Weston Mouth Circular

Mar 18, 2024 | Featured Articles, Strenuous, Walks


Starts/Finishes: Donkey Sanctuary Car Park, EX10 0NU

Time: 1 – 1.5 hours

Distance: 2.5 miles

Difficulty: Moderate/Strenuous

Terrain: Coastal footpath, steep steps, grassy paths slippery when muddy

Parking: Free

Weston Mouth Circular

Mar 18, 2024 | Featured Articles, Strenuous, Walks

This route showcases so much of what we love about Devon. Stunning coastal views, pockets of woodland opening into rolling meadows, historic sites, pebbly beaches and wildlife in abundance – plus a chance to get up close and personal with the Donkey Sanctuary donkeys!

From the Donkey Sanctuary car park, (1) head south – parallel to Dunscombe Lane – to the paddock where you can bid good morning to these calm, fuzzy friends.

Continue along this path, passing the second paddock, before turning right (2) and crossing the road diagonally into the field, to continue travelling south parallel to the lane (now on your left). Follow this grass path around the 90 degree bend and then look to exit at the next corner onto the lane by turning left. (3) 

(4) After 100 yards, turn right down the lane signposted to coast path. Follow this to a crossroad track, (5) and turn left down the footpath.

At the next junction, (6) take the path to the left and watch as the coastline opens up in front of you. The path rolls up and down over the hills and mounds, and there are some fantastic look out points and benches to just sit and soak it all in.

Keep following the coast path, (7) as it enters into woodland and takes you steeply down a number of steps towards Weston Mouth beach.

(8) As you near the bottom, take an optional detour on the right to loop around the recently restored Weston Plats. What was once a thriving market garden, strategically placed facing south to soak up the sun and cut into the hillside to protect from wind and frost, is today a unique wildlife haven, unearthed from the scrub that kept them hidden for years. Learn about how donkeys helped carry seaweed up from the beach to use as fertiliser, and the crops grown here which were sold as far afield as London – including the infamous Branscombe Spuds!

If you fancy, you can take the path down onto the beach and see the waterfall splashing down from the combe carves passage. (9) Otherwise, take the path going inland and follow along the edge of the fields and into the woodland.

(10) At the next waymarker, take the right fork and follow this path uphill as it eventually turns into a track. This will lead you back to the Donkey Sanctuary, which you’ll see signposted on your left.

Treat yourself to a bite to eat at The Kitchen, open seven days a week, where you can refuel and admire your route travelled. It’s good food doing a good deed, with every penny of profit going back into the Sanctuary’s charity work.

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