Brixham and Dartmouth can be reached by boat but are within 30-45 minutes by car and are highly recommended. Salcombe is an exquisite resort with lovely shops and restaurants and takes about an hour to reach by car depending on traffic. Totnes is a charming and quirky town with a medieval castle at its heart and attractive shops lining its main street. Nearby is beautiful Dartington, a 1200 acre estate with visitor attractions and a year round programme of events. Dartmoor is also well worth a visit but do your research if you plan to hike as bad weather can take you by surprise. Ashburton is a beautiful little town some 18 miles from Torquay crammed full of antique shops and tea rooms. Exeter has a large shopping centre and a cathedral. It is an easy drive or can be reached by train from Torquay station. Historic Plymouth and all its attractions is just over an hour away by car or train. The famous Eden Project in Cornwall can be reached by car in under two hours depending on traffic.
Ferries and Boat trips
Western Lady Ferry Service to Brixham
The best way to get to Brixham, this 35-minute trip across the bay brings you right into Brixham’s picturesque harbour for £2 single or £3.50 return per person. Ferries run from April until the end of October and leave from North Quay (next to the bridge crossing the harbour). Turn up and buy a ticket at the Western Lady ticket kiosk at Vaughn Parade Torquay but make sure you get on the right boat and allow time to queue in the Summer. For a full timetable and more information click on the button below.
Dartmouth Day Cruise on the Dart Venturer
The Dart Venturer also leaves from Torquay’s North Quay and sails along the coast to the beautiful port of Dartmouth every day between April 1st and October 31st.
It departs from Torquay at 11.05 and sails, via Brixham to Dartmouth. The return journey leaves Dartmouth at 15.30 arriving back in Torquay at 17.00.
This trip is weather dependent so call 01803 555872 to check conditions are suitable or call in to the Western Lady ticket kiosk at Vaughn Parade Torquay. You can find out more information by clicking the link below:
Take a steam train, river boat and bus around Paignton, Dartmouth and Totnes on this famous and award winning tour which runs from March to November.
From Torquay take the number 12 bus to Paignton. There is a stop harbourside (on the opposite side of the road from Boots and Debenhams) or another stop by The Pavilion. Get off at Bus Station Paignton (11) in Gerston Road and the Dartmouth Steam Railway is just round the corner (make sure you don’t go to Paignton Station which is nearby). Board a steam train on a 30-minute journey which runs for 7 miles along the spectacular Torbay coast and then through the wooded slopes bordering the Dart Estuary to Kingswear.
At Kingswear you get off and take the passenger ferry across the river to Dartmouth. After exploring this beautiful little town you board a riverboat and sail up the Dart on a 90-minute journey to the colourful, market town of Totnes. From here you return by bus (open top bus if the weather permits) back to Torquay. For full details ring 01803 555872 or book on the website by clicking the link below.
National Trust Properties
Holiday home to famous Torquay author Agatha Christie, Greenway is about 30 minutes south of Torquay on the River Dart.
Agatha Christie described Greenway as “the loveliest place in the world” and each room in her former house is filled with mementos from her travels, just as she left them. There is a beautiful garden with a boathouse and views of the River Dart. Below the house is a path that leads down to a ferry crossing to picturesque Dittisham on the opposite bank of the river.
If you want to arrive by car you must book your parking space in advance a day or two ahead of your visit. This can be done by calling 01803 842382. You can find out other ways to arrive by clicking on the link to the National Trust website below:
Wonderful 24 acre gardens and a beautiful house built in the glamorous Arts and Craft style make Coleton Fishacre, the former home of the D’Oyly Carte family, highly recommended. If you walk down a valley of tree ferns to the gate at the bottom of the garden you can access the South West Coast Path and some stunning views of the rocky coastline. For more information click on the link below.
It is about an hour’s drive away but there is an amazing walk through the Teign Gorge from Castle Drogo via Fingles Bridge – the last castle to be built in England and a National Trust Property.