The most sought after seaside towns

Oh I do like to be beside the seaside! Fortunately, if you choose to spend your holidays in the South West, you’re highly likely to be doing just that. With hundreds of miles of the South West Coast Path and plenty of beaches to suit everyone from families and dog walkers to serious hikers, you’re sure to find your own special piece of coastal paradise here.

South Devon is a particularly popular spot for beach holidays. Famous for its quaint little villages, narrow winding lanes and golden stretches of sand, it’s no wonder people choose to visit over and over again.

There's plenty more, quieter beaches to discover too!
The South Devon coast

The South West now dominates the Top Ten list of most expensive seaside towns to live, with house prices in Salcombe being named as the most costly in Britain, topping even the millionaire’s haunt of Sandbanks in Dorset. But it’s possible to have a taste of the high life without investing vast amounts of cash.

Salcombe is known as a yachting mecca and is a really fantastic place to spend your holidays. This lively waterside town has so much to offer, from pubs and restaurants to a plethora of independent shops. Set at the mouth of the Kingsbridge estuary, you can easily hop across on the ferry to the golden beaches at East Portlemouth or make your way to nearby North and South Sands beaches. You may, however, prefer to simply take a stroll and enjoy a refreshing local ice cream. Either way, if owning a waterfront property here is just a pipe dream, you can still have your own piece of this popular destination by renting a holiday cottage.

For a slice of the seaside high life, why not stay in Salcombe:

Salcombe from East Portlemouth
Ever desirable Salcombe is a summer mecca for sailors, shoppers, sun worshipers and socialites!

Or across the water in East Portlemouth:

Harbour Watch – One of East Portlemouth’s most desirable holiday properties


Another South Devon town, Dartmouth was ranked 5th in this seaside house price survey by Halifax, and is another of our favourite spots. Home to the Britannia Royal Naval College the town is steeped in maritime history; you can step back in time on the cobbled quayside at Bayard’s Cove where the Mayflower moored up in 1620 before taking the Pilgrim Fathers on their journey to discover the New World. Or how about a stroll beneath the wooden carvings of the Butterwalk, as you explore the numerous shops and cafes. Dartmouth is a lively town all year round, and makes a wonderful base for exploring the surrounding South Devon countryside.

Why not book a holiday cottage in historic Dartmouth:

Stunning Cotterbury in Dartmouth benefits from the use of a fantastic swimming pool!

Further west in Cornwall, Padstow (made famous by celebrity chef, Rick Stein) came 4th on the list whilst Wadebridge was 6th in the running and St Mawes came in 9th. There’s certainly no shortage of terrific seaside spots in Cornwall. By its very narrow nature it’s easy to cross from the rugged north beaches favoured by surfers, to the quaint fishing villages of the south coast.

Find your favourite holiday spot in Cornwall:

Talland Bay view
Talland Bay is home to a stunning development of coastal holiday homes

The elevated house prices generally reflect the fact that these areas have so much to offer. So even if you’re not in the market for a pricey purchase, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t have a top quality holiday in one of these sought after locations.

Check out our most glamorous places to stay blog: