THINGS TO DO & PLACES TO VISIT
Without stepping into your car, just next to Summerhill is the lovely Young’s Park with its boating lake, board walk and relaxing green leading to the beach. Beautiful cliff walk to wander up and down or simply relax and gaze at the sea from one of its many benches. At the end of the promenade you can simply carry on to the South West Coastal path and walk to Brixham with lovely views of the sea. Or jump on the steam train from the park and visit Dartmouth.
From the beach you can try kayaking, coasteering, water skiing or simply explore the rock pools
Or wander over the cliff walk to Paignton harbour where you can get on one of the numerous boating trips or just sit and watch the harbour activities.
There is a bus outside the hotel which will take you along Paignton seafront, town centre past the zoo and onto Stoke Gabriel .The village of Stoke Gabriel nestles in South Devon, and is situated on a creek of the historic River Dart. This ancient and unspoilt village still retains its ancient roots from the 800 year old yew tree in the churchyard to its gentle tangle of cottages leading down to the river where locals have fished for Dart Salmon for centuries. With its old Inn and the hubbub of daily life, it still retains that quintessential English village atmosphere.
Greenway Agatha Christie’s House
Agatha Christie described Greenway as "the loveliest place in the world". It was here that she had her holiday home, on the banks of the River Dart. With a long history dating back to the 1490s, the house still retains features added by all generations of occupying families. Now managed by the National Trust, the property offers visitors an extraordinary glimpse into the private life of the Queen of Crime and her family.
Coleton Fishacre – A luxuriant garden by the sea
Travel back in time to the Jazz Age at the country home of the D'Oyly Carte family.
You can lose yourself in the magical 12-hectare (30-acre) garden: viewpoints give enticing glimpses out to sea, paths weave through glades past tranquil ponds, and tender plants from the Mediterranean, South Africa and New Zealand thrive in the moist and sheltered valley.
This most evocative of country homes, built in the Arts & Crafts style, is imbued with 1920s' elegance. A light, joyful atmosphere fills the rooms and music plays, echoing the family's Gilbert and Sullivan connections.
Berry Head National Nature Reserve
This stunning headland, with its iconic lighthouse and Napoleonic Fort, is surrounded by water on three sides and offers exceptional views across Torbay and beyond. You can enjoy some superb coastal walks, spot wildlife on land and at sea.
With over 2,500 animals across 80 acres – you’re in for a really wild time at Paignton Zoo.
Paignton Zoo is one of the South West's most exciting visitor attractions. It’s a place to roam, discover and get in touch with your inner animal.
Get up close to some of the animal wonders of the world across our specially designed habitats - from the savannah to the wetlands and the tropical forest. Run wild in our play areas or hop aboard our unique Jungle Express train to get even closer to the action.
Cockington Country Park is a beautiful mix of picturesque well-ordered garden landscapes, open parkland, rural countryside and substantial woodland. Tucked in amongst this 450 acre park are three pretty ornamental lakes, a historic Manor House with craft centre and studios, a chocolate box village, delightful thatched cottages and a quaint church.
All can be explored through a network of paths and bridleways, both on foot or by bike.
Occombe Farm is a working farm in South Devon that is open to the public. There's no charge to come and visit us and parking is free, so come and wander around the farm and explore our fantastic 2km nature trail, bustling with wildlife and beautiful views of the surrounding woodland.
This grand Victorian building, within a short walking distance of Torquay harbour, houses an impressive collection of artefacts including the Quaternary Cave Collections and Archive for which it received the Designated Outstanding Collection status.
Highlights not to miss include the human jawbone, the oldest fragment of modern human in Europe discovered through cave archaeology at nearby Kent’s Cavern and the Explorers and Ancient Egyptian gallery with over 400 precious artefacts including a 2,500 year old mummy boy in a sarcophagus.
UNESCO Global Geopark
Did you know that the English Riviera, Devon has been accredited by UNESCO as a Global Geopark, just one of seven in the UK and 140 worldwide to celebrate our incredible geology, landscape and heritage? It is incredible to think that ‘our’ rocks were formed millions of years ago at the bottom of a warm tropical sea and then scorched by the equatorial sun.
Discover the English Riviera GeoSites
The Global Geopark status stretches right across the whole 22-mile coastline of the English Riviera and involves many points of interest within the Bay. Our designation as a Geopark is currently based upon the international importance of 32 individual geosites covering a story of three geological time periods, all found within a compact area. Here is the current list of sites;
Babbacombe Cliffs: Marine Devonian
Barcombe Mews Quarry, Shorton
Berry Head to Sharkham Point
Black Head and Anstey’s Cove
Petitor Breakwater Quarry, Brixham
Brokenbury Quarry, Churston Ferrers
Chapel Hill, Torre
Churston Cove / Churston Point
Crystal CoveDaddyhole: Marine Devonian
Dyers Quarry: Marine
Goodrington Quarry and Road Cutting
Hollicombe Head to Corbyns Head
Hopes Nose to Wall’s Hill: Marine Devonian
Hopes Nose: Mineralogy of SW
Hopes Nose and Thatcher Rock
Hopes Nose South
Kents Cavern: Quaternary of SW
Long Quarry: Marine Devonian
Lummaton Quarry: Marine Devonian
Meadfoot Sea Rd: Marine Devonian
New Cut: Marine Devonian
Quarry Woods Quarry, Cockington
Roundham Head: Permian Triassic
Saltern Cove: Marine Devonian
Saltern Cove: Permian Triassic
Sharkham Iron Mine
Dartmoor National Park – 20 miles from Summerhill
At only 20 miles from Summerhill you will find wild, open moorlands and deep river valleys, with a rich history and rare wild life Dartmoor Nationa Park is a unique place to visit. The picturesque village of Widecombe-on-the-Moor is located within the Park as it’s Princetown the site of Dartmoor Prison.
Berry Pomeroy Castle - 5.0 miles from Summerhill
Berry Pomeroy is unusual among English castles in that its history has only recently been established. Once thought to be of Norman origin, the castle was in fact begun during the later 15th century by the Pomeroy family. Within its defences, the Seymour family built a modest early Elizabethan mansion, and from about 1600 they extended this on a palatial scale, intending to create a great house to rival Longleat or Audley End. But their overambitious project suddenly foundered for lack of funds, and by 1700 the castle was an abandoned shell.
Compton Castle – 4.3 miles from Summerhill
Compton Castle is a rare gem: a medieval fortified castle with many original features. As well as its fortifications it still boasts the old kitchen largely unchanged since the 14th century as well as a solar( a living room), subsolar ,chapel, guard rooms and Great Hall which was roofless before it was reconstructed in the 1950’s. The pretty gardens feature a rose and knot garden.
Powderham Castle – 39 miles from Summerhill
Powderham Castle is a fortified manor house situated within the parish and former manor of Powderham, within the former hundred of Exminster, Devon, about 6 miles (9.7 km) south of the city of Exeter and 1⁄4 mile (0.4 km) north-east of the village of Kenton, where the main public entrance gates are located. It is a Grade I listed building. The park and gardens are Grade II* listed in the National Register of Historic Parks and Gardens
Saltram House – 27 miles from Summerhill
Saltram House is a grade I listed George II era mansion house located in the parish of Plympton, near Plymouth in Devon, England. It was deemed by the architectural critic Pevsner to be "the most impressive country house in Devon". The house was designed by the architect Robert Adam, who altered and greatly expanded the original Tudor house on two occasions.
Buckfast Abbey – 13 miles from Summerhill
Buckfast Abbey forms part of an active Benedictine monastery at Buckfast, near Buckfastleigh, Devon, England. Buckfast first became home to an abbey in 1018. The first Benedictine abbey was followed by a Savignac (later Cistercian) abbey constructed on the site of the current abbey in 1134. The monastery was surrendered for dissolution in 1539, with the monastic buildings stripped and left as ruins, before being finally demolished. The former abbey site was used as a quarry, and later became home to a Gothic mansion house.
Nestled in a tranquil haven on the edge of Dartmoor and along the banks of the River Dart, Buckfast Abbey – the only English medieval monastery to have been restored and used again for its original purpose – offers all the ingredients for a great trip whether visiting the area on holiday or just looking for an inspiring day out. Founded in 1018, the Abbey will celebrate its millennium in 2018.
EXETER CITY – 25 miles from Summerhill
A small city that packs a big punch, Exeter is one of the most vibrant, attractive and historically interesting cities in England.
Pre-dating the arrival of the Romans in AD 50, Exeter’s history is rich and long. This is reflected in its fascinating visitor attractions including its unique Underground Passages, free Red Coat Guided Tours, magnificent Cathedral, imposing Roman wall and beautiful Quayside. Exeter is also home to the award-winning Royal Albert Memorial Museum where visitors can explore the city’s 2,000-year history under one roof!
Plymouth – 30 miles from Summerhill
Plymouth is known for its maritime heritage and historic Barbican district with narrow, cobbled streets. Sutton Harbour is home to the National Marine Aquarium, where sharks and rays glide in a deep tank. Also in the harbour are several marinas and a fish market, the Plymouth Fisheries. The Mayflower Steps are where the Pilgrim Fathers set sail for the New World in 1620.