Festivals, historical houses and galleries galore, Dartmouth ticks all the boxes if you’re looking for a holiday hotspot with a great foodie and cultural vibe.
Dartmouth is the festival capital of South Devon with an event filled calendar throughout the year. Whenever you choose to visit, you’re sure to find seasonal activities and local attractions taking place.
So for starters, there’s the Flavel, Dartmouth’s very own arts destination. This modern glass-fronted arts centre has a theatre, cinema and library. The Flavel is not only centrally located but is the beating heart of the town’s entertainment hosting live music, opera, theatre art gallery and wellbeing clubs and classes …
Art Galleries in Dartmouth
Dartmouth has been popular for centuries with both contemporary and traditional artists and the River Dart has been an inspiration for many who visited and stayed, setting up Galleries in the town. So it’s little wonder that Dartmouth’s narrow streets are lined with art galleries.
The town celebrates the artists and their work with two Galleries Weeks which are held during May and October. During this time both established and up and coming artists showcase their work and the public can meet and chat to the artists and watch demonstrations and of course, buy your own piece of art to take home.
Baxters Gallery on the corner of Foss Street and Flavel Street for the best in contemporary art, printmaking, sculpture, craft and jewellery.
White Sails Gallery specialising in originals, limited editions, prints and photography plus ceramics, bronzes and glassware.
The Dart Gallery in Lower Street showcasing a broad selection of work by established, contemporary British artists including the award winning Nick Mackman whose ceramic and bronze animal sculptures are beautiful!
Festivals in Dartmouth
Dartmouth has many annual festivals and events, so here’s a rundown of what’s on when.
Dart Music Festival the annual Dart Music Festival takes over the town for 3 days and the streets come alive with the sound of music. With 100+ acts set to perform at this free family friendly event it showcases some of the best music talent around!
Dart the Dart Foodie Fun Run A fancy dress fun filled food run where runners and walkers nibble culinary delights and drinks at a host of different venues enroute, while wearing fancy dress! Profits from the event help to support the Dartmouth Food Festival.
Woofstock UK It’s all about dogs! An award winning dog and family friendly festival with live music, dog show displays plus many stalls packed with local produce. Now held at Powderham Castle.
Dartmouth Shakespeare Week Enjoy a spectacular performance of Shakespeare with the beautiful backdrop of Dartmouth Castle
Port of Dartmouth Royal Regatta The best time to visit Dartmouth for water-related activities, has to be August when the Port of Dartmouth Royal Regatta transforms the town into a hub of water-borne festivities.
Dittisham Regatta – just across the river from Dartmouth is the pretty waterfront village of Dittisham. The annual regatta is great for a family day out with rowing, sculling and whaler races.
Devon Open Studios Artists open up their workshops to visitors and fellow creatives for a chance to view and artist at work and perhaps pick up a piece of work
Agatha Christie Festival Celebrates Agatha Christie and discovers her literary connection to Dartmouth and South Devon. A week of walks, films, workshops, cultural talks,and performances.
Dartmouth Food Festival a fine food feast celebrating local produce and food producers as well as local eateries and chefs. “A heady mix of celebrity chefs, parties, food markets, tasting shacks and demonstrations” The Telegraph
Candlelit Dartmouth – Get into the festive spirit as the town comes alive with the Candlelit Dartmouth Festival, a candlelit procession and the arrival of Father Christmas by boat.
The Polar Express at South Devon Railway for a magical Christmas Experience unlike any other.
National Trust properties near Dartmouth
Who doesn’t love a National Trust property, they offer something for all ages, from family friendly treasure hunts to a fascinating insight into a bygone era. So here’s a guide to the National Trust properties on the Dartmouth doorstep.
Coleton Fishacre is just three miles from the village of Kingswear and is easily accessed via the Higher or Lower Ferry from Dartmouth. Discover the delightful Art Deco style and step back in time to the 1920s. This charming country residence dates back to 1926 and is the former home of Rupert and Dorothy D’Oyly Carte. It’s a sheer delight to wander through the house with its minimalist interiors while listening to the pianist tinkle the ivories. Don’t forget to visit the gardens, they’re beautiful and dog friendly too!
Take the Greenway Ferry from Dartmouth or book a parking space and drive via the upper ferry also from Dartmouth. Greenway is the former holiday home of the ‘Queen of Crime’ Agatha Christie and it’s a fascinating insight into her life, her passion for archaeological expeditions. The gardens are equally as impressive as the 1940’s house, take a stroll along the path which meanders through the woods down to the boat house on the banks of the River Dart and you can feel the presence of Poirot.
With Dartmouth’s long standing tradition of sailing and with the presence of the Royal Navy it goes without saying that there’s plenty of action on the water all year round. And with Britannia Royal Naval College standing proud overlooking the river Dart and the many historical buildings that remain, you’ll find there’s always something for history buffs too. Look out for the fun family activities at Dartmouth Castle and Bayards Cove Fort.
Don’t forget Dartmouth Farmers’ Market
For locally sourced produce and source every second Saturday of the month from 9am to 1pm. If you’re planning a trip to Dartmouth during the school holidays you’ll find additional events going on in the town for example, over Christmas, Easter and Halloween so check out our blog page for the latest news.