Devon is one of the most popular holiday locations in the UK and with so much on offer, it is easy to see why. Even if you only come for a Devon cream tea or some famous Devonshire ice cream, the sunshine, coastline and countryside are bound to win you over.
If you have never been to Devon before, you are in for a real treat. A weekend break is the perfect amount of time to enjoy some time in the South West and if you take the train, it is a lovely countryside route from any direction.
Also known as the English Riviera, Torbay, with Paignton at its heart, is very special with sandy beaches as well as rock pools and gently lapping waves. It is a great place for young families to holiday together without spending a fortune or going on a plane, but it is also ideal for older people looking to relax over the summer season.
So, what will you get up to this weekend? Here are a few ideas to have a weekend of fun in Paignton:
Though many people tend to stay in Exeter, there are also some Holiday Apartments available in Paignton to take you out of the city hustle and bustle and 2 minutes away from the beach. Paignton is a small town just south of Exeter and is easy to get to on the train. The route goes along the coast, going over bridges and winding around curves in the landscape, and is one of the most picturesque in the country.
The town itself is a lovely little resort with plenty of cafes and pubs to sit in as well as other things to do that the whole family will enjoy. There are wildlife and nature reserves as well as Paignton Zoo, there are also theatres, museums and galleries for culture vultures and parks and gardens to enjoy as well.
Here are a few of the highlights:
A great day out for everyone, Paignton Zoo is home to all kinds of animals from brightly coloured tropical birds such as Swainson’s Lorikeets and bright pink flamingos to Asiatic lions, elephants and giraffes. The zoo is dedicated to educating people about animals and their care as well as joining in with conservations efforts being made around the world.
Kids will love coming to the zoo and young families can make a day of it with the cafe and gift shop. But the zoo isn’t just for kids – adults can also come and marvel at the wonders of nature and the park is accessible to all.
The Paignton Regatta
Each year, Paignton hosts the Paignton Regatta, a week-long series of free family events to tie in with the Torbay sailing regatta. This year, from 4th August to 12th August, there will be plenty of fun and games to go around. From the live music available all day to the Beat the Tide competition, there is a lot to see and do.
At this time of year, Paignton really comes to life so it is worth getting your bookings in early to stay over that week. Lots of people come to the town from the surrounding area so it will get much busier than normal. All this innocent fun is really what holidays in Paignton are all about.
On a hot summer’s day in Devon, when you are too hot to do anything of much use, Young’s park is the perfect place to go. Model boat enthusiasts often gather at the Boating Lake, there’s a crazy golf course and the Rock Walk Gardens are the perfect place to meander – especially when they are lit up at dusk.
The park is ideal for a lazy day with the kids too. There is space for a picnic and games and even the family dog is welcome to join in with the fun.
If you are looking for a more active weekend, Reach Outdoors could be just the thing for you with abseiling, rock climbing and adventures on offer. The centre provides guided tours as well as lessons on coasteering, kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding.
With their fully qualified instructors, this is a great way to get outside and see Paignton and the surrounding coastline form a completely different viewpoint. They will go at your pace so you won’t be waiting around or catching up either!
Where to Eat?
Paignton is full of great cafes and pubs that will suit everyone. A good place to start is The View at Goodrington which is very relaxed, comes with a fabulous view and offers all sorts of delicious meals including takeaway pizza. If you are looking for somewhere to get a bite after spending all day at the beach, this is the place for you.
But Paignton also offers some fantastic fish restaurants and the Harbour Light Restaurant is the place to go. Right on the edge of the water in Paignton Harbour, the restaurant also offers some lovely views as well as a varied menu. But the thing that truly sets it apart is the fact that all the dishes are made with locally sourced ingredients for the best flavours.
If you are looking for something a bit fancy, the Sky Bar and Bistro might be just what you are looking for. Only opening on Fridays and Saturdays, this little bar in the heart of Paignton fills up fast so you really should book. The food is simply fantastic (and you can see why they are often asked to cater for celebrities and even members of the royal family!) but they also offer some gorgeous cocktails to go with.
If you have never been to Paignton before, you are in for a real treat. You can easily fill a weekend with fun things to do but you could just as easily spend a few restorative days lying on the beach before finding somewhere delicious to dine. As this summer is set to be a hot one, now might just be the time to discover the English Riviera and book your holiday apartment in Paignton today.