Walking With Bailey:
The Little Theatre to Meadfoot (Circular)
The best walks in Devon aren't necessarily on Dartmoor. You can find them in fields, along country lanes, or even in towns. Today, a dog walk in Torquay.
I’ve started the walk at a lovely old theatre, tucked away from the main shopping centre and harbour in Torquay. The Little Theatre in St Mark’s road, Meadfoot, is actually an old church. Converted in 1986, it has been wonderfully transformed into what is undoubtedly a brilliant venue for amateur and professional productions. It’s the home of TOADS amateur theatre society, who put on ten plays a year, and plays host to a number of visiting theatre companies. There’s always something for everyone. It has a bar and a coffee shop, and also sells local ice cream.
The area is steeped in history and charm, and is said to be one of the most opulent areas of Torquay. Turning right at the bottom of St Mark’s road, we head towards Meadfoot Beach. It’s quite an imposing stretch along here. To the right there's the sea and lovely views towards Paignton and Brixham, to the left, a huge woodland area. What struck me was the number of pigeons! There was literally hundreds of them, all busy picking the berries off the trees and very noisy.
There had been some very high tides and wind over the last few days, and the pavement was covered in pebbles, however the little bit of beach I could see was very sandy, and if the tide hadn’t been in I know Bailey would have loved a run on the beach.
It seems a popular place for dog walkers, runners and cyclists - walking in Devon is popular for a reason. I lost count of the number of runners I saw, but it’s such a great area to do a circular walk in Devon. There are quite a few options for how you do this walk too; there’s a pathway which leads you out to a huge field, and also to the left there’s a woodland walk, as well as a coast path walk. We did a bit of field and woodland today.
We walked halfway up the field then crossed over a very muddy bridge and into the woods. It was so pretty. A signpost pointed right towards Kent’s Cavern, so we followed that. The path was steep in places, and there are a few steps to go up, so possibly not suitable for everyone. Near the top of the path is a turning on the right which takes you to the door of Kent’s Cavern, site of prehistoric Stone Age caves and a labyrinth of caverns. It’s open every day except Christmas Day, and is one of the best of its kind in Europe.
From here we made our way back down the road and turned right into the field, then back to where we started – at the delightful Little Theatre. Some of the best walks in Devon really are the most unexpected.