We know many of you are wanting to escape the everyday and take that trip you’ve been dreaming of recently. So, we spoke to some of our favourite North Devon residents and asked them for their top three tips to help you live like a local, find some hidden gems and escape the everyday in and around Croyde and North Devon.
Get off the beaten path and experience some quieter coves and indulgent eats with Sarah of The Gluten Free Blogger.
SEA VIEWS + DELICIOUS FOOD
If you want to enjoy a sea view and some delicious food, then head to some of North Devon’s beach cafes. Barricane Beach is nestled around the corner from Woolacombe, with a cafe serving incredible curries during the summer months. Instow houses The Glorious Oyster, where you can try some of the region’s fresh seafood, and Watermouth Cove (near Ilfracombe) has the unique Storm in a Teacup Boat Cafe where you can enjoy a lovely cuppa.
If you want to avoid the main beaches, pack a bag and head along the South West Coast Path to discover some of the region’s quieter coves. Broadsands beach is a hidden gem nestled between Ilfracombe and Combe Martin, Woody Bay (out towards Exmoor) has a fantastic natural sea pool and there are some beautiful quieter coves nestled between Woolacombe and Mortehoe.
NORTH DEVON MARKETS
North Devon’s markets are a great place to find local produce. Pick up fresh fruit and veg pulled from the soil down the road, or enjoy pastries, jams, cheeses, cakes, ales, cider and more crafted by artisan producers. Look out for street food markets and food festivals where you can often find all sorts of local treats to take home as a souvenir. They’re also an excellent place to source gluten free or vegan treats if you have dietary requirements.
Immerse yourself in the coastal wonders of North Devon with Lauren from All Things Devon.
While North Devon boasts beautiful locations aplenty, if you’re looking to escape the crowds, then these three beauty spots will tick both boxes.
If you’re staying in Croyde, but want to give the beach a miss during peak times, then the National Trust route to Baggy Point will be just what you’re looking for. Take in the spectacular coastline as you approach the headland, where you can glance back at the golden sands of the bay, while also looking out to Lundy on the horizon.
FEEL LIKE YOU’RE IN THE MEDITERREAN
Admittedly not quite as secret as it once was, Broadsands Beach provides Mediterranean vibes that you won’t believe can be found in the UK. The 220 steps put many off adventuring down to the shore but I promise that you will reap the rewards when you reach the bottom. The perfect place for a delightful dip in crystal clear waters.
STUNNING HARBOURS & SECRET COVES
The little harbour of Watermouth is stunning in its own right, but just a short walk further on the coast path will bring you to an abandoned lookout tower, which presents the ideal opportunity to take an Instaworthy shot for the ‘gram’! The more daring can explore the overgrown cliff tops to uncover a secret cove looking towards nearby Combe Martin.
Experience the beauty of the outdoors and squeeze in a few treats for yourself on the way with Kat’s South West.
SHELL HUNTING & SRI LANKAN CURRY
Shell hunting at Barricane Beach. Extra points for a cowrie shell 🐚 although not open at the moment and that I’ve yet to go, Sri Lanka curry on the beach is still up there as a go to!!
WATERFALLS HIKES & REWARD YOURSELF WITH CAKE
Spekes Mill Mouth Waterfall! A hidden gem, walking along the SW Coastal Path through Hartland and followed by a big slice of cake at Tea on the Green in Westward Ho!
UNESCO WORLD BIOSPHERE & A SOUTH WEST FAVOURITE
Braunton Burrows, often overlooked but a great spot for shelter and exploring! Giving you a different perspective on the wonderful Saunton sands. Why not grab a pasty from the cafe and have a good stroll within the Sand Dunes! 😊
Visit independent local food businesses and adventure around North Devon like Sam and Louisa from Our Food Truck Journey.
SUNSETS & SUPPER
Barricane beach cafe – every summer a crane lifts an old shipping container onto the stunning Barricane Beach for the season. From there the most delicious curries are sold for you to enjoy whilst watching the sun set over the sea 🌅
VISIT LOCAL BARS
Ayka rum bar – if you want a buzzing bar with crazy cocktails and an incredible selection of rums then pop to Braunton for a great night out. Super stylish + lively atmosphere. Their Thursday quiz night is not to be missed!🍹
SECRET BEACHES & STAND UP PADDLE BOARDING
Broadsands beach – hire sups or kayaks from neighbouring Combe Martin or Watermouth and get to this secret beach. It’s only accessible by 200 odd steps or by water so amazingly picturesque + undiscovered. A little slice of paradise 🌊
ESCAPE THE EVERYDAY AT CROYDE BAY RESORT
Whether you want to pick one, all or mix and match the experiences recommended by our lovely locals, we know it’ll be the perfect way for you to escape the everyday and plan your UK break to Croyde and North Devon.
If you’re looking for a double hotel room all the way up to a 4 bedroom luxury lodge, we have just the place for your getaway! See our rooms here.