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You are here: Explore South Devon > Dawlish



Tel: +44 01626 215665

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Hotels in Dawlish
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Attractions and Things To Do in Dawlish

If your idea of a perfect holiday is a pristine seaside resort in the true Victorian tradition of railway, buckets and spades and a promenade, then Dawlish is the answer. This town is a unique take on the traditional beach holiday, with a real community feel to the town and all the traditional excitement of the sand and the sea.


The first inhabitants of Dawlish were fisherman and salt makers. This industry continued through the Roman occupation, and the town also benefited from farming in the surrounding countryside. Although it attracted literary figures such as Charles Dickens and Jane Austen, it was the railway that transformed Dawlish, allowing many more visitors to enjoy its classic Regency and early Victorian styles and ‘partake of the bracing sea air’.

Things to do

There are plenty of things for you and the kids to do in Dawlish, most notably the long sandy beach, which provides the perfect way to spend a summer’s day swimming, exploring rock pools or boating. The town has plenty of interesting shops and a pleasant park where you can see the famous black swans of Dawlish glide sedately along the river. But be careful – they can get very greedy if you take a few crusts of bread along for them.

Food and drink

For traditional seaside fare, Dawlish has all the hot pie and fish and chip shops you would wish for, with freshly caught, picked and farmed produce in abundance.

Something a little different

Dawlish is a railway resort in the great British sense, and from either direction the Great Western main line is regarded as one of the most scenic in Britain. It runs along the coast under the distinct red brown cliffs literally a few metres from the shoreline and cutting through a series of dramatic tunnels and coves. It’s well worth exploring the remains of Brunel’s Atmospheric Railway, an abandoned system of using atmospheric power to propel trains that proved impractical and costly. Pumping stations and exhibits can be seen along the line and in local museums.

What's Nearby

  1. Dawlish Town Beach

    Within a short walk from the town centre, Dawlish Town Beach is ideal to escape the hustle and...

    0.25 miles away
  2. Coryton Cove Beach

    Rock pools to explore, occasional sightings of dolphins, brightly coloured painted beach huts,...

    0.48 miles away
  3. Holcombe Beach

    A small cove situated at the base of the cliffs between Teignmouth and Dawlish. A small isolated...

    1.24 miles away
  1. Dawlish Warren Tourism Group

    The family beach resort with shops, amusements, go-karts, adventure golf, pubs and accommodation. A...

    1.57 miles away
  2. Dawlish Warren Beach - Nature & Wildlife Reserve

    Dawlish Warren's most valuable ecological asset appears outside of the summer months - the descent...

    1.88 miles away
  3. Dawlish Warren Beach

    Dawlish Warren prides itself on being one of South Devon's top family beaches. Distinctive sand...

    1.88 miles away
  4. Dawlish Warren National Nature Reserve Visitor Centre

    The Visitor Centre has a range of displays which tell you more about Dawlish Warren. A bird...

    1.97 miles away
  5. Teignmouth Town Beach

    A long sandy beach from the mouth of the River Teign east towards Dawlish. Free summer...

    2.69 miles away
  6. Little Haldon Heaths

    Situated to the north of the Teign Estuary, Little Haldon is particularly important for its large...

    2.9 miles away
  7. Teignmouth River Beach

    Located on the estuary side of town, this charming beach takes you back to days gone by. Local...

    2.91 miles away
  8. Shaldon Beach

    A mix of shingle and sand, the beach gently shelves towards the estuary mouth with views over...

    3.31 miles away
  9. Ness Cove Beach

    Ness Cove at Shaldon nestles in between magnificent red cliffs and is accessed via an original...

    3.44 miles away
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