The friendly seaside resort of Seaton, at the mouth of the River Axe, is a gateway town to the stunning World Heritage Jurassic Coastline, with its impressive cliffs, family friendly beaches, and opportunities to uncover a piece of earth’s ancient history with a fascinating fossil find.
Seaton’s mile-long stretch of pebble beach provides excellent water sports facilities such as fishing, sailing, swimming and windsurfing, as well as easy access to the South West Coast Path which links to Beer in the west, and Lyme Regis to the east, and offers abundant scenic views from the high cliffs.
The Seaton tramway runs seasonally, inland along the beautiful Axe estuary to Colyton and makes for a great day out for children, birdwatchers, and transport enthusiasts alike. Seaton Marshes Nature Reserve, with its newly installed viewing hide and wheelchair/pushchair-friendly paths, gives easy year-round access to this beautiful area, and the wildlife that has made its home here.
The town boasts many small independent and specialist shops, and high quality places to enjoy locally produced food and drink. It’s also less than a 20 drive to the picturesque market towns of Axminster and Honiton where you can get your retail therapy fix.
The Dorset coastal town of Lyme Regis is just a 15 minutes away by car, where you can spend the day learning about this unique stretch of coastline at the family-friendly Lyme Regis Museum, try your luck at fossil hunting, enjoy the beach, a stroll along the famous Cobb, or treat yourself to a meal at one of the many bars, cafés and restaurants that line the seafront promenade.
A holiday cottage in Seaton makes for the perfect base from which to enjoy a traditional seaside holiday in beautiful Devon and explore the magnificent Jurassic coastline stretching into neighbouring Dorset.
Not perhaps what you might expect to find in Cornwall, The Monkey Sanctuary is a delightful opportunity to learn about its 36 inhabitants, all of whom have distinct characters and personalities. An active rescue centre dealing with individuals that have often not had a very happy start to life, the priority is always their wellbeing, but it’s also an opportunity for guests to meet them and learn about the organization, explore the gardens and cultivated meadows, shop or relax in the café. There’s also a play area for children, with views of the Cornish coast. The sanctuary is closed on Fridays, but otherwise open from March to September (dates vary from year to year, so keep an eye on the website). Prices start at £8.50 per adult and £5 for children, which entitles you to entry for a whole year.
Owned by the East Loose Town Trust, the Looe Museum is managed by a small community of volunteers, and gives a delightful insight into the history and character of the area. It’s an opportunity to develop your knowledge of the town and locality whether you’re a first time visitor or frequent tourist. They frequently house new exhibitions and take part in local events, acting as a supportive part of the community. In 2016 they celebrated the 150th anniversary of the lifeboats in Looe for example, by loaning some of its objects to the RNLI for a dedicated exhibition. Admission is £2 for adults, £1 for children, and £4.50 for families.
Linking the bustling market town of Liskeard and the picturesque fishing port of Looe, the Looe Valley Railway Line takes you on a journey through an abundance of landscapes from heavily wooded valleys teaming with wildlife to glorious estuary views as the river meets the sea. See the river full of wading birds such as Litte egrets, Grey herons, Oystercatchers and Curlews, before stopping in Looe to explore the beaches, restaurants, shops and pubs. Take a peek at their online journey planner for prices and timetables. Dogs go free (up to two dogs per person).
Traditional seaside cafe on Seaton beach, serving breakfasts, lunches, snacks and cakes. Outdoor seating for when the sun is shining, and indoor seating, including a dog-friendly conservatory, for when the weather is not so kind.
Seaton Beach Cafe, Looe Hill, Seaton PL11 3JQ (T: 01503 250621)
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Lovely setting beside the beach and the river only had an ice cream which was delicious nice friendly staff .
Traditional Cornish village inn perched on a cliff top, with stunning views of Downderry beach and the ocean beyond.
Local cask ales and excellent locally sourced food with an extensive menu, serving breakfasts, light snacks, cream teas, à la carte meals and carveries in the bar, restaurant, conservatory, or outside decked area. There's also an enclosed lawned garden and children's play area to keep the little people happy.
Inn on the Shore, Downderry, Torpoint, Cornwall PL11 3JY (T: 01503 250027)
A spacious, grey sand beach that’s popular with families, Seaton Beach enjoys views across the green, surrounding countryside and walks in Seaton Valley nearby. At low tide the beach stretches all the way from Seaton Beach to Downderry Beach. There are facilities close by and there is are two car parks as well as road parking, but it does get busy quickly in the summer. The beach is great for surfing, but do be wary of undercurrents. There’s also a café and beach shop close by as well. Dogs are welcome at the beach all year round.
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Visited Seaton Beach several times during our stay fantastic dog friendly beach with the advantage of having the river as well my dog enjoyed swimming in the sea and the river thoroughly recommend this beach.
Millendreath Beach is a south facing beach at the foot of a wooded valley, in a sheltered cove with soft sand and lots of rock pools to explore at low tide. It’s connected to other nearby beaches by the South West Coast Path. Dogs aren’t allowed on this beach at any time of the year, and there is a reasonably sized car park a few minutes walk away. The beach is popular with families on holiday in Cornwall, and most of the surrounding area is occupied by a holiday park, so there are lot of facilities open to the public.
A small and pleasant grey sand beach with rocks exposed at low tide, Plaidy Beach is simply a nice place to visit and take in the scenery. There aren’t any facilities, and there’s no parking nearby so it’s one to reach on foot. There’s a slipway to the beach, but you will have to access it by walking along the coast path, parking at Millendreath or Looe and it’s worth keeping in mind that it’s quite steep from both directions. Millendreath is closer and the walk should take around 20 minutes. Dogs are allowed on the beach all year round, so it’s a charming place to take them for a walk while you’re in the area.
Half a mile west of Looe, stretching along the coast, Hannafore Beach is a sandy, shingle bay with a rocky reef and views of St George’s Island. At low tide it’s brimming with rock pools, making it fun and games for the whole family to enjoy, and it’s a wonderful sun trap in summer months thanks to its south east facing position. Because of its location over the river, the beach never really becomes too busy, but equally there aren’t any facilities nearby. It’s popular with dog walkers as it’s amongst the few dog-friendly beaches in the area, and having explored you can extend your excursion to a stroll along the promenade or a potter around the coast path to the wonderfully scenic Talland Bay. There is roadside parking along the sea front above the beach, but it can be difficult to find a space. Alternatively, there is a large car park in West Looe, around 10 minutes away on foot.
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One of the many dog friendly beaches we visited lovely coastal walks to Talland Bay the nature reserve island is very interesting great refreshments available and not forgetting the free parking available all day which is very useful.
In East Looe, the beach sits directly in front of the old town, sheltered by the Banjo Pier and overlooked from the east by the hillside of Mount Ararat. A good family beach that has something for everyone, at low tide the sandy location is safe for swimming although it’s recommended you steer clear of the river mouth beyond the pier. The beach backs on to a seafront walkway which runs its length all the way to Second Beach to the east, where it tends to be less busy and it’s good for snorkeling. As it’s in the centre of the town there are lots of facilities and cafes nearby, but in the summer it’s a very popular spot and parking can be tricky, with traffic prohibited during these months, so be prepared for a bit of a walk.