English Riviera Walk – Broadsands & Churston Cove Circular Walk

Posted by: on Oct 18, 2017 | No Comments

English Riviera Walk –Broadsands & Churston Cove Circular Walk

Distance: 3.1 miles
Exertion: Moderate
Time: Allow 1.5 hours
Terrain: Coastpath, pathways and a short road section
Access: Steep, rocky and rooty coastpath
Dogs: Free to roam where safe
Refreshments: Broadsands Kiosk and Churston Court Inn
Start postcode: TQ1 2BG

One of our favourite local circular walks starts and ends at Broadsands Beach.  The obvious attractions are the glorious sandy beach, the steam railway running behind and the wonderful views snatched between the ancient trees of Marridge Wood that line the coast path.

However, this is also a wonderful area for birdwatching with a chance to see egrets, grey heron, woodpeckers, various birds of prey and lots of smaller species.  Keep an eye out for grey seals frolicking in the shallows.  A great walk for dogs, they can roam and swim freely on Elberry and Churston Cove.

Two thirds of the way round there’s a chance to stop for refreshments at the ancient Churston Court where one can shake off the autumnal chill alongside suits of armour and a roaring fire.

1 From the Brixham end of Broadsands beach, stroll up on to Elberry Common keeping close to the water’s edge with its sparkling, rocky inlets. On a windy day watch out for small birds of prey hovering in the updraft at the low cliff edges whilst scouting for food in the undergrowth. Drop down the grassy hill, going through the kissing gate towards Elberry Cove.  This is a good spot to photograph birds before taking the left hand path down some steps to the beach.

2 Here the pretty pebble beach of Elberry Cove is a wonderful place to sit, paddle, or just gaze across the Bay.  Lord Churston’s 18th century salt-water bathhouse can still be seen at the end of the beach, a fascinating ruin, lapped by the waves.

3 At the far end of the beach take some steep steps up into Marridge Woods.  At the top of the steps take the left fork to follow the coast path towards Brixham. The path is stony and criss-crossed by ancient root systems so take care during the autumn leaf fall. Fleeting glimpses right across the Bay to Torquay offer an unusual perspective.

4 As the path turns inland take the left fork downward to pretty Churston Cove home to the Bay’s most often viewed grey seal and also site of delicate seagrass beds.

5 The coast path rises steeply away from the cove on the far side leading up into the Grove woods. Follow the path as far uphill as possible until clear of the woods you cross open pasture.

6 The path joins an ancient bridleway and skirts the ancient Grove and Ball Copse before coming to Copythorne Road.

7 Turn right as you leave the bridleway and take the next right into Churston Village via Church Road. At the end of the road you will find the ancient Churston Court Inn formerly Churston Ferrers Manor.  The ancient house is rumoured to house smugglers’ tunnels that lead to nearby Elberry Cove and as far as away as Berry Pomeroy! Follow the road past the church of St Mary the Virgin resplendent with its recently restored tower then carry straight on ignoring the next two roads to the left.

8 Follow the pathway beside the houses and out across the Churston golf links – dogs on leads here! As the path descends into the woods turn left onto the gravel path and follow this back down towards the headland at Elberry Cove.

9 As the path joins Elberry Lane take the central path through onto the headland and return to Broadsands.