Over looking the turquoise sea of Water Mouth Bay on the stretch from Combe Martin to Illfracombe on The South West Coast Path
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Combe Martin to Woolacombe: Walk The South West Coast Path

The stunning coastline running from Combe Martin to Ilfracombe on The South West Coast Path
Ragged rocks, turquosie sea and lush greenery come together beautifully

Distance: 12.6miles (in two sections)

Severity: Moderate to strenuous, moderate to easy (out of Lee Bay strenuous)

Time it took us: 6hrs 50mins including break for lunch

Steps: 33,020

The phrase 'picture postcard' certainly sums up this section of The South West Coast Path with sensation views littered with gorgeous coves and emerald green sea.

Light purple foxgloves seems to have become a feature on our walks so far, they seem to be growing everywhere and add a beautiful splash of contrasting colour.

It almost seems 'uneventful' compare to the last two sections we've walked, but on this Path, nothing is uneventful. Around every corner is a new view to take your breath away. Oh, and new hills to climb of course which literally do take your breath away.

Ilfracombe harbour on the South West Coast Path walk from Combe Martin
Ilfracombe harbour

We pass Watermouth Cove and Widmouth Head and eventually reach a view point overlooking Ilfracombe harbour. We begin to dream of burger and chips - it is husband's birthday after all - and after passing Damien Hirst's controversial bronze statue 'Verity’ which has won the town international acclaim, we head into town and find the meal of our dreams at ‘The Hip and Pistol’ watering hole.

Fuelled up and raring to push on, the road led us from the harbour up steps behind the Landmark Theatre, and on to the Torrs Walk.

Clear blue sky, blue sea, jagged cliffs and a solitary pink foxglove on the South West Coast Path walk from Combe Martin to Woolacombe
A solitary Foxglove adds contrasting colour to our walk

Across a stile and we suddenly came across a herd of cows charging down a hill in the distance. We could see one poor lone woman stood near bracken shouting for what we assume is her dog.

Keeping a safe distance and following advice on safety around cows, we waited for them pass before cautiously walking up the path from where they’d come. We kept our eyes peeled for any strays and made a large diversion when we came across the odd cow left behind. Eventually we were out the other side and eventually into Lee Bay.

Cocker spaniels Molly and Indy cool off in the sea on the walk from Combe Martin to Woolacombe
Cockers Indy and Molly cool down in the sea

Climbing out the other side of the bay was rather steep, followed by a further two steep valleys, but eventually we arrived at Bull Point lighthouse.

The Path continues across the headland and grassy fields taking in the stunning views, including Morte Point, a spectacular jagged slate ridge which some compare to a dinosaur's back which emerges from the sea.

The walk continues beneath the cliffs and past some small sandy coves before finally arriving hot, sweaty and tired in Woolacombe, and of course, to recover with a couple of pints!

Combe Martin to Ilfracombe (5 miles) Illfracombe to Woolacombe (7.5 miles).

Verity, Damien Hirst's controversial bronze statue on the harbour at Ilfracombe
Verity by Damien Hirst

Gwelmor Dog Friendly Holiday Cottage

Just four minutes’ walk from the beach at Widemouth Bay, Gwelmor is a luxurious, self-catering holiday cottage which sleeps six (plus travel cot).

Our property welcomes three dogs and has a host of provisions to make your dog's stay as relaxing as yours.

Gwelmor was named the South West’s Best Dog Friendly Business of the Year 2021/2022 and won Gold at the Cornwall Tourism Awards 2021/2022.

Why not take our virtual tour and book your stay today!

Gwelmor in Widemouth Bay
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Cornwall Tourism Award 2020 / 2021