In the deep south west.
This page describes the South West Coast Path and stages undertaken to date. The path is well described elsewhere (see references below).
This path terminates in the north at Minehead and in the south at the Sandbanks ferry. A logical continuation of the path eastwards from here is the South Coast Path - east of Sandbanks.
2013: Sidmouth, Devon. - the Devon-Dorset Jurassic Coast has some spectacular scenery.
Description of the path
The South West Coast Path is probably as well known as the Pennine Way and is well documented in the links below. It covers over 1000 km around the coasts of Devon, Cornwall, Dorest and Somerset.
It is also a physical geological textbook with a spectrum of rock types that result in some spectacular and outstanding scenery especially in the World heritage Site ie the Jurassic Coast.
One of the benefits of coast paths is the the walker reaches locations that few holiday makers will ever get to and some of these places are very special indeed.
We cover a stage at least once a month and walking the coast all year round one is a witness to the seasons along the coast as well as in the resorts. Migrations happen in both domains: the contrast of high summer with mid-winter can be hard to believe at times.
The main places clockwise from Sandbanks ferry are: Swanage, Lulworth Cove, Weymouth, Lyme Regis, Seaton, Sidmouth, Budleigh Salterton, Exmouth, Dalwish, Teignmouth, Torquay, Paignton, Brixham, Dartmouth, Plymouth, Loue, Polperro, Fowey, Charlestown, Mevagisse, Gorran Haven, St Mawes, Falmouth, Helford Estuary, Porthhoustock, Coverack, The Lizard, Porthleven, Marazion, Penzance, Newlyn, Mousehole, Lands End, Sennen Cove, St Ives, Hayle, Portreath, Porthtowan, Perranporth, Newquay, Padstow, Port Isaac, Tintagel, Bude, Hartland Point, Westward Ho!, Bideford, Barnstaple, Ilfracombe, Lynton and Minehead.
From Hampshire we have completed all the stages that can be dine in a day and are now walking these in the opposite direction. Those deeper into the peninsula require longer trips.
South West Coast Path Stats
|Total Distance [km]||1,014 [see note below]|
|Lowest point||beaches||2 m [amsl]|
|Highest point||Great Hangman, Combe Martin||318 m [amsl]|
- The "official distance" is not a final statement and will always be an underestimate.
- There are several recent extentsuions to the path eg the Royal William Yard at Plymouth.
- GPS distances often reveal distances 10% longer than the guidebook states.
- There will always be diversion due to our crymbling coastline - these invariably add distance
2. Stages Completed
The stages below are stages completed to date and follow a clockwise order along the coast from Sandbanks. The distance is taken from the gps track data.
|Swanage-Chapman's Pool||15.5 km||coast-moderate|
|Chapman's Pool-Lulworth Cove||19.3km||coast-hilly|
|Lulworth Cove-Weymouth-||18.4 km||coast-hilly|
|Abbotsbury-West Bay||14.9 km||coast-moderate|
|West Bay-Lyme Regis||17.5 km||coast-hilly|
|Lyme Regis-Seaton||13.0 km||coast-moderate|
|Dawlish Warren-Teignmouth||8.3 km||coast-moderate|
|Mothecombe-Warren Point [Wembury]||14.4 km||coast-moderate|
|Warren Point [Wembury]-Plymouth [Mount Batten]||12.1 km||coast-moderate|
|Plymouth: Mount Batten-Plymouth [Cremyll Ferry]||14.1 km||coast-flat|
|Plymouth [Cremyll Ferry]-Tregantle Fort||18.7 km||coast-moderate|
|Tregantle Fort-Looe||16.4 km||coast-hilly|
|St Mawes-Falmouth||4.8 km||coast-flat|
|Falmouth-Rosemullion Point||7.7 km||coast-flat|
|Zennor - St Ives||9.8 km||coast-hilly|
|St Ives-Mexico Towans||14.8 km||coast-moderate|
|Perranporth-Newquay [Gannel]||17.1 km||coast-flat|
|Newquay [Harbour Ent]-Porthcothan||18.3km||coast-moderate|
|Westward Ho!-Instow||20.2 km||coast-flat|
|Ilfracombe-Combe Martin||9.6 km||coast-hilly|
Stages in Dorset and east Devon are also being walked a second time - on this occasion in the opposite direction.
Some of the shorter stages around Weymouth have been consolidated.
3. Percent and total distance walked to date
|57% completed||HM&KM||580 km||2009 - 2017||several stages east of Brixham have been completed in both directions|
Points of Interest
Getting there - access
From Hampshire stages east of Brixham are all generally determined by public transport access. This part of the path is well served by rail - with stations in most cases being within a 20 minute walk to the coast or a short bus ride. This makes it very easy to get off at one station, walk the coast and get on to return down the line.
Elsewhere the current plan is to stay somewhere local to a stage and use a bus or rail for the return trip.
Each stage above includes a section regarding access to start/end points. In most cases this will be based on experience and where possible using public transport.
Start: 05 June 2016
References & Links:
|20140608||South West Coast Path [National Trail Site]|
|20140608||South West Coast Path [Wikipedia]|
|20140608||South West Coast Path Association|
KJM 02 Sep 2017