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Nine dog-friendly walks in Devon

Devon is one of England’s great treats, with history, culture and areas of outstanding natural beauty. Devon is easy and fun for dog owners, thanks to the many dog-friendly walks, restaurants and cottages available. Here are nine dog-friendly walks that will keep you and your dog entertained.

1. Saunton Beach

Address and map: Saunton Road, Saunton, Braunton

Difficulty: Easy

Walk length: Just over three miles

Terrain: Vast open beaches, some slopes and sand dunes

Saunton Beach is dog-friendly all year round. The only restriction is that your four-legged friend must be on a lead at the start of the beach. There on, your pooch can enjoy three miles of free-roaming sand. The beach is located just beyond Saunton.

Dog-friendly pit-stop: The Beachside Grill is a great stop after a walk along the beach. They allow dogs on their terrace so you can both enjoy views of the sea.

2. South Milton Sands to Hope Cove

Address and map: South Milton Sands, Kingsbridge TQ7 3JY

Difficulty: Easy

Walk length: One and a half miles

Terrain: Sandy beaches, a cliffside walk and hilly in parts

South Milton Sands to Hope Cove is one of the shorter dog walks in Devon. South Milton Sands is just outside Thurlestone. The walk across the dog-friendly beach is great for a paddle and a game of fetch. Further, towards Hope Cove, you will move onto the South West Coast Path. Hope Cove is a traditional fishing village with postcard cottages. Keep in mind that Mouthwell Sands is only dog friendly in the winter months.

Dog-friendly pit-stop: The Lobster Pod Bistro in Hope Cove is a futuristic dog-friendly restaurant where you can eat in a pod instead of a table.

3. Haldon Forest Park

Address and map: Haldon Forest Park, Bullers Hill, Kennford, Exeter, EX6 7XR

Difficulty: Easy or hard, it’s your choice!

Walk length: One mile or six

Terrain: Flat woodland paths, hills and tough off-road surface

On the outskirts of Newton Abbot is Haldon Forest Park, a huge mass of 3,500 acres of woodland, ideal for a day out walking. Your dog will be allowed to explore the forest in no-lead areas and take in their surroundings with pure delight.

Dog-friendly pit-stop: The Ley Arms is a cosy, dog-friendly 12th-century pub in the village of Kenn.

4. Torcross to Hallsands

Address and map: Torcross, Kingsbridge

Difficulty: Medium

Walk length: Just under two and a half miles

Terrain: Long, flat shingle beaches, hilly coastal walks and small villages

Beginning this walk at Torcross and finishing in Hallsands takes you through some of Devon’s wide and varied history. Torcross Beach provides excellent dog-friendly fun with long open stretches of shingle beach. You’ll also be able to see a Sherman Tank standing proud in memory of American servicemen. At Hallsands, you’ll have the opportunity to look down at what remains of a village swept away during a storm in 1917.

Dog-friendly pit-stop: The Cricket Inn is set right on the beach in the village of Beesands. Dogs are welcome but only in the bar area.

5. Killerton

Address and map: Killerton House Exeter EX5 3LE

Difficulty: Medium

Walk length: Two miles to six and a half miles

Terrain: Flat woodland trails, with some uneven ground and hilly areas

Killerton, near the town of Honiton, is a dog-friendly country park with small areas either being guide dog-only or on-lead zones. The circular routes change from open plains to wildlife-filled woods and even extinct volcanoes. There are good dog facilities at Killerton with water bowl points, dog waste bins and a hose to clean your mucky pup after a fun walk.

Dog-friendly pit-stop: The Red Lion is a cosy dog-friendly pub, in the village of Broadclyst, dating back to the 16th-century.

6. Salcombe to Bolt Head

Address and map: South Sands Beach, Salcombe TQ8 8LJ

Difficulty: Easy

Walk length: A short walk, at just one mile

Terrain: A gradual rise in gradient over the walk

The Salcombe to Bolt Head walk starts on South Sands, in South Devon, which welcomes dogs, off-season, from the 1st of October to the 30th of April. This gradual walk is one of Devon’s easier walking routes but still offers stunning views. You can expect to encounter a panoramic view of the estuary from Bolt Head. There is lots to see and do in Salcombe, so definitely worth a visit.

Dog-friendly pit-stop: East Soar Walkers Hut is not far from Bolt Head and welcomes dogs on leads. It relies on an honesty box and the owners bake cakes and provide hot drinks for walkers.

7. Wistmans Wood

Address and map: Car Park for Wistman's Wood, B3357, Princetown, Yelverton PL20 6SR

Difficulty: Medium

Walk length: One mile to Wistman’s Woods, then three hectares of exploration

Terrain: Rough and rocky woodland terrain

If you fancy a trip into Dartmoor National Park, Wistman’s Woods is a great choice. With a wood of twisted, ancient trees, haunting rocks and strange tales, both you and your dog can have an adventure. Not far from where you begin your walk is the small village of Postbridge, where you can rest after your exploration.

Dog-friendly pit stop: The Two Bridges Hotel is dog-friendly; phone to book a meal.

8. Branscombe to Beer

Address and map: Branscombe, Seaton EX12 3DB
Difficulty: Medium

Walk length: Just over three miles

Terrain: Hilly, steep trails, villages and coastal paths

Beginning in Branscombe and moving down towards the dog-friendly pebble beach for a quick run around, before the climb up to join the South West Coast Path. Once the steep climb is over, you can enjoy the coastal views from Hooken Cliffs and Beer Head. Beer is nestled on the Jurassic Coast near the large town of Seaton. The beach is dog friendly during the winter.

Dog-friendly pit stop: The Barrel of Beer is a great dog-friendly pub with excellent beer.

9. Ashclyst Forest

Address and map: Forest Gate Car Park, Long Meadow, Broadclyst, Exeter EX5 Difficulty: Easy

Walk length: Three miles

Terrain: Forest trails, uneven paths and flat.

Run by the National Trust, Ashclyst Forest is set in East Devon. Although not an official nature reserve, its circular walk acts as a lush sanctuary for a myriad of flowers, insects and animals. Particularly popular with dog walkers alike, this forest provides your sniffing friend with a wide variety of delights.

Dog-friendly pit stop: The Red Lion is a nearby quaint 16th-century pub with dog-friendly tables available to book.