Surrounding Area

With many local attractions and things to do locally... there is something for everyone!


Located between the village of Stoke Gabriel and the medieval town of Totnes, in glorious South Devon, Aish Cross Holiday Cottages are just a 5 minute drive from one of the country’s most beautiful rivers, the River Dart.


The River Dart valley is great place to spend a holiday appealing to familiescoupleswalkerswater enthusiasts and bird watchers alike. Just 1 mile away in Stoke Gabriel you can take a walk alongside the banks of the river, go crabbing or launch your own boat or canoe.


Just a 5 minute drive away is Paignton Zoo Environmental Park – one of the very best in England  attaching a high importance on conservation of species and with over 2000 animals – and it takes the same time to reach the quaint Elizabethan market town of Totnes, with its many individual shops and cafes (to preserve its independence and identity , the town famously voted to ban the opening of a Costa Coffee Shop!).


A 15 minute drive further down the Dart towards Kingswear you can visit the National Trust gardens of Greenway House, Agatha Christie’s previous home. From here you can take the short passenger ferry across to the picturesque waterside village of Dittisham and enjoy a pint and meal at The Ferry Boat Inn. At Kingswear take the car ferry across to Dartmouth. Here you can sample some fabulous food, great shopping and take one of many different boat trips on offer.


Also a 15 minute drive away is Coleton Fishacre – another lovely National Trust property with beautiful gardens – previously the country home of the D’Oyly Carte family.


Away from the Dart there are some great beaches within an easy drive including the popular Torbay beaches. Beyond Brixham, just off the beaten track is Mansands which is more peaceful. Just a 45 minutes drive you can get to the superb award winning blue flag rated Blackpool Sands and many other excellent beaches such as Bantham, Thurlestone – East Portlemouth (Salcombe).


The wonderful mild climate of the River Dart valley means it is a great place to enjoy all year round, perfect if you enjoy walkingfishingbird watching, eating & drinking, golfhorse-riding not forgetting canoeingsailing and crabbing.


Towns to visit

Torquay – Known for beaches such as Babbacombe and cliffside Oddicombe, Offers shops, cafes and a marina. Torre Abbey, a monastery founded in 1196, has art galleries and extensive gardens featuring plants from local writer Agatha Christie’s novels

Paignton –  with its long stretch of beach, traditional pier. There are plenty of shops, bars and cafes.

Brixham – a beautiful harbourside town and famous fish market. The Battery Gardens are worth a visit to view the spectacular coast line, or Berry Head, Breakwater beach.

Dartmouth – situated on the banks of the River Dart. Lots of to see and do.

Totnes – historic market town – with a relaxed atmosphere. Range of independent shops and coffee shops.

Stoke Gabriel 1 mile



The River Shack – 01803 782520
Situated between the millpond and the village quay the River Shack is a great place for breakfast, light lunches and evening meals (on selected days) coffee, ice cream and to watch the children crabbing.

Church House Inn – 01803 782384 
A characterful beamed local set on a cobbled path by the Church which serves great beer and cider as well as good ‘pub grub’.

Emmas Bistro – 01803 782697
Excellent home cooked food. Fish ‘n’ Chip night Wednesday – eat in or takeaway


Totnes 3 miles


The Waterside Bistro – 01803 864069
Great value casual eating as well as breakfast until 11.30am, and wine bar.

The Royal Seven Stars -01803 862125
Enjoy home cooked food in the saloon or eat in their restaurant TQ9 which offers a menu sourced from fresh, local ingredients, or their Brasserie.

Rumours Wine Bar – 01803 864682
Easy going and cosmopolitan – a bit alternative and unusual but excellent menu.
We like it and have had many fun evenings there.

Willow –  01803 862605
Popular vegetarian restaurant offering a great selection of vegetarian and vegan dishes.

Steam Packet Inn – 01803 863880
Particularly nice for lunch on a sunny day – tables in the open by the river.


 A little further a field

The Cott Inn – Dartington – 

One mile the other side of Totnes – a charming thatched pub which has won many accolades for its excellent food – one of our favorites – very busy in the summer – advisable to book in advance.


Bickley Mill Inn, Stoneycombe –
More of a restaurant, nice décor and an excellent wide range of menu.


The Linny – Kingskerswell  01803 873192
A warm welcome, tasty food and great choice of beers, wines and spirits


The White Hart, Dartington Hall –
Set in the middle of the Dartington Estate, perfect for summer lunches and with its huge fireplace great for winter time too.


The Malsters Arms, Tuckenhay – 
Situated on Bow Creek this waterside pub is in a stunning location. Great food and excellent spot to spend a summer lunch or try one of their regular evening BBQs


The Ship Inn – Noss Mayo -01752 872387
On the quayside, a lovely place to stop off following a walk along the coast. Watch the tide when you park your car!


The New Inn, Moreleigh – 01548 821326
A really good place to enjoy steak and chips. A hidden gem, beer from the barrel a real local.


Coppa Dola Inn – Broadhempston -01803 812455
Local pub with good atmosphere, home of the 2 in 1 pie


Amici – Torquay -01803 201770
Deliciously fresh Italian fine dining


The Cricket Inn – Beesands –01548 580215 –  Local sea food.


Shoals Cafe on the Lido – Brixham -01803 854874  Owned by long established trawling family – superb fresh fish from their boats.  Very casual and limited seating – booking essential – one of our favourites!


Rockfish Brixham 01803 850872 Part of a small local chain of fish restaurants and takeaways overlooking the harbour this is probably the best,  with fresh fish from their own trawler.


Le Bistrot Pierre – Torquay – 01803 221213 – – French Cuisine


Finally for those very special meals (more expensive!)

The Seahorse, Dartmouth 


The Angel – Dartmouth –


The Elephant , Torquay 


No 7 Restaurant , Torquay


The Orestone Manor, Torquay


Orange Tree – Torquay – 01803 213936


Quay West 
Open from May each year, this is a wet and wild water park set on Goodrington beach in Paignton. Great family fun.

Woodlands Leisure Park
60 acres of entertainment, 15 family rides + play zones designed for all ages. Watercoasters, Toboggan Run, Arctic Gliders & Bumper Boats and one of the biggest indoor venture zone around.


Crealy Theme Park and Resort

Southwest England’s largest family Theme Park attraction and is home to over 60 rides, attractions, live shows and a zoo.

Pennywell Farm & Wildlife Centre
Multi award winning farm activity park with lots of outside and indoor things to do and animals to see.

Miniature Pony Centre

Sitting on the edge of Dartmoor – a great day out for all the family.

China Blue                                                                      Paint your own pottery in  one of the largest studio’s in the South West – great for a rainy day!

Paignton Zoo Environmental Park 
There’s is a whole animal kingdom waiting to be explored all packed into 80 acres of natural habitat.

Buckfast Butterfly Farm and Dartmoor Otter Sanctuary

All weather viewing of otters and butterflies

Haldon Forest Park

Made up of 3500 acres of woodland. Great for walking or cycling with fantastic views. They have a Go Ape Centre located here too.

Kents Cavern –

Prehistoric Caves

Buckfast Abbey

Part of an active Benedictine Monastery, with beautiful gardens

Cockington Court –

Manor House with craft centre, set in the pretty thatched village of Cockington.



Paignton and Dartmouth Steam 
Jump aboard in Paignton, Goodrington beach or Kingswear and experience some stunning scenery along the Torbay Coastline.

South Devon Railway
This train follows the River Dart for 7 miles between Totnes and Buckfastleigh. Paid parking by the mainline train station or Totnes leisure centre and take the 10 walk to the platform

Take one of their many pleasure cruises on the River Dart, the Dartmouth to Totnes trip is the most popular where you can make a round trip by taking a steam train and open topped double decker bus.


Heritage places of interest all under 6 miles

Agatha Christie’s house on the banks of the River Dart. The beautiful garden stretch down to the river where you will find Christie’s bathhouse.

Coleton Fishacre
This 1920’s house is in the arts & crafts style. Gardens are a haven of dense woodland and filled with rhododendrons and a scattering of rare rainforest plants

Berry Pomeroy Castle 
Former home of the Pomeroy and Seymour families, set in woodland and is rumoured to be one of the most haunted castles in Britain.

Totnes Castle 
This castle has commanding views of Totnes and the River Dart. It is one of the best surviving examples of a Norman castle.

Compton Castle
A fairy tale castle which was used for the set of Sense and Sensibility (2005). It has a medley of fortified towers and battlements.

Dartington Hall & Gardens

The 1200-acre Dartington Hall estate is located in the heart of South Devon. This encompasses one of the finest gardens in the south west with many beautiful woodland and riverside walks.

The Sharpham Estate

Vineyard with classic English wines and cheese – sampling available.


Ashley’s Fishing Trips, Paignton Harbour 
Mackerel fishing trips and deep sea fishing trips


Cycle Hire

Torbay Cycle Hire                                         A family run business providing cycle hire of either manual or electric cycles.



The Vue – Cinema‎
Located on the seafront in Paignton with 9 screens including 3D screens.

The Barn Cinema, Dartington Estate 
This is an independent cinema set in a converted 14c barn with a wide film range program including art house, world and mainstream.


Horse Riding

Dittiscombe Equestrian Centre – 01548 581049
Located a few miles away from Slapton Sands the centre offer lessons and hacks for novice to experienced riders. Hacking in quiet country lanes and tracks. Indoor and Outdoor schools.

Cheston Equestrian Centre – 01364 649461
Hacking on Dartmoor and indoor school suitable for all levels.



Riviera Centre, Torquay 
Great wave pool with a flume.

Shoalstone Outdoor Pool 
A sea water pool with free entry situated near Berry Head in Brixham.

Totnes Leisure Centre, Brough Park, Totnes Tel: 01803 862992

Torbay Leisure Centre, Penwill Way, Paignton, Tel: 01803 522240




Churston Tennis Club 01803 844577

Torquay Tennis Lawn Club 
3 indoor courts as well as floodlit outside grass & claytex courts.


Water sports

Ski west water sports 
Water ski and jet ski hire.

South Devon Discovery Surf School 
Offers all year round tuition in Bigbury on Sea

Canoe Adventures
Guided tours on the river dart



Fine coastal headland course stretching along the cliffs towards Brixham.

Dainton Park
Undulating parkland course with water features on 6 holes and 2 of the toughest opening holes in Devon.

Torquay Golf

Great views over Babbacombe bay.

Stover Golf

Lovely parkland golf course.


Spectacular views overlooking Teignmouth and the Devon coast.


Dogs are not allowed on the following beaches between 1 May and 30 September.

  • Breakwater Beach
  • Broadsands Beach
  • Corbyn Head
  • Goodrington Sands (South Sands)
  • Hollicombe Beach
  • Meadfoot Beach (South western part)
  • Oddicombe Beach
  • Paignton Sands
  • Preston Sands
  • Torre Abbey Sands


However, dogs and their owners will still have access to the following beaches all year round:

  • Ansteys Cove
  • Babbacombe Beach
  • Beacon Cove
  • Beesands Beach
  • Churston Cove
  • Dawlish Town Beach/Dawlish Warren Beach – please check as some restriction apply.
  • East Portlemouth
  • Elberry Cove
  • Exmouth – please check information locally as some restrictions apply.
  • Fairy Cove
  • Fishcombe Cove
  • Goodrington Sands (North Sands)
  • Institute Beach
  • Livermead Sands
  • Maidencombe Beach
  • Meadfoot Beach (North Eastern part of the beach)
  • Millbay
  • Ness Cove, Shaldon
  • Oyster Cove
  • Peaked Tor Cove
  • Saltern Cove
  • Seaton Beach – please check locally as some restrictions apply.
  • Shoalstone Beach
  • Shelley Beach, Exmouth
  • Salcombe North Sands
  • Sidmouth Beach – please check locally as some restrictions apply
  • Slapton
  • St Marys Bay
  • Strete Gate
  • Teignmouth River Beach
  • Thurlestone/South Milton
  • Torcross
  • Watcombe Beach.

Dogs must be kept on a lead on the promenades.

If in doubt always check the carparks and signs by the beach for any restrictions.


Thurlestone Beach

One of the few dog friendly beaches you can find in Devon, Thurlestone Beach is a National Trust beach located near Kingsbridge.

The area offer hilly, flat and of course, beach walks, which is also a fairly quiet spot, which is unusual for most beaches in Devon.


Parke, Bovey Tracey

Part of the National Trust, Parke features lovely walks around the grounds and woodlands of the grand country Parke House.

There are many different types of walks to choose from, you can go through the woodlands, are along the streams.

Dogs are welcome in the grounds of the house, but are asked to be kept on a lead where stock is grazing. There are also animals across the grounds.

And to end this eventful walk, you can enjoy the dog friendly pub the Cleave


River Avon Dam, Dartmoor

An excellent scenic walk, as to be expected from Dartmoor. Starting at Shipley Bridge you will walk alongside the river where your dog may choose to have a dip in, before making your way up to the dam. The walk may be slightly hilly, but it is pathed the whole way, making it accessible for wheelchairs and pushchairs.


Stover Country Park

You can find this country park just before you reach Newton Abbot, where you will discover the surrounding woodland.

The only restriction for dogs is that they cannot go into the lake.


Bradley Woods

Just a nice recreational walk  – Newton Abbot


Below is a list of some of the dog friendly eateries in our local area in order of distance – do feel free to ask us for recommendations


Index Guide:-



R = Restaurant


Stoke Gabriel – 1 mile approx

The Castle Inn                         P          01803 782201

The Church House Inn           P          01803 782384

The River Shack                      C/R      01803 782520


Totnes – 3 miles approx

Waterside Bistro                    P/R      01803 864069             Outside with heaters not inside

The Steam Packet Inn           P/R      01803 863880             In bar area, and outside only

The Royal Seven Stars           P/R      01803 862125             All bars but not restaurants

Rumours Wine Bar                 P/R      01803 864682

Willow                                          R          01803 862605


Littlehempston 4.7 miles approx

The Pig and Whistle Inn         P/R      01803 863733

The Tally Ho                                P/R      01803 862316


Dartington – 5 miles approx

The Cott Inn                               P/R      01803 863777

The White Hart                          P/R         01803 847111          Outside only (Dartington Hall)


Paignton –  5 miles approx

East in the West                        R          01803 269875

The Boat House                      C/R         01803 665066

Ye Old Smokey House          P/R         01803 557630            Bar area only


Marldon 5.1 miles approx

The Church House Inn           P/R      01803 558279             Bar only, not restaurant


Ashprington 5.6 miles approx

The Durrant Arms                  P/R      01803 732240

The Watermans Arms            P/R      01803 73214               Bar only, not restaurant


Brixham  – 6.4 miles approx

Rockfish                                  P/R      01803 850872

The Ernie Lister Bar                  P/R      01803 855751


Staverton 6.5 miles approx

The Sea Trout                         P/R      01803 762274

Riverford Field Kitchen          R          01803 762074             Must advise when booking


Broadhempson – 6.5 miles approx

The Coppa Dolla                     P/R      01803 812455

The Monks Retreat                P/R      01803 812203


Harberton 6.6 miles approx

The Church House Inn           P/R      01803 863707


Tuckenhay –  7 miles approx

The Malsters Arms                 P/R      01803 732350


Torquay – 8 miles approx

Angel Cafe                              C          01803 324477

Le Bistrot Pierre                     R          01803 221213             Bar area, prior notice required


Moreleigh 10 Miles approx

The New Inn                           P/R      01548 821326


Cornworthy 10.7 miles approx

The Hunters Inn                     P/R      01803 732204


Bigbury 20 miles approx

The Oyster Shack                   R          01548 810876

Let’s get your holiday started… 


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