A circular walk from Little Dartmouth

Walking trail

A beautiful four-mile circular coastal walk with far-reaching views across the sea and towards Dartmouth. A great walk to see birds, grasshoppers, crickets and butterflies.

Follow the boats along the coast to the safe harbour of Dartmouth

This moderate graded walk joins the coast path and includes some impressive sea and estuary views. Extend your trip with a visit to the Dartmouth Castle tea-rooms (not NT). For many the highlight of the walk is the ruins of Gallants Bower, an old Civil War fort with impressive 360 degree views.

There is a wonderful circular walk around Little Dartmouth


Map route for Dartmouth - Little Dartmouth circular 4 mile walk


National Trust Little Dartmouth car park, grid ref: SX874491


Follow the path at the southern end of the car park towards the sea, joining the coast path at Warren Point. The Point gets its name from the large burrows where rabbits were bred for meat and fur in the 19th century (long gone now). From the Point there are far-reaching views south across Start Bay to Start Point Lighthouse 8 miles (13km) away.


Follow the coast path eastwards passing Western Combe Cove (don't be tempted by the steep unstable steps carved into the cliff face). Walk past the gorse-covered outcrop of Combe Point and the rocky inlets of Shinglehill Cove and Willow Cove. (You'll pass an inland path which offers a short cut back to the car park.)

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The coast path eventually loops around Compass Valley. At the finger post follow the sign to continue on the coast path, across the field and then through the gate towards Dartmouth. At this finger post you could alternatively head seaward to visit a view point or detour down to Compass Cove before retracing your steps to re-join the coast path (please be aware that there is no access to Compass Cove until further notice due to landslips).

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Continue along the coast path and onto Blackstone Point. Follow the path as it climbs steeply through woods above Deadman's Cove and Sugary Cove, until you reach the lane at Compass cottage (if you turn left here you can bypass Gallants Bower and return to the car park). On the estuary below stands Dartmouth Castle (English Heritage) with refreshments and toilets.

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Turn right, going downhill along the lane. After a short distance on the left take the path up into Gallants Bower (Dartmouth Castle is now below you). Follow the path up through the woods. Through the gate into the open area - the site of the fortification. Take the path westwards staying below the fort. Then back through a gate and down through the woods and on to the lane. Bear right heading up hill, passing the old Coastguard Station and continue along the bridleway back to Little Dartmouth car park.

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National Trust Little Dartmouth car park, grid ref: SX874491

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A circular walk from Little Dartmouth


Some short steep climbs.

Dogs welcome under close control.

A circular walk from Little Dartmouth

Contact us

A circular walk from Little Dartmouth

How to get here

Stoke Fleming, Dartmouth, Devon, TQ6 0JP
By road

From Dartmouth, take B3205 to Stoke Fleming and follow signs at crossroads to Little Dartmouth Farm.

Parking: Little Dartmouth car park (SX874492), £2 per day.

A circular walk from Little Dartmouth

Facilities and access

  • Dogs welcome under control
  • District Council toilets
  • Refreshments (in season) at Dartmouth Castle (English Heritage)