Little Dartmouth

Coast path below the cliffs

Little Dartmouth

Small, but perfectly formed, this satisfying circuit is full of character and interest, offering glorious views from the cliffs, the tang of the sea close up on the rocky shore, the rich history of the castle and the beautiful River Dart.


This walk includes two hidden AONB geocache, however, be prepared to go off the beaten track to hunt for them!

Information about geocaching and the exact locations of the full series of South Devon AONB geocache and the GPS coordinates required to find them.


Start National Trust car park, Redlap, Little Dartmouth.
Distance 3.5 miles
Circular Walk? Yes
Grade Moderate

Coastal footpath with occasional uneven sections and mud in wet weather; surfaced road; bridleway.

Obstacles and steep gradients

1 stile; 3 flights of steps (+5 on alternative route); 2 steep descents; 2 steep ascents.


This route is not suitable for wheelchairs or pushchairs.

Public transport

To Dartmouth: bus service 93 from Kingsbridge, Modbury and Plymouth. Bus service 111 from Totnes. Regular seasonal ferry from Dartmouth to Dartmouth Castle 01803 835034. For information on public transport in South Hams please call Traveline on 0871 200 22 33 or visit

Refreshment stops

Many cafés, restaurants and pubs in Dartmouth. Castle Tea Rooms at Dartmouth Castle, open daily.


Public toilets by car park at Dartmouth Castle.


National Trust car park, Redlap, Little Dartmouth. By donation.


Please contact Dartmouth Tourist Information Centre 01803 834224 or visit

Other facilities

Public payphone by car park at Dartmouth Castle.

OS map Explorer OL20
Grid reference SX874491


1. Start walk through seaward side car park signed 'link to Coast Path, Dartmouth 2.5m'.

2. Follow field edge path down.  Through kissing gate, head to right of bench and bear left along coast path.

3. Drop down through the valley beyond Compass Cove, following 'acorn' waymarker.  Towards the bottom of the valley bear right, over stile, and then left.  Follow coast path down steps and along above the tide line.

4. Path eventually passes through woods.  Bear right where path joins lane.

5. Here you have a choice.  Option one is to continue down road.

6. Alternatively, turn immediately right upon joining road, down footpath.  Turn right at waymarker and follow coast path down steps and above sea.  This route enjoys fine sea views, but involves several flights of steps and some 'up and down'.  The route emerges past a picnic area to the road.  Turn right and immediately right again as directed below to rejoin the main route.

7. Turn right down steps signed 'Coast Path, Dartmouth Castle' to visit the castle.

8. To return, retrace your route back up the steps and turn left along the road.

9. Follow the road, passing sign reading 'Access to Compass Cove Cottages and Coastguard Station'.

10. Where road ends, go straight on through gate and follow bridleway.

11. Continue straight through Little Dartmouth Farm and back to the car park.



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