Plymouth Hoe

Top Plymouth Walks

Discover the beautiful coastal path which clings to the coast from Royal William Yard, along the Hoe and down to the Barbican, over the River Plym and into the South Hams. The countryside around Plymouth is simply stunning and just waiting to be explored. From the gentle banks and creeks of the River Tamar (an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty) to the rugged tors and reservoirs of the captivating Dartmoor National Park. Perfect for nature lovers with its indigenous ponies, rare birds and butterflies. And then of course there’s the fabulous coastline where the crystal clear waters lap onto sandy coves…  A holiday in Plymouth isn’t complete without a little exploration!  

The best way to explore any city is on foot so we’ve put together some of the top walking routes in Plymouth showcasing the sights. Step back in time and discover Plymouth’s rich history with this collection of excellent walking trails to guide you around the city. : Mayflower Trail, Hoe Trail, City Centre Trail, Rainbow Connections Trail, Plymouth’s Powerful Women Trail, Waterfront Walkway (South West Coast Path), American Tree Trail, Sutton Harbour Heritage Trail, Devonport Heritage Trail.

Plymouth Waterfront Walkway

9.3 miles (14.9 km)

Admirals Hard, Stonehouse – PL1 3RJ  Jennycliff – PL9 9SWModerate

This gentle walk explores Plymouth Hoe, The Barbican and the Mount Batten breakwater showcasing the city’s history. The family can stretch their legs on this city amble which sticks to the pavements so it’s perfect for buggies. You can of course just follow a smaller section of the walk if the 9 miles is a bit of a hike for the kids!   

Full details of the walk and the route here 

Photo credit: Visit Plymouth

Plymouth Beaches

Plymouth to the River Yealm

15.0 miles (24.2 km), Plymouth  Wembury Point

Moderate – Easy to moderate

This route includes the Plymouth Waterfront Walk and extends it to take in the stunning South West Coast path into the South Hams. Follow the path around to Bovisand Beach and Heybrook Bay for some amazing coastal views across Plymouth Sound to Drake’s Island and to the Rame Peninsula. Then heading west to the beautiful Yealm estuary and Noss Mayo. Time it right and you can stop off at The Ship at Noss for a well earned lunch!

Full details of the walk plus route here

Photo credit: Visit Plymouth

Plymouth Beaches

Heybrook Bay to Wembury Beach

3.3 miles (5.3 km)

Follow a slice of the Plymouth to the River Yealm Walk and try this shorter section to get into your stride. This easy route takes just over an hour and is great for birdwatching and wildflowers in the springtime. It also offers the opportunity to do a little fishing so don’t forget to pack your rod and (fingers crossed) you may even catch your supper! This popular trail is great for families and a lovely dog walk too but dogs should be kept on leads.

Follow the route here

Photo credit: Visit Plymouth

Explore Dartmoor National Park

Dartmoor is so close to Plymouth with its wild ponies, towering tors and stunning landscape it’s well worth the 20 minute drive to the edge of the moor. Discover a landscape dotted with stone crosses, menhirs and ancient villages – in fact, Dartmoor is home to the largest number of archaeological remains in Europe! Look out for the rare butterflies including the rare marsh fritillary butterfly and an abundance of birdlife.

Take care when walking on the moor, the weather can change in an instant so we recommend following designated routes.

Plymouth walks

Avon Dam & Zeal Tor Tramway

7 miles medium difficulty (or 3 miles easy, to the dam and back). Toilets and information board. Car park.

The start of this walk is about a 20 minute drive out of Plymouth at Shipley Bridge near South Brent (TQ10 9EL). This lovely walk to Avon Dam is tarmacked and follows the River Avon. The river is dramatic, lined with giant granite rocks as it opens up onto moorland with sheep grazing. You can either stop at the Dam and retrace your steps back to the car park or continue onto Huntingdon Cross, Petre’s Cross and the Tramway. This is part of the former Zeal Tor tramway which dates back to 1846 and delivered the clay and peat from Redlake to Shipley Bridge. Look out for the iron nails and stones along the ground..

You can pick up the trail and details of the walk here.

Photo credit: Visit Plymouth

More info about walking on Dartmoor, including routes, accessibility and advice on dog walking here