Where to go on a wild and windy day

What weather! But today we were determined to go for a beach walk. And of course we needed to treat ourselves afterwards. At this time of year I love Salcombe’s South Sands – apart from three hardy swimmers we had the beach to ourselves then coffee and cake at the Winking Prawn. Such a great place and very welcoming. Highly recommended – no worries if you are in welles or wetsuits, all welcome.

A perfect Monday

Waking up to sunshine was a lovely surprise this morning, so off we went to Bigbury beach. Low tide so easy to walk to Burgh Island. And breakfast at Venus Cafe is always good. I had a very tasty breakfast bap overlooking the beach. I love this beach, especially in the winter when it is quiet and spacious and dogs allowed. And appreciate the cafe’s sustainability philosophy .

Time for tea and cake

There are some days when tea and cake is just simply the right thing to do. And today is the day. It is wet, wild and windy and really not the day for even a bracing walk. Seabreeze at Slapton is wonderful – good cakes and very friendly. At this time of year not too busy too. I would recommend it.

A real gem

Autumn is the time for those bracing coastal walks. Dogs in tow. One of my favourite spots is along the coastal path from Soar Mill Cove. At the weekend we visited the Walker’s Hut at East Soar Farm – a wonderful spot. Not a beach cafe but definitely worth the detour along the cliff to visit. Home made cakes and scones – you make your own tea and coffee and an honesty box system. My carrot cake was delicious and a generous portion!

Away for a while

The beach blog is away for a week or so – off on hols. Tilos to be exact – my most favourite Greek island. Of course there is still food with a view there too. Will be back blogging in South Devon shortly with renewed vigour for the upcoming late summer/autumn cafe visits.

Lifeguards, Bantham

September Surfing

I love September surfing – the water has warmed up over the summer and the beaches are a lot quieter. Despite the lacklustre surf at Bantham today, it was invigorating. Then we blew all the good work and had a delicious cream tea at Gastrobus afterwards! But remember, some beaches do not have lifeguards from 1 September. In South Devon these are Teignmouth, Hope Cove, Blackpool Sands, Slapton Sands, Thurlestone and Bigbury on Sea, North. For a complete list click here

Coffee time

Recently a friend commented that a local beach cafe was good, but the coffee was not the best. For him, a good coffee was important. This led me to muse which cafe I would choose to visit for a rich and tasty coffee. On reflection, the Lime Coffee Co at the Strete Gate end of Slapton Sands must be one of the stand outs. Using specially blended coffee by the Italian Food Heroes in Totnes, coffee is something they take very seriously – even perhaps too seriously they comment! Why not try it for yourself.

Good beach, good food what more do you need?

New to Thurlestone this summer is The Pod. Part of the Gastrobus family, it offers a range of freshly made ‘grab and go’ food for the beach – salad boxes, focaccia sandwiches and excellent coffee. Definitely worth trying.

Still a fine beach

Maidencombe Beach, English Riviera, Devon

Whilst at Paignton today, we decided to go for a walk further along the coastline and pop down to the Beach Box cafe at Maidencombe beach only to discover the cafe closed permanently. But don’t despair, this cove is still a hidden gem and one where you can swim and enjoy the wildlife – maybe spot a seal or dolphin. A great place to potter and paddle.

More than a beach hut

Beesands Beach, South Hams, South Devon, Devon

It was lovely to return to Britannia @ the Beach at Beesands this week after months of refurbishment. It was a beautiful day and the view over the bay was spectacular. We were lucky to get a table – they do get booked up, even for breakfast, so booking recommended. The new building has taken its design from beach huts and it works well – yet still retains its rustic charm and friendly approach. The local scallops are truly worth having – we shared a fisherman’s breakfast. Getting there is down the usual narrow South Devon lanes or the coastal walk from Torcross is well worth it.

A definite favourite

I love visiting cafes that have been recommended, but sometimes they just do not meet expectations. But Shoals on the Lido at Brixham, recommended by friends, lived up to their review and more. Sitting above the iconic art deco lido you get a fantastic view across Torbay and beyond. The cafe is family run, with a speciality of fresh local fish and it is not surprising you have to book for lunch and dinner during mid summer. We visited for breakfast and I ordered scallops and bacon in a brioche bun – totally delicious. I would definitely recommend this place and will be back – with my bathing costume next time. 

Dogs allowed all year

For many of us there is nothing better than enjoying the sea and the sand with our dogs – well behaved of course.

>>>Take a look at which beaches you can enjoy all year with your canine friends AND get a bite to eat as well.

Drizzle, mizzle and more 

The Winking Prawn, North Sands, Salcombe

This is not what we have come to expect in June. But why not take a walk at North Sands – just round the corner from Salcombe. It’s a lovely beach, especially at low tide when there is a great expanse of sand. And of course take in the Winking Prawn. Great family run cafe. My friend always has her birthday breakfast at the cafe  – their English buffet breakfast is well known – and I can understand why. They even provide dressing up clothes for children. Or just have a coffee and cake. Why not. 

Food for all

Cafe ODE

If you haven’t been to Cafe ODE do take a trip to Ness Cove at Shaldon. They have an all day menu served from 12 till 4.30 – with kid’s portions (half price, half size), plus a range of vegetarian and vegan and gluten free foods. Love their falafel wrap. Fish is from sustainable sources and vegetables are locally grown and organic. Well behaved dogs welcome. Sustainability is their mantra – plus wonderful food. Gets my vote. 

Cafe Ode, Shaldon

A hearty breakfast spot

Jennycliff cafe

Jennycliff Cafe, along the South West Coastal footpath, gives a wonderful view of Plymouth. Why not take a coastal walk and stop off for their well-known breakfast. Not a beautiful building but you will have a warm welcome and hearty meal. A walk from Jennycliff to Wembury is well worth it. At the moment Jennycliff Bay is closed due to path erosion.

Jennycliff cafe

A good walking day

Bolberry Down, Dick Makin

Spectacular weather for the long view – taken from Bolberry Down looking towards Hope Cove, South Milton Sands, Thurlestone, Bantham and beyond. Some good beach cafes to sample. One of my favourite places for a crab sandwich is the Beachhouse Cafe at South Milton Sands.

Get a takeaway and enjoy it on the beach overlooking Thurlestone rock. Nothing better. Dogs allowed on the beach too.

The Beachhouse Cafe, South Milton Sands

Food with a jolly good view

Lobster Pod, Hope Cove

Last week it was picnic on the beach and wall-to-wall sunshine. What a difference a week makes. If you want food with a view and some warmth and comfort, why not try the Lobster Pods at Hope Cove. Book your very own pod and enjoy fantastic views across the cove and out to Bigbury Bay. Not an extensive menu, but they specialise in locally caught fish and everything is freshly cooked and not a lot of batter. They also do a takeaway menu, pizzas and soups and chowders, and you can purchase uncooked fresh fish which is an added bonus. A lovely family run enterprise (part of the Cottage Hotel) and well worth a visit. 

Sunshine and solitude

Soar Mill Cove

Soar Mill Cove is one of those lovely hidden South Devon beaches. Had picnic on the almost deserted beach in the sunshine there today. Mack the dog enjoyed gambolling in the sea – altogether a very special place. Afterwards walked up the cliff path to Bolberry Down for welcome tea and apple cake at Oceans Restaurant. Here you get some wonderful views over to Hope Cove, Bantham and beyond.

 Ocean Reach Cafe, Bolberry Down

Surf and turf 

Gastrobus Burger

May is one of my most favourite months – full of vigour and optimism. The days are longer and warmer, and everything seems to be growing at a great pace. Launching Food with a View – Beach Cafes at their Best at this time of year seems the ideal time – just when we are planning a trip to the beach and need a jolly good cup of tea and piece of cake to go with it. I have just bought a new wetsuit so very eager to take it for its first outing this bank holiday weekend. I’m only a belly board surfer, but I love it. It invigorates me and makes me feel alive. In South Devon one of the best surf beaches must be Bantham – overlooking the iconic Burgh island. And after a bracing surf or walk along the beach the icing on the cake is Gastrobus. Try the Bantham burger – their speciality – totally scrumptious.  Have a great weekend.


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