days walking Moderate £1075

South Devon 5 nights, 4 days walking

£NNN per person
  • Itinerary
  • What's included?
  • Extra nights?
  • Tour facts
  • Route profile
  • Travel info
  • Weather
  • Holiday Highlights

Important information

The Wembury to Noss Mayo ferry operates from April to September.  If the ferry is not running, the alternative is to take a taxi.

The River Erme between Noss Mayo and Bigbury-on-Sea has no ferry service. Therefore, it is necessary to ford the river at low tide.  Before booking please check the tide times by clicking here.  The alternative is an 8 mile detour around the river.

The Bigbury to Bantham Ferry operates between April and September.  If it is not operating the only alternatives are a 9 mile detour around the Avon Estuary or to take a taxi.  If you are booking out of season and would like to add an extra days walking to walk the 9 mile Avon Estuary Walk detour, rather than take a taxi, please contact us.

 

Start

Travel to Plymouth where your first night's accommodation will be booked

Day 1

Plymouth to River Erme/Mothecombe(T). 17 miles (27km) / 3117 ft (950 m) ascent

Day 2

River Erme/Mothecombe(T) to Salcombe(L). 18 miles (28.5km) / 3100 ft (945 m) ascent

Day 3

Salcombe(L) to Stoke Fleming. 18 miles (29km) / 3163 ft (964 m) ascent

Day 4

Stoke Fleming to Brixham. 16 miles (25.5km) / 2185 ft (666 m) ascent

Finish

Depart from Brixham after breakfast

Your Itinerary

This itinerary lists our preferred overnight stops for this tour. Sometimes there may be a shortage of available accommodation in a preferred location, in which case we will transfer you from the trail to your accommodation and back again at no extra charge. Overnight stops marked with a (T) will always require transfers as standard.

Overnight stops marked with an (L) have very limited accommodation, and therefore more often than not will also require a transfer, particularly on bank holidays and weekends. We will use non-transfer accommodation wherever possible.

The daily mileages quoted are average trail miles only and do not include the distance from the trail to your accommodation. We do not expect you to have to travel more than a mile from the trail to your accommodation in most cases; should your accommodation be further than this, transfers will be provided as standard if practical. A very limited number of stops will require you to travel on foot up to two miles off the trail, however these instances will be clearly communicated to you if applicable.

Further transfers may also be required due to some accommodations having a two-night minimum booking policy, especially at weekends.

Below are the additional costs that may apply depending on your requirements. Dog-friendly tours are subject to a Daily Dog Charge, which will be listed below if applicable. Our standard prices per person are based upon two people sharing a room; if you are on your own, or are part of a group but require a room of your own, then the Solo Traveller or Single Supplements apply respectively:

A note about transfers
Solo Traveller Supplement
£60.00 per person / per night
Single Supplement
£55.00 per person / per night


You can add rest days at any of the overnight stops:

Extra night (Standard)
£65.00 per person / per night
Standard
Interactive
© Contours Walking Holidays South Devon map
Plymouth to Brixham
70 miles (112 km)
2nd January to 24th December

Holiday highlights

Visiting Dartmouth, with its cobbled marketplace, narrow streets, and spectacular sea defences.

Watching the vast number of local seabirds darting against a backdrop of wild flowers.

Arriving in Brixham, home to one of the largest fishing fleets in the UK.

What's included?

  • 5 nights' accommodation in en-suite rooms (where available) in selected B&B’s, hotels, inns and guesthouses along the trail, or a short distance away via taxi provided at our expense.
  • Breakfast each day.
  • Door to door luggage transfer.
  • Maps with the route marked on and a guidebook or route notes describing the trail.
  • An information pack containing an itinerary, instructions on how to find your accommodation each night and a kit list.
  • Detailed travel instructions on how to get to the start of your holiday and back from the end of it.

Extra Nights & Rest Days

There is a lot to see in the historic port of Dartmouth.

You can add rest days at any of the overnight stops:

Extra night (Standard)
£65.00 per person / per night

Tour Facts

Total distance: 70 miles (112 km)
Duration: 5 nights, 4 days walking
Minimum daily distance: 16 miles (25.5 km)
Maximum daily distance: 18 miles (29 km)
Code: SDEV1 Grade: Demanding / Strenuous
Season: 2nd January - 24th December
Start of holiday: Plymouth
End of holiday: Brixham

Route Profile

South Devon Route Profile

Travel Information

Useful information and travel links that will assist you in your plans to travel to the start of the holiday and back from the end of it are sent to you with your full tour pack. A summary is given below:

By Air - The most convenient major city and international airports are Exeter and Newquay.

By Rail - There is a rail station at the start of the trail (Plymouth). The nearest rail station to Brixham is at Paignton (about 5.5 miles way).

By Bus - Various buses run to Plymouth. Buses run from Brixham to Paignton.

From London - Trains runs from London Paddington station to Plymouth.

Return To The Start - The easiest way to return to the start of the trail is to take a taxi. Alternatively, you could take a bus/taxi from Brixham to Paignton & then the train from there to Plymouth, but this would take longer.

Weather Information

To find out more about the weather forecast for your chosen holiday's general location, please see the following websites:

  • MetCheck - This website allows you to look up detailed weather information for specific locations as far as six months in advance.
  • Met Office - This website shows regional area forecasts a few days in advance, with a general UK forecast description of up to 30 days in advance.
  • Mountain Forecast - This website shows what the forecast is like up on specific hills and fells, and offers forecasts a few days in advance.
"Signpost near Woodcombe Point" by David Hackett (2023) "Signpost near Woodcombe Point" by David Hackett (2023)
"Starehole Bay" by David Hackett (2023) "Starehole Bay" by David Hackett (2023)
"Abraham's Hole Beach" by David Hackett (2023) "Abraham's Hole Beach" by David Hackett (2023)
"Bantham Boathouse" by David Hackett (2023) "Bantham Boathouse" by David Hackett (2023)
"Stonechat on Gammon Head" by David Hackett (2023) "Stonechat on Gammon Head" by David Hackett (2023)
"Maceley Cove" by Raymond Riggs (2023) "Maceley Cove" by Raymond Riggs (2023)
"Bolt Head" by Raymond Riggs (2023) "Bolt Head" by Raymond Riggs (2023)
"Bugle Hole" by Raymond Riggs (2023) "Bugle Hole" by Raymond Riggs (2023)
"Hoist Point" by Raymond Riggs (2023) "Hoist Point" by Raymond Riggs (2023)
"South Milton Sands" by Raymond Riggs (2023) "South Milton Sands" by Raymond Riggs (2023)
"Walking on Bolberry Down" by Bob Parkinson (2019) "Walking on Bolberry Down" by Bob Parkinson (2019)
"View back to Hoist Point" by Bob Parkinson (2019) "View back to Hoist Point" by Bob Parkinson (2019)
"Dartmouth Marina" by Bob Parkinson (2019) "Dartmouth Marina" by Bob Parkinson (2019)
"Blackpool Sands" by Bob Parkinson (2019) "Blackpool Sands" by Bob Parkinson (2019)
"Newton Ferrers" by Bob Parkinson (2019) "Newton Ferrers" by Bob Parkinson (2019)

Customer reviews from the South Devon

“Well organised and good weather. It's what Contours do well... good accommodation, good luggage transfer, all the potential problems highlighted.”
Mr Collins, UK
“It was sunny and the scenery was fantastic.”
Mr Carr, UK
“Everything worked perfectly and we can’t think of one thing that went wrong or to complain about! Well done everyone! We can’t wait to book another holiday with you!”
Mrs Edmondson, UK
“The hiking was good. We unfortunately got a nasty bit of food poisoning, which took us off the path for 3 days. People were very kind to us and Contours staff were helpful with making necessary adjustments with accommodation and luggage transfer. We soon were able to recover and get back to walking. The hikes from Torcross to Dartmouth and from Dartmouth to Brixham were very beautiful.”
Mr Stallings, USA
“Excellent walking.”
Ms Towndrow, UK
“All very well organised including all the luggage transfers.”
Dr Campbell, UK
“We both thoroughly enjoyed the walk; can’t believe we had wall to wall sunshine all the way. Thank you for organising all the accommodation, taxis and luggage transfer, it all went well, it helped us to enjoy the walk even more so. A lot of B&Bs and taxis companies spoke very highly of Contours. Thank you once again and here’s to our next challenge for Contours, Welsh coastline!”
Mr Rougeolle, UK
“Lovely holiday. Enjoyed every minute.”
Mr Duthoit, UK
“Spectacular scenery.”
Mr Collings, UK
Find your holiday