15 Things to See and Do in Plymouth and the South of England
- Walk the South West Coast Path.
The South West Coast Path is the longest footpath in England (1,014km!) that follows along the coast of Somerset, Cornwall, Devon, and Dorset. My friends and I stumbled across the path a few times throughout our travels, so we got to see bit and pieces of its beautiful views throughout the counties!
2. Take the ferry to Mount Edgecumbe.
A quick 10-minute (and £2) ferry from Royal William Yard brings you over to Mount Edgecumbe in Cornwall. The beautiful mountain has the best views of Plymouth and gorgeous beaches. If you visit in the spring or summer months, you’ll also be able to see the gorgeous gardens filled with roses and wildflowers.
Ride the Ferris wheel on Bournemouth Beach.
Bournemouth is perfect for a little getaway to the beach. The vibrant city is right on the water, and has lots of fun activities with the pier and Ferris wheel!
4. Have a picnic on the Plymouth Hoe Waterfront.
The second the sun comes out; the Hoe is packed with students and families there to enjoy the weather. Grab some friends and a disposable barbeque, and you’ll be sure to have an incredible afternoon looking out at the ocean.
5. Take a day trip to Dartmoor National Park.
Dartmoor National Park is a huge attraction in Devon with its landscape of heatherclad moors and rugged tors. It’s home to wild ponies, great cycling trails, and the Dartmoor Zoological Park from the movie We Bought a Zoo! Just make sure to do your research and take the bus to the right stop (the visitors’ centre or Tavistock), Dartmoor is a huge park and my friends and I accidentally ended up at the completely wrong side. But don’t worry, wherever you go is sure to be beautiful!
6. Go for cream teas at Tudor Rose.
Devon is famous for its cream teas – which is a cuppa with scones, jam and clotted cream. The name ‘clotted’ sounds a little bit skeptical, but trust me, it’s delicious!
7. Visit St. Michael’s Mount.
St. Michael’s Mount is a tidal island with a family castle, just off the beach in Marazion, Cornwall. When the tide is low, you can walk across the pathway to the island and visit the pretty little paradise.
8. Have a beach day at Durdle Door.
Did you know that the south of England is home to tons of beautiful tropical beaches? This one at Durdle Door on the Jurassic Coast is by far my favourite!
9. Try a pasty from Friary Mills Bakery.
I became quite the pasty connoisseur while I was in Plymouth, which is known for some of the best pasties in the South! My favourites were from Friary Mills Bakery, and they quickly became my Monday lunch tradition. Note: it’s pronounced pah-sty, just to avoid any confusion with the bakers 😉
10. Explore prehistoric caves in Torquay.
Torquay is a gorgeous little hidden gem town in Devon. Take a quick day trip by train for beautiful ocean landscapes and tours of incredible prehistoric caves!
11. Go rock climbing/jumping at Bovisands Bay
Just a 10-minute drive out of Plymouth can take you to the beautiful Bovisands Bay. My friends and I spent hours rock climbing and enjoying the ocean views.
12. Watch the surfers in Newquay.
The south of England is known for its surfing, especially in Newquay. The cute little beach town is the perfect place to watch surfers or, if you’re brave enough, try it yourself!
13. Go for fish and chips at The Harbour in the Barbican.
You can’t go to England without having a least one fish and chip supper! My favourite place for this local staple was The Harbour, which is right off the ocean in the Barbican.
14. Tour the underground pathways in Exeter.
One of my favourite parts about the south of England was the super cheap train tickets, which made it easy to take fun day trips. Exeter is a city full of heritage, and you can even take a tour of the narrow underground pathways that are built underneath the city’s main square.
15. Watch the sunset from Royal William Yard.
The sunsets in England were some of the most beautiful I’ve ever seen. Nothing beats sitting on the beach watching the sun go down with your new best friends!