North Devon's Local Beaches

Croyde, Woolacombe, Lee Bay, Saunton; glorious golden sandy beaches or secret rocky coves. If you want to spend time on the beach then you’ve come to the right place. You’ll be spoilt for choice when you holiday at Lower Campscott Farm with North Devon’s glorious beaches right on your doorstep!

There’s a range of water based activities on offer including fantastic surfing opportunities on Croyde, Saunton, Woolacombe and Putsborough as well as swimming, rockpooling, bodyboarding, kayaking and coaststeering. Most of the beaches welcome dogs all year round too.

Lee Bay and Sandy Cove

Within walking distance of the farm, the sheltered bay with its small sandy beach and imposing rock formations at either side is particularly picturesque at low tide and ideal for rock-pooling. Head down to the water’s edge and you’ll find a smugglers’ path to the secret beach, Sandy Cove. There are steps leading up the cliff on the opposite side of Sandy Cove so if you want to visit at high water or do a circular walk round and back to the village you can.

Perfect for rock pooling, kayaking, walking and great for peace and tranquillity.

Ilfracombe Tunnels Beaches

The tunnels through the rock provide a unique access to the North Devon coast, carved by hand in the 1820s they lead to sheltered beaches and a tidal bathing pool. Voted third best rock-pooling destination in the UK, its fun for old and young alike. There is a charge per person to go through the tunnels to the beaches. Dogs are allowed through the tunnels on a lead but are not allowed on the beach.

Wildersmouth Beach, Ilfracombe

This ancient cove was a popular bay for smugglers. High sided cliffs drop down to a small rocky bay with shingle and sand. This bay is sheltered and peaceful and dogs are allowed all year round.

Hele Bay, Ilfracombe

Part sand, part shingle, Hele Bay is a great beach for families looking for a quiet seaside day out with facilities on hand. Rock pools, secret smugglers’ caves and at very low tide you can clamber around the rocks to ‘Fishing Rock’ or ‘Blythes Cove’. Popular with canoeists and kayakers with views out across the Bristol Channel so bring your binoculars to watch the large ships passing.

Watermouth Cove, Ilfracombe

A pretty, sheltered harbour noted for its spectacular views and shielded by the natural breakwater of Sexton’s Burrows. Watermouth Cove is a popular mooring for boats and offers easy access to the water for kayaks and small craft.

Mortehoe Beach – Rockham

A small tucked away bay of sand and rocks; its only accessible on foot – park in Mortehoe then there’s a  2km walk with steps down to the beach. Peaceful and secluded, dogs are welcome all year round and its perfect for rock-pooling at low tide with secret pools teaming with creatures waiting to be found – not ideal at high as access is restricted.

Barricane Beach

A delightful little beach known for its cowrie and other exotic shells which are washed here from the Caribbean. Set in a bay half a mile from the main Woolacombe beach it’s great for rock pooling and popular with surfers. Barricane is inaccessible at high tide when there is no exposed beach, welcomes dogs from October to April and is well known for its beach cafe which serves delicious curries – you can dine on the beach, bring your own wine as its unlicensed and watch the sun set over the sea.

Woolacombe Beach

Woolacombe Beach has received many awards recently: Voted Number 1 in the UK by Tripadvisor (February 2015), Number 4 in Europe, and Number 13 in the World! Woolacombe also holds the ‘England for Excellence Gold Award’ for best family resort and was voted the Best British Beach in the Mail On Sunday. Stretching between Morte Point and Baggy Point, this three-mile long stretch of golden sand is renowned for it’s cleanliness, water quality and facilities. Life guards ensure safe family swimming during the summer and surfers come from all over the country to enjoy the great waves and clean water. Park in Woolacombe or along Marine Drive which gives you access across the dunes to the quieter areas of the beach away from the village.

Putsborough Beach

Putsborough Sands forms the southern section of Woolacombe Sands. Popular with surfers, especially long boarders, Putsborough is the only beach in the area to have some protection from south and south-westerly winds, thanks to a headland known as Baggy Point. There’s plenty of parking and easy access via a long, sloping path; a well-stocked beach shop and a cafe serving delicious home-cooked food all year round (check for opening times in low season) and the loos are very modern and clean too! Dogs are welcome on certain areas of the beach at all times.

Croyde Bay

A crescent shaped golden sandy beach backed by sand dunes, Croyde Bay is popular with more experienced surfers and keen swimmers as well as sunbathers, and is rated as one of the best surfing beaches in the world. There is an RNLI Lifeguard service available from May to September throughout Easter weekend all October weekends and October Half Term. With food outlets close to the beach and places to hire boards, wetsuits and beach gear its a great family destination. There is car parking at either side of the beach and dogs are allowed from October to April.

Saunton Beach

A long golden sandy beach which is backed by the impressive Braunton Burrows a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Saunton Beach is particularly well-suited to beginner and intermediate surfers and good for swimmers and families, there are surf schools based in the car park along with a surf hire shop, cafe, restaurant and shop selling beach gear. Dogs are allowed on certain areas of the beach all year round and there is also a designated dog free area.

Saunton is currently the only beach in North Devon to have a Landeez all terrain wheelchair for hire. This wheelchair allows those who are less abled or disabled to have full enjoyment of the beach as it is able to traverse all areas and to be used in the shallows of the sea.

See this week’s tide timetable based on Woolacombe

Download a guide to North Devon Beaches

Farm holiday in Devon