Salcombe – South Devon’s most attractive sailing centre


Salcombe is Devon’s southernmost harbour.  It lies beside a vast inlet called the Salcombe estuary though technically it is a ria – a landlocked salt-water inlet, designated a Site of Special Scientific interest in 1987 and a Local Nature Reserve in 1992. Once a flourishing trading port specialising in the fruit trade, today’s Salcombe is a bustling seaside town that offers everything; sailing and watersports, coastal walks, shops tucked up tiny side streets and a wide choice of pubs and restaurants.

The Overbecks Garden, which belongs to the National trust, is a splendid place to visit – they have plants from all around the world and even bananas. The adjoining house is open from Easter to October. The Maritime Museum in Market Street is well worth a visit, also the Royal National Lifeboat Museum with its models of past lifeboats. 

From Salcombe, it’s easy to visit the estuary’s beautiful beaches. Simply pick up the South Sands ferry or the East Portlemouth ferry in town. Estuary boat trips run from Whitestrand Quay to enable you to explore the estuary and its wildlife. They are a must for first time visitors. There are also boat trips out along the coast as well as fishing trips.