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Coves and cliffs

tooltipDiscovering Britain walk

Discover a changing coastal landscape in South Devon

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Explore this dramatic coastline of steep cliffs and hidden coves. It’s a wonderful place to walk and uncover the stories of this ever-changing landscape.

Discover evidence of dramatic earth movements and the powerful forces of nature. Find out why a red cliff collapsed into the sea while white cliffs were blasted apart with dynamite.

Compare flaky black rocks with pink ‘Devon marble’. See where rocks were taken away by day and drugs were brought in by dead of night. Learn of genteel Victorians with their bathing machines and the modern adventure sport of coasteering. You can also enjoy some stunning views and a ride on a restored cliff railway. 

This walk explores the tremendous diversity of rocks found along this stretch of coast. Discover how their different properties have created the landforms that you can see and have influenced human activities.

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The walk also raises some important questions about human intervention along the coastline. 

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Walk Info

Distance:

3 miles

Level:
The paths and lanes are very steep in places

tooltipThe paths and lanes are very steep in places

Suitable for:
Dogs are only allowed on the beaches at particular times of year (check notices)

tooltipDogs are only allowed on the beaches at particular times of year (check notices)

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Region:
South West England
Setting:
Seaside
Landscape:
Changing landscapes Shaping the landscape Exploiting the landscape
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Start:
Anstey’s Cove Road car park
Finish:
Babbacombe Cricket Club
Getting there:

tooltipNearest station Torquay (3 miles); served by direct services from London and local routes

tooltip2 miles from the centre of Torquay off the A379 Babbacombe Road; free car park on Anstey’s Cove Road

tooltipCatch routes 11 and 32 running between Torquay and St Marychurch and alight at the Palace Hotel on Babbacombe Road

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Babbacombe

Cliff fall at Oddicombe Beach
Jenny Lunn © RGS-IBG Discovering Britain

Babbacombe

Pebbles at Anstey's Cove
Jenny Lunn © RGS-IBG Discovering Britain

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Route map

Select pins on the map to find out more about each point of interest on the walk

Walk kit

Choose between an audio or written guide: download and enjoy!

Downloads

Written guide
A flat route mostly on urban streets

tooltipHelp with downloading - Double-click the icon to download this PDF file. You can save it to your computer or open it now. The file is designed as a booklet. To print it choose ‘Booklet Printing’ from your printer options.

Audio guide
A flat route mostly on urban streets

tooltipHelp with downloading - Double-click the icon to download this ZIP file of the audio commentary (mp3 files) and accompanying booklet (PDF) which contains maps and directions. You can save the audio files to your computer then add them to your mp3 device. This will vary for each device but you can use any supplied software (such as iTunes, Windows Media Player) or drag and drop the files. The PDF is designed as a booklet. To print it choose ‘Booklet Printing’ from your printer options.

Extras
A flat route mostly on urban streets

tooltipHelp with downloading - Double click to download this GPX file and load it on to your GPS device.

Photo Gallery

Find out what you might see on the walk - click on an image to view full size

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Comments

Find out what other people said about this walk

This is a lovely little walk along some fantastic coastline. I don't think that I have been to another location that packed so much different geology in such a short distance. Wonderful rocks showing different environmental settings from deep ocean to shallow seas to volcanic intrusions, it has the lot.

Bob Maynard, Exeter

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Links

Find out more about the walk story and places of interest along the route

External links open in a new window


Anstey’s Cove

Information about the facilities and activities available at Anstey's Cove

http://ansteyscove.info/

Babbacombe Cliff Railway

Find out about the history of the railway and its technology as well as opening times

http://www.babbacombecliffrailway.co.uk

Babbacombe Downs

Visitor information about accommodation, restaurants and activities at Babbacombe cliffs

http://www.babbacombedowns.co.uk

Babbacombe Model Village

A trip to the model village and gardens could be combined with the walk

http://www.model-village.co.uk

Cary Arms

Find out about the accommodation, bar and restaurant and other activities on offer

http://www.caryarms.co.uk/

The English Riviera

Comprehensive visitor planning for a trip or holiday to Torbay

http://www.englishriviera.co.uk

Kent’s Cavern

These spectacular caves are well worth a visit whether you are interested in geology or prehistoric humans

http://www.kents-cavern.co.uk/

Torbay Coast & Countyside Trust

Find out about people who help to look after Torbay's wildlife and heritage

http://www.countryside-trust.org.uk/

Babbacombe Beach

Information about the facilities available at the beach

http://www.torbay.gov.uk/index/yourbay/beaches/torquaybeaches/babbacombebeach.htm

Babbacombe Cricket Club

Find out about the cricket club which has a very strange pitch

http://www.babbacombecricketclub.co.uk/

Babbacombe house sale (24 February 2010)

Read the news story about the person who bought a house whose garden fell into the sea only days afterwards

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1253160/Homeowner-paid-150-000-cliff-property-loses-garden-5-000-tonne-rock-fall.html#ixzz27Uqa2iC6

Bygones

A visitor attraction in St Marychurch which recreates scenes from different historical periods

http://www.bygones.co.uk

Dartmouth Steam Railway and Riverboat Company

Try the Teignmouth Circular, a trip by boat and bus that will give you spectacular views of the coast from the sea

http://www.dartmouthrailriver.co.uk

English Riviera Geopark

Discover more about this area's designation as one of the Global Geoparks

http://www.englishrivierageopark.org.uk/

Oddicombe Beach

Information about the facilities available at the beach

http://www.torbay.gov.uk/index/yourbay/beaches/torquaybeaches/oddicombebeach.htm

Torquay Museum

Visit the museum to find out more about local history

http://www.torquaymuseum.org

Credits

The RGS-IBG would like to thank the following people and organisations for their assistance in producing this Discovering Britain walk

 

Pat Wilson for creating the walk, taking photographs and providing the audio commentary

 

Jenny Lunn for editing the walk materials and acting as narrator

 

Rory Walsh for editing the walk resources

 

Caroline Millar for editing the audio files

 

Torquay Museum and Francis Frith for kind permission to reproduce archive images

thank you
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