Shaldon a charming and so picturesque village, tuned to the rise and fall of the tides. Alive to the sounds of stays and sheets flapping in the summer breezes. Sit on the sea wall, or the patio of the Ness House Hotel and maybe watch the crews of the local rowing club in their gigs, or the clay boats gliding effortlessly into the harbour through the mouth of the River guided by so skillful pilots.
The village was once known for shipbuilding and fishing. With narrow winding streets, and fine Georgian properties fronting the Riverside. Shops from bakers to a pharmacy to galleries to greengrocers to gift shops to a mouth watering delicatessen to lots of places to eat, from tea shops to restaurants to a choice of over half a dozen delightful pubs.
Catch the foot ferry to Teignmouth, thought by many to be the oldest surviving ferry crossing in England.
Red sandstone cliffs of Ness Headland, guarding the mouth of the river, superb views over Shaldon across to Teignmouth and up the Estuary. In the woodland is the home of the Shaldon Wildlife Trust dubbed as 'the best little zoo in the West', emphasis on small animals, such as ring tailed lemurs, ocelots, the beautiful golden lion tamarind, and so cute family of meerkats, birds such as macaws, owls and kookaburra and reptiles- chameleons and geckos- small children in particular find them delightful. The Trust is an "International breeding centre for rare and endangered species" Did you know the trees on the Headland were only planted in Victorian times?
Shaldon Beach.Tucked into the Headland's western flank is Ness Cove Beach, accessible through Smugglers Tunnel hence down some steps. This rural beach is sheltered, unspoilt and a real sun trap. Fine shingle at high water, revealing sand at low water, even a few rock pools for the kids to explore.
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Shaldon Tourist Information Centre is in Ness Car Park. Have a game of golf on the Approach Course, club and ball hire available. Take the coastal drive to Torquay, or just a coastpath walk. You must stop at Labrador bay, on a clear far reaching views to Lyme Bay in the east and across to Brixham in the west. Over the red sandstone cliffs and out into the English Channel. Visit the Botanical Gardens at the top of the village with far reaching views
Shaldon Regatta. Not surprising given its seafaring tradition the village is still known for its Regatta, held over 10 days at the end of August each year. It is thought that a regatta held since at least 1817 making it one of the oldest in the Country. Admire the distinctive design of 11, 12 and 13 foot rowing boats. Even a gig and punt race, when the one man Shaldon crewed punt is 'raced' by the much larger Teignmouth Gig - an enactment to see who will pilot visiting vessels back into the harbour. Crews come from all over Devon and Cornwall to take part.
Lots of Places to eat and drink, from the Olde Tea Shoppe noted for its all day breakfasts- sit out on the veranada and watch the world go by. In Fore Street the Clifford Arms and Hunters Lodge, along the Strand the Ferryboat Inn and Bistro, to the superb ODE. Not forgetting Force 8 Wine Bar or the London Inn on the Green. A mile away in Ringmore is the Shipwrights Arms, (its Thai room particularly noted for the cuisine). Or in Stokeinteignhead the Church House Inn full of character.
Shaldon Holiday Park, for a Devon summer holiday with breathtaking views, and within walking distance of Ness Beach why not stay at Coast View?
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