Brixham on a budget

  • Coastal walks providing fabulous sea views
  • Boat watching from the Breakwater
  • Free swimming at the open air seawater pool
  • Visit the Battery Gardens Heritage Centre and Berry Head Nature Reserve

Often cited as the most popular activity for visitors on holiday in the South West, walking is a great way to enjoy the region’s countryside and coastline. And Brixham offers woodland, coves and clifftop vistas all available for free if you know where to go.

Boat in Brixham HarbourThe focus of Brixham is the natural harbour, lined with colourful cottages and plenty of photo opportunities. Head past the newly redeveloped fish quay to the left and walk along the outer harbour to the Battery Gardens where steps lead up to views across the English Riviera to Paignton and Torquay. The Battery Gardens are home to the remains of World War II defences and the Heritage Centre where voluteers run a small museum of military memorabilia. Entrance is free though a donation to the upkeep would be welcome.

Past the Battery Gardens, the coastal path continues to Churston Woods and Cove, then further along to Elberry Cove and Broadsands Beach for the more energetic. This is part of the South West Coastal Path and offers some great views across the bay, perfectly framed by the trees and vegetation. Walking to Elberry Cove and back will take a good few hours so pack a flask for a low cost but enjoyable afternoon.

In the other direction, a level walks take you to the town’s main beach at the breakwater. There’s always boats coming and going as you walk past the marina. The mile-long breakwater sea defence is a continuation of the level walk with more chances to watch the ferries, trawlers and leisure craft. If you are lucky, you may also see seals and dolphins.

Brixham Shoalstone PoolFurther on, Brixham open air seawater swimming pool is free to use of you are lucky with the weather and is manned by lifeguards in the summer.

Finally, and for the cost of the car park, Berry Head Nature Reserve is worth visting for the sweeping coastal views both across the English Riviera and towards Man Sands and Dartmouth in the other direction. Home to a Napoleonic Fort and varied and interesting wildlife, the site is run and preserved by the Torbay Coast and Countryside Trust.