back to blog

top tips when visiting Beach Cove

  • activities
  • food and drink
  • holidays
October 17, 2023 · 15 MIN READ

Discover Devon during your beach hut break at Beach Cove Coastal Retreat in Ilfracombe.

The perfect staycation for couples, take in the breathtaking views of the cove from the unique beach hut accommodation. Whether you have stayed with us before, booked a break or you are wanting to find out more about the retreat, this blog will be the perfect read for you. Think of this as a handy guide full of everything you need to know before you head off on your self-catering break. If you have any other questions about the retreat head over to the Beach Cove FAQ’s page.

jump to:

what to do before checking in?

You will be able to check into your accommodation from 4pm on the day of arrival but we recommend making a day of it and exploring the local area a little bit before you check in. Tunnels Beaches can be found in Ilfracombe, just a 6-minute drive away from the retreat and are worth a visit. This incredible beach can only be accessed through a network of hand carved tunnels that were carved in the 1820s. Now it is a popular place to visit if you want to sit back, relax, and take in the rugged scenery around the secluded beach and rock pools.

visit website

what are the top things in the area?

Beach Cove makes the perfect base for exploring North Devon. But there are so many things to see and do that it can be hard deciding what you want to add into your holiday. So, we’ve put the top things to see and do in the area below for you.

1. Watermouth Castle

5 min drive from resort

Watermouth Castle - things to do near Beach Cove

Just 5 minutes up the road from the resort is Watermouth Castle, which was designed by George Wightwick in the mid-19th century. Although there is castle in the name it is a country house that has been built to resemble a castle and is a Grade II listed building. There is plenty to see and do around the area from the toboggan run, the maze, crazy golf, gnome village, and more so you’ll be able to keep the whole family entertained.

visit website

2. Ilfracombe Sea Safari

6 min drive from resort

Ilfracombe Sea Safari - things to do near Beach Cove

Since you are on the Devon coast you should make the most of the impressive sights you can see whilst at sea. With the Ilfracombe Sea Safari you will be able to choose from a range of different boat adventures that range from 1 hour long to 6 hours. Whether you are looking for a sea safari to see the stunning coastline or a sunset safari to see some seals there is something on offer for everyone.

visit website

3. The Ilfracombe Aquarium

7 min drive from resort

The Ilfracombe Aquarium - things to do near Beach Cove

Located right by Ilfracombe Harbour is The Ilfracombe Aquarium. It’s the perfect all-weather family day out where you can look at all the local aquatic exhibits, have a bite to eat at the Pier Café and explore the gift shop. There are plenty of exhibits to discover on your way around the aquarium with up to 75 species from the Lesser Octopus, Hermit Crab and plenty more. Visiting the aquarium is the perfect addition to a day exploring Ilfracombe.

visit website

4. Keypitts Off Road Adventures

10 min drive from resort

Keypitts Off Road Adventures - things to do near Beach Cove

Add some adrenaline and adventure into your stay in Ilfracombe and try out the Keypitts Off Road Adventures. They have been running for over 20 years and have plenty on offer from quad biking, axe throwing, mini Land Rovers and 4×4 Land Rover experiences. No matter what age you are there is an activity for you at this activity centre. It’s a more unique experience to enjoy whilst you are in Devon but one that you will never forget.

visit website

5. Combe Martin Wildlife & Dinosaur Park

14 min drive from resort

Combe Martin Wildlife & Dinosaur Park - things to do near Beach Cove

Combe Martin Wildlife & Dinosaur Park is the perfect family day out. They are most known for their impressive life-sized animatronic dinosaurs that include the T-Rex, Brachiosaurus, Stegosaurus and Triceratops. As well as the dinosaurs they have plenty of other animals to discover from penguins, leopards, lions, meerkats, and wolves. You can spend the whole day exploring here with the Jungle Hut Café, Japanese Garden and play zone that are dotted around in between all the animals.

visit website

closest shops for essentials?

Each of the beach huts at Beach Cove come with fully fitted kitchenettes so you will have a hob, oven, fridge, kettle, and toaster to make the most of your self-catering break. So, it will be handy to know where the closest shops are for any essentials you may need during your stay.

where to eat out?

Although you can cook your own meals at your beach hut accommodation, it is still nice to enjoy a meal or two out during your holiday. Whether you are after some pub classics or delicious seafood the restaurants listed below will be the perfect addition to your time in North Devon.

where to eat out in Ilfracombe

1. The Hele Bay Pub

1 min walk from resort

The Hele Bay Pub is just a 1-minute drive and a 3-minute walk from the resort so it’s the perfect choice if you are looking for somewhere within walking distance. It’s a classic pub that prides themselves on having good food, good beer, and a great atmosphere. They try to locally source as many of their ingredients as they can and have a huge selection of alcohol from around the world.

visit website

2. The Lime Kiln Café 

4 min drive from resort

Ilfracombe is known for its incredible harbour so enjoy the views of it whilst you enjoy a bite to eat at The Lime Kiln Café. With a terrace that wraps around the venue you can take in the stunning views out to sea and have the best view of Verity. They pride themselves on using local ingredients and produce and create some incredible dishes with seasonal extras.

visit website

3. Giovanni & Luca

5 min drive from resort

Since opening in 2010, Giovanni & Luca has been the one and only truly authentic Italian restaurant in Ilfracombe. All the dishes they create are cooked in the old fashioned way using recipes that have been handed down over the generations. So whether you are after a delicious pizza, classic pasta dish or some locally caught seafood there is plenty to choose from here.

visit website

4. Seventy One

6 min drive from resort

You will find the Seventy One restaurant nestled in the historic Fore Street in Ilfracombe town centre. Since opening in 2003, Seventy One has built a reputation for having consistently good food. Whether you are after muscles, pork belly or hake, there is plenty to offer on the menu. Along with a range of delicious desserts.

visit website

5. The Pier Brewery Tap & Grill

7 min drive from resort

The Pier Brewery Tap & Grill is a gastropub located on The Quay right next to the pier in Ilfracombe. Offering all the pub classics from burgers to fish and chips and even delicious roast dinners on Sunday’s. It’s a great place to go for a bite to eat at lunch or an evening meal. They also have various events on throughout the year so keep an eye out for what’s on.

visit website

best beaches in the area?

You can’t not have at least one beach day whilst you are in Devon, and there are so many amazing ones to choose from along the Devon coastline. Below we have put two of our favourites that are perfect for beachside strolls, beach days and watching the sun rise or set.

Woolacombe Beach

23 min drive from resort

Woolacombe Beach - beaches near Beach Cove

Known for being one of the finest beaches in the West Country, Woolacombe Beach has won many awards and is popular with families and surfers from all over. There are three large car parks so no matter what time of year you will be able to easily find a space and enjoy a day in the area. With plenty of pubs, restaurants and shops in the village itself you can set up base on the beach and then explore all that Woolacombe has to offer.

visit website

Saunton Sands

28 min drive from resort

Saunton Sands - beaches near Beach Cove

Spread across a 3-mile stretch of golden sand is Saunton Sands beach, the perfect place to go for surfing, sunbathing or just exploring the area. It is backed by the UNESCO-protected Braunton Burrows Biosphere Reserve, and you will also find plenty of facilities in the area from places to eat and park. The beach is dog-friendly all year round with no restrictions and surfers can enjoy the long, slow waves that the tide produces.

visit website

find out more about
Beach Cove Coastal Retreat
click here
book your next
holiday to Beach Cove
search availability