South Hams Coast & Countryside

Our lodges are perfectly located to access some of the finest coast and countryside in the country.  We’re in the middle of the South Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and close to over 80 miles of designated Heritage Coast.

Coast & Beaches

South Devon has 49 miles of stunning designated heritage coast stretching between Wembury beach and Sharkham point – perfect for exploring.

Our closest beaches, Blackpool Sands and Slapton Sands, are only ten minutes away. Both  have good facilities and swimming areas, launching for kayaks, café and toilets.

More rugged and remote are Mattiscombe and Lannacombe beyond Start lighthouse.  Both are a twenty minute drive and have fantastic walks around them as well as sandy coves.

Just a little further are the breathtaking sandy beaches at Salcombe.

For surfing, kite surfing and walking head to Bantham or Bigbury- on- Sea, which overlook famous Burgh Island. Surf lessons are available here.

South Hams Countryside


Our lodges are located in the heart of the South Hams in a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

This area is characterised by its peaceful countryside, pretty villages, rolling hills, colourful hedge banks, green lanes, orchards and wooded valleys.

We are situated right next to the river Gara, a river of some seven miles that rises on Halwell Ridge and flows to nearby Slapton Ley.  Slapton Ley itself is the largest freshwater lake in the South West of England and a National Nature Reserve – home to many native and visiting birds and other wildlife.

The best way to experience this lovely area is on foot.  For some great ideas for walks visit the South Devon AONB website.


The South Hams itself boasts the rivers Yealm, Erme, Avon and Dart.  All of these rivers originate on Dartmoor and flow down to the sea passing lovely towns and villages such as Totnes, Dartmouth, Noss Mayo, Dittisham and Bantham.

There is also the Salcombe-Kingsbridge estuary which is actually a ria or flooded valley.

And also within easy reach are the Teign, the Plym and the Tamar.



The South Hams features a number of different and important wildlife habitats.  These range from salt marshes, ancient woodlands and reedbeds to eelgrass and coastal grasslands.

Throughout the year you can experience some unique wildlife events including the murmurations of huge clouds of starlings in the autumn and winter, large shoals of mackerel churning the water in the summer, basking sharks and possibly (although rarely) a whale!

For more information on the unique habitst and wildlife of the area visit the South Devon AONB website.


Dartmoor is the largest and wildest area of open country in Southern England.

With over 450 miles of public rights of way, there is an abundance of walking routes. Dartmoor also boasts a variety of cycle routes, both on and off road, making it as challenging as you want it.

And there is also horse- riding, climbing, letterboxing, geo- caching or kayaking.

To get the most from your visit to Dartmoor visit the Dartmoor National Park website.

Coastal Lodges at Gara Mill
Gara Mill
South Hams
South Devon

T: 01803 771 046


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