Thurlestone

all you need to know

Thurlestone is a picturesque seaside village set in the heart of South Devon, with golden beaches, coastal walks and breath-taking views all within a few minutes' walk.

About Thurlestone

Thurlestone is a popular, picturesque seaside village set in the heart of South Devon. Renowned for having a unique microclimate due to its sheltered position, and enjoying better weather than most of its neighbours, the village takes its name from the large offshore Thurlestone Rock (meaning pierced rock) that makes this a distinctive stretch of coastline so distinctive.

With the South West Coast Path on its doorstep, Thurlestone has great access to many of the sandy beaches and quiet coves that the region is well known for. Both the famous surf beach at Bantham and the family-friendly Hope Cove are close by, and some of the area’s most breathtaking views can be taken in on the short walk to either village.

For a village of its relatively small size, Thurlestone is fantastically well equipped, with a good pub, village shop and Post Office, 5* hotel with leisure facilities, two golf courses, tennis club and access to four beautiful sandy beaches. The famous 18 hole Thurlestone Golf Course is a must for keen golfers who will appreciate it's magnificent cliff top position that offers far reaching sea views and fabulous sunsets.

Thurlestone is just a 10 minute drive from the pretty market town of Kingsbridge, with its good range of independent shops, delis, cafés, pubs and restaurants, as well as two supermarkets and a small cinema.

Whilst the sailing mecca of Salcombe, with its stunning harbour, and excellent shopping and dining, is just 15 minutes' drive away. Here, there are ample opportunities to get on the water either in a dinghy or on a motor boat, or by simply taking the passenger ferry across turquoise waters to access yet more gorgeous, sandy beaches at  East Portlemouth.

The exquisite tropical gardens at Overbecks National Trust, perched on the cliffs just outside Salcombe, offer jaw-dropping views back towards the town and along the coast and out to sea.

A holiday cottage in Thurlestone offers a beautiful coastal retreat with the very best parts of the South Hams right on your doorstep.

 

 

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Thurlestone Golf Club

Thurlestone Golf Club
(Less than a mile)

On the coast with spectacular views of the sea, Thurlestone Golf Club can be seen from the beach and is fortunate enough to be on a beautiful section of the South West Coast Path. The 18-hole course is a mix of links and cliff top terrain and aims to cater to all ages and abilities with a variety of tees. All visitors are welcome and will be pleased to know that there are two bars on site as well as a separate dining room. Green fees vary according to the season but start at £36 per person in the low season. As with most golf courses, there is a dress code so golf shoes must be worn and denim isn’t allowed, but a full list or restrictions are listed on their main website.

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Bantham Surfing Academy

Bantham Surfing Academy
(Less than a mile)

Operating from the car park at postcard perfect surfer’s paradise Bantham Beach, Bantham Surfing Academy is run by experienced SurfingGB qualified instructors who offer tuition and coaching for all levels, including beginners, as well as supervised surfing sessions and a Kids Club. In addition to surfing lessons, the team offer Stand Up Paddle Boarding lessons, hire and tours around Burgh Island and the River Avon, and lifeguard and surf instructor tuition and qualifications. Prices start at £35 for a two-hour beginner lesson and equipment is available but remember to bring a towel, a swimming costume, and change for the car park which has charges in operation through the peak seasons.

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(1)

My granddaughter had expert tuition and was so thrilled to be able to stand on her board. She was well looked after (5yrs)

August 2017



Bigbury Golf Club

Bigbury Golf Club
(2 miles)

A friendly cliff top golf course close to Kingsbridge, Bigbury Golf Club is a links course with spectacular views of the South Devon coast. It is an 18-hole course where you can play as an individual or as part of a group. It’s 6,035 yards for men, 5,544 for ladies and par is 70 and 73 respectively. There’s a clubhouse with a restaurant and bar, but remember that dress should be smart/casual at all times, and in the clubhouse they ask that you don’t wear golf shoes, hats, untailored shorts, general beach wear, collarless tee shirts and non-golf sportswear like tracksuits and rugby shirts. The club offers rates for groups of 6-14 and society golf days for numbers over 14. Green fees are seasonal and depend on the time of day that you’re visiting so keep an eye on the website for full details.

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(2)

Friendly and a lovely course, with great views. Tricky in any wind!

May 2017


Good course to play. Very hilly on the front 9. Don't forget the VIP card for the discount. You can book tee times on their website. Take plenty of balls if it's windy. ????

June 2017



Bigbury Discovery Surf School

Discovery Surf School at Bigbury-on-Sea
(2 miles)

Based at Bigbury-on-Sea and Challaborough Bay, Discovery Surf is a fun, friendly and professional environment where the team always have a smile and a word of encouragement to go with their expert tuition. Providing the opportunity to quite literally interact with South Devon’s primary asset - the environment - they offer lessons, courses and equipment hire, as well as Stand Up Paddleboarding and Kayaking. Prices start at £20 an hour, just make sure you take a towel and swimming cossies with you and arrive 20 minutes before your lesson.

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(2)

Had a great lesson with Discovery Surf. Two hours on the Sedgewell side of Bigbury Beach. All equipment provided, the guys really knew their stuff and we were on our feet in no time. Such a buzz, definitely recommend trying it out if you've not surfed before or want to build up your confidence in the sea.

December 2016


Excellent lesson in tough conditions on a windy down a Bigbury, really clear instruction, great place to srat and get in to surfing

December 2016



Salcombe Shooting School

Salcombe Shooting School
(3 miles)

Founded 20 years ago by Royal Marine Chris, and set in a valley in Bolberry, Salcombe Shooting School makes for the perfect location to simulate game shooting. They provide a variety of targets and a wonderful training ground for those wanting to hone their clay shooting skills. A fun and safe experience for all ages and levels, the school provides all safety equipment and offers individual lessons from £50 for an hour or two sharing for £80 for 90 minutes. They also offer air rifle sessions and cater for shooting parties which can be a wonderful way to spend birthdays, hen parties and stag dos in the South West. 

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The Village Inn
(Less than a mile)

A popular 16th century inn complete with beams salvaged from Spanish Armada ships wrecked nearby and today enjoying stylish modern décor and a relaxed, friendly atmosphere .  Plenty of comfortable seating areas inside and out, along with a menu offering freshly prepared meals and daily specials.  Children and dogs welcome.

The Village Inn Thurlestone TQ7 3NN (T: 01548 563525)

 

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(11)

we've been coming to thurlestone for years and loved the new look pub this summer. The renovation is really nice and we had a great meal on our last night

December 2016


Lovely pub, good food.

January 2017


Great pub, gets busy so I'd advise booking a table if you want to eat and their Sunday lunches are great.

May 2017


Visited twice, lovely meals both times, friendly staff and good that we could take our dog with us.

May 2017


Excellent service provided by happy efficient staff. The food was super

May 2017


This was a very dissappointing experience the staff require some good professional training and food is poor quality.

June 2017


Quintessential pub! As a 3-generational family on holiday, we had a lot of fun here each evening. The pub is fine for families (childrens menu etc), but there isn't any outside space suitable for families.

June 2017


Incredible pub. The food is outstanding with a newly earned rosette. The staff were really friendly and a great atmosphere. Would 100% recommend it for families and romantic couples!!

July 2017


A very nice meal at quite a reasonable price. Really helpful to be able to take the dog in.....!

July 2017


Food was good but service was rushed

July 2017


Great pub, excellent service and food, we will be back as soon as possible!

July 2017



The Trevilder Restaurant, Thurlestone Hotel
(Less than a mile)

A fine dining restaurant open daily to non-residents of the hotel for lunch and dinner, offering menu’s using the finest local produce accompanied by an extensive wine list.  Complementing the high quality cuisine are the breath taking views over Thurlestone Sands and out to sea. 

The Trevilder Thurlestone Hotel, Thurlestone TQ7 3NN

 

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The Sloop Inn
(Less than a mile)

This historic pub, full of period features in the pretty village of Bantham, is a great spot to enjoy well-cooked classic meals or a pint after a day spent on the beach or walking the South West Coast Path.   Menu’s change on a daily basis and children and dogs are welcome. 

The Sloop Inn , Bantham TQ7 3AJ (T: 01548 560489)

 

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(10)

Brilliant pub. Love the village so much and spent every night in here during our stay. Great pub food, dogs welcome and a cosy fire. Want to come back now please!!!

December 2016


A wonderful Sunday lunch - all it should be, in a relaxed and untarted-up - honest pub.

March 2017


First rate sandwiches, very good and friendly service.

April 2017


Back to the Sloop for burgers. Good portions, nicely presented. Great value. Always a good atmostphere and they are renovating the restaurant so should be even better.

April 2017


Obviously a decent 'local' with good beer, a reasonable menu (with a small choice for vegetarians) and obliging staff - once you can get to the bar past the rather loud, clustered regulars ... It was a shame that the only vegetarian starter was 'off' when we visited, but in retrospect we ate very well and would probably have regretted it anyway. The food we received was very good - no complaints at all.

April 2017


We have been going to the Sloop for many years and enjoyed the food. However, this year..on Easter Monday...having booked a table for 9 people at 6.30pm...we tried to order food and almost everything was sold out. This was extremely disappointing and rather spoilt our stay. We left and went to a nearby restaurant which wss very pleasant and had almost everything on the menu. We were told that the Sloop had been busier than usual and had been unable to get further supplies due to the holiday. This has been the same situation for the last 15 yrs we have been going there and we havent had this problem before. Very disappointing.

April 2017


Good menu and food though the pub is a bit tatty, however, they are doing a refurbishment in May so this might improve it.

May 2017


Lovely pub, the restaurant has been recently refurbished and has a lovely modern feel. Both the food and service were excellent.

June 2017


Lovely waitresses, good solid food, not so friendly bar staff

June 2017


The biggest fish and chips ever and lovely too really enjoyed our meal here

July 2017



The Beach House
(Less than a mile)

Fantastic beach café by day transforming into a romantic beach shack style seafood restaurant by night, and well worth a visit.  Booking is essential for the evenings when delicious seafood dishes are produced from a tiny kitchen.  A more limited menu as well as ice creams, coffees and snacks are available during the day. 

The Beach House South Milton, Kingsbridge TQ7 3JY (T: 01548 561144)

 

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(10)

Great place. Have visited in winter and summer and think I might even prefer it on a blustery winters day. The food is great and good right next to you, which does make it a little bit smelly but it's all part of the experience. The building is really unique and has an amazing location right by the beach. Summer gets a bit crazy and we found ourselves queuing a lot for the takeout food which was a bit over priced.

December 2016


All aboout the location. Lovekly fresh seafood :D

December 2016


Amazing food and great service.

December 2016


This is my favourite place to eat fish in England. Simple, delicious, friendly, atmospheric. A must.

March 2017


fantastic Supper and sunset view - what a wonderful find - will re-visit

April 2017


Very good but pricey and not the best service. No kids menu at breakfast, they expect children to have a £9 fry up which isn't great for our 6 and 8-year-old. We also asked for poached eggs rather than fried and they didn't do this.

May 2017


Wonderful location and great food, but the prices are expensive as you're paying for its premium site. Also very small inside area so you need to book if you want to sit undercover.

May 2017


Rather expensive during the day but captive audience as no other option in the area

July 2017


Excellent fish food/snacks served by happy helpful people and just next to a great beach. It can get very very busy.

July 2017


Great place to eat on a sunny day food is of high quality and the atmosphere is fab

July 2017



The Gastrobus
(Less than a mile)

A great mobile café selling high quality burgers, breakfast baps and other light meals, cakes, coffees and ice creams in an idyllic location next to Bantham Beach.   Open every day, weather permitting.

The Gastrobus, Bantham Beach, Bantham TQ7 3AN

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(5)

AMAZING burgers!!!

December 2016


Great coffee, great location, great food. Perfect!

December 2016


Great location, good food and definitely worth a visit

May 2017


Cream teas in a box to enjoy on the beach - awesome! Every beach should have one!

June 2017


Very friendly staff, lovely selection of delicious snacks

June 2017



South Milton Sands

South Milton Sands
(Less than a mile)

A long stretch of sand broken only by the South Milton Ley freshwater reed bed, South Milton Sands is a dramatic beach that’s exposed to the elements, making it something of a chameleon throughout the year. Rugged in its beauty, there’s nothing quite like watching the sun set at this beach behind an iconic rock archway in the water; it really is spectacular, particularly if you do so over dinner in the summer months from The Beach Café, a small but perfectly formed restaurant and café that’s perched just above the sand. If you want a table inside then you really do have to book this one, but if the weather is fine then eating outside is a joy. The beach is sandy and popular on windy days with kite surfers and windsurfers, but in calmer weather is perfect for a summer swim. Dogs are welcome at South Milton throughout the year, there’s a National Trust car park by the beach which costs from £5 for the day, £3 after 4pm or is free for National Trust members. There are also toilets nearby. It’s also worth knowing that in the summer months lifeguards are in situ from 6th July until 8th September, keeping everyone safe in the sun, sea and sand. When the weather is less conducive to sitting and admiring the view, South Milton is perfectly placed for a stroll along the coast path either towards Hope Cove and around towards Salcombe if you fancy making a day of it, or in the opposite direction you can walk towards Bantham and Bigbury on Sea. It’s a wonderful place to explore and watch Devon’s wildlife in all its glory.

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(4)

Fantastic sandy beach for everything, rock pools, building sandcastles body boarding.

April 2017


Beautiful.

May 2017


Fabulous dog friendly beach with amazing views

June 2017


A glorious beach! Dog friendly, sandy, rock pools at the far end. Parking handy, spectacular views - the stone arch beats Durdle Door in my mind..... Delightful. Loved it.

July 2017



Bigbury on Sea

Bigbury on Sea
(2 miles)

It won’t come as a surprise to anyone who has visited that Bigbury on Sea is located in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Perfect for sand castles and rock pooling as well as tucking into lengthy summer picnics, it is an unusual beach to visit because the tide comes in from both sides. As a result, it is an endless source of fascination for children, not least for its sea tractor which provides transport from one end of the beach to the other in order to reach Burgh Island. Burgh Island is connected to mainland England by the beach alone, it’s home to the famous art deco Burgh Island Hotel which has hosted Agatha Christie and Noel Coward since its incarnation in 1929, and has even made an appearance in the TV adaptation of Christie’s Poirot. On a practical note there is on-site parking available close to the beach with daily charges from £3.50. Toilets and shower facilities with disabled access are also nearby, and lifeguards are present from May to September. The Venus café offers teas, coffees and other refreshments including the ice creams that are of such fundamental importance for a day at the beach. Meanwhile, dog lovers will be pleased to know that four legged friends are welcome at Bigbury on Sea, but restrictions apply from 1st May until 30th September. Ultimately, Bigbury on Sea is a supremely beautiful location and fun family day out with abundant wildlife to enjoy and coastal footpaths to explore as well, making it a wonderful destination to visit on holiday in Devon, no matter what time of the year it is.

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(3)

Fantastic unique place with sea both sides of the beach when the tide is out and Burgh Island to walk to with a lovely old pub but inefficient service.

April 2017


Rather run down and disappointing that visitors are made to feel rather unwanted with only a small section of the pub open to non-residents and the hotel off limits completely to non-residents. View from the top lovely, but I wouldn't drive miles and miles to visit. What attracted me was the parting of the sea and that was a lovely view

June 2017


Lovely place. Child friendly with fantastic views. Only downside is the dogs that are allowed on. It can get very busy in high season and the dogs can be a pain if running loose especially if you have got little ones. We have got a dog so it's not because we aren't dog lovers!

July 2017



Hope Cove

Hope Cove
(2 miles)

Hope Cove is the perfect name for this inspiringly beautiful little corner of the South Hams. Divided into two areas, Inner Hope and Outer Hope, both linked by a footpath and road, and each with their own respective beaches, Outer Hope is also home to the Hope and Anchor Pub and a collection of shops and cafes, while Inner Hope is a quieter more residential area. At Outer Hope you will find Mouthwell Sands, a sandy cove scattered with pebbles and backed by rocky cliffs with a slipway and steps from the road down to the beach. It’s a popular spot with surfers, despite being a fairly small beach, and watching the sunset from here is a beautiful way to spend the evening. There is a car park by the beach where charges apply so make sure you have cash on you as you arrive, and dogs are permitted out of season with restrictions applying from 1st May until 30th September. Meanwhile, Harbour Beach is a short stroll away and bridges the two villages of Inner and Outer Hope. It is a wide sandy beach that’s perfect for rock pooling and sand castle building, and there is a harbour wall that makes for spectacular crashing waves in the winter as well as a tempting spot from which to jump into the water in the summer at high tide. Just make sure you don’t jump in when the water is low as it’s too shallow. Harbour Beach is also an ideal spot from which to paddle board or kayak across the bay, with the really intrepid amongst us pottering all the way along the coast to Thurlestone and Burgh Island. Finally, at Inner Hope itself there is a small sandy beach that’s accessible down a slipway. This is home to the old lifeboat station and is a quiet spot that marks a juncture along the coast path from Bolberry. Speaking of which, you can walk either way along the coast from Hope Cove, either towards South Milton Sands, Thurlestone and Bantham, or towards Salcombe. If you are making a day of it then why not start at the Winking Prawn at North Sands and stop at Hope Cove for lunch?

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(10)

Absolutely love this place! Perfect for families, safe swimming and and lots of rock pools to explore. Our kids were down there every day. Can't wait to come back next year. Mrs Sutton

December 2016


Beautiful coves and pretty cottages

April 2017


A really pretty place with all you need fir a relaxing holiday, beautiful views and lovely coast walks

April 2017


Lovely and well worth a visit.

May 2017


Friendly , beautiful - everything you could want in a holiday spot - didn't matter what the weather was like ,plenty to do and see .

May 2017


A beautiful coastal village with two sandy beaches. The village centre has some pretty thatched cottages and there is a good choice of places to eat most with sea views. We ate most nights at the Hope and Anchor and they are dog friendly. We enjoyed walking along the coastal paths with fine views from both sides of the village. Hope Cove is a good base to explore South Devon with Salcombe, Kingsbridge and Totnes within easy reach.

May 2017


Breathtaking views, very quiet village, very peaceful.

June 2017


Fantastic place

July 2017


A really nice walk over the hill tops from Thurlestone, Hope Cove is pretty but a bit busier than other places we visited. Lovely views.

July 2017


Lovely location, beautiful beaches and some great places to eat!

August 2017



Bantham Beach

Bantham Beach
(3 miles)

At the mouth of the Avon River, Bantham beach is easy to reach from Salcombe, Kingsbridge and our other favourite holiday home locations, as well as being a beautiful area to stay in its own right. The beach looks out over Bigbury Bay and offers a wonderful view of Burgh Island, which is famous for its art deco hotel of the same name that has hosted Agatha Christie and Noel Coward amongst its illustrious guests an can reach by sea tractor. Bantham beach has a popular reputation amongst both novice and advanced surfers, and as such there are lessons available from the Bantham Surfing Academy, which operates from the beach. They also offer other water sports including paddle boarding, and a day pottering up the Avon River on one of those when the tide is right, is a day well spent. When the tide is out at Bantham the sandy beach reveals rock pools and great swathes of space so you can happily set up a picnic and stay there for the whole day. If the mood strikes, why not walk along the coast path towards Thurlestone around the corner, and South Milton Sands beyond that, particularly as it’s also a popular beach for dog owners? Just keep in mind that from 1st May until 30th September restrictions apply, so look out for signposts with more information. If you’re spending the whole day on the beach it’s worth popping to the Gastrobus which is open seasonally in the car park, offering everything from freshly made baps to coffees, teas and cakes, or for a larger meal head the short walking distance to The Sloop Inn gastropub. There is plenty of parking available by Bantham, with charges from £3.50 per day, so make sure you have change on you as it’s a bit tricky to find parking otherwise. There are toilets in the car park, and from May to October from 10am until 6pm there is also lifeguard cover on the beach. All in, Bantham has something to offer everyone throughout the year and is one of many beautiful locations to spend time while you’re in South Devon.

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(3)

Fantastic sandy beach and so big. My dog loved running around and jumping into the water. Plenty of space for all.

April 2017


A short walk (less than a mile) from Thurlestone, this is a stunning beach. Lots of shallow water with sand underfoot, truly amazing.

July 2017


Beautiful beach. Nightmare of a road (especially in high season) to get to it. Worth it though when you get there.

July 2017



Challaborough Bay

Challaborough Bay
(3 miles)

Close to Kingsbridge, Challaborough Bay is a sandy beach in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty that’s perfect for enjoying all the seaside activities nature can afford. At low tide the beach is ideal for visiting families to build sandcastles and explore the rock pools, while the swells and shore breaks also attract surfers and bodyboarders. There are some beautiful walks along the coast path that surrounds it, heading towards Bigbury on Sea in particular. Making it an ideal spot to spend the day, the beach has toilets, a café and a beach shop close by, although access is via steps and small paths so accessibility isn’t wheelchair friendly. There is a car park but it’s rather small, so it’s good to know that a 15-minute walk to Bigbury will see ample parking available – seasonal charges apply so remember to bring cash with you. While four legged friends are welcome in the winter, they are not allowed on the beach between May and September, so do plan their walks with that in mind. It’s a lovely spot along the coast path to bring them to, you can even beach hop from one to the next!

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(1)

Lovely beach

April 2017


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