Cloud, Sea, Sand and Lots of Walking: A Short Weekend in Devon

Isn’t it typical – the Sun comes out on the day I return to the office after a weekend away!

I spent 2 nights over the weekend on the South Coast of England – I never really do any of the ‘touristy’ bits of Britain as I go abroad so much, but sometimes its nice to stay in my home country!

Travelling from work in Fairford on Friday night, it took me 3.5 hours to get down to the hotel I’d booked in Exmouth. I travelled entirely on A-roads, first heading towards Chippenham, then following the A350 past Melksham, Westbury etc. until I reached the A303, and went in to Devon that way. OK: not the quickest route, but a bit more interesting than the motorway.

From the hotel I had a fantastic sea view – its a shame Saturday was quite overcast compared to the Friday night – but I enjoyed my stay all the same. I had an Italian on my first night, and then went to bed to recover from the long drive.

On Saturday morning I somehow ended up doing a lot of walking. After breakfast in the morning, I walked East along the coastal park to Sandy Bay and the beach just below the caravan park there. A long, wide beach, it wasn’t too crowded – most people were between the flags but I chose a spot further along, used my coat as a mat, lay down and fell asleep. Later I paddled (the sea was too cold for me to put anything more than my foot in it) and walked along to the other end of the beach and back.

When I returned back along the coastal path – about an hour – I jumped in the car and set the sat nav for Sidmouth. Once parked I walked in to the town centre and went in search of refreshments: I settled on a cream tea in a café near the sea front. After my cream tea, I went for another walk on the coastal path. The path heading East out of Sidmouth goes up hill to the top of the cliffs. It took me 45 minutes to walk up to the top to a viewpoint up there – and 10 minutes to come back down!

I recovered from my walk with an ice cream once back in town, before returning to the car to make my way to my next stop. I went in to Exeter, to visit my Aunt who lives near the City Centre. When I arrived I phoned to ask a) which her house was and b) where the best place to park was – she walked out the door of the house right in front of me.

As the afternoon turned in to evening I drove out to Exeter Airport to pick my sister up, she was returning from Guernsey after spending a week in the Channel Islands. We drove back to my hotel, where I needed a rest after all that walking!

In the evening we ate at the El Olivo Meze and Tapas bar in Exmouth Town Centre, as I’d walked past it the previous night and thought it looked interesting. We had 5 dishes to share between us, plus drinks.

Sunday morning was an early start – we checked out of the hotel before breakfast and headed in to the town centre to find somewhere to eat. It was early but one place was open, so we ate there. A full English for 2 – while sitting in the main square. We walkes back to the car along the beach and left Exmouth just after 9…and within 2 hours we were safely back in Gloucestershire.

On Wednesday I’m off again – this time to the Greek island of Skopelos, for my annual 2 week holiday in Greece.

Good night.


Fred Hart

Stock Controller and Radio Presenter/Producer

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