This walk starts from the Gallery Lodges. Cross the main road, walk up West Meadow Road, turn right at the top and look for the alley on the left. Left at the top of the alley and you are on the path. Free maps at the Gallery Lodges so you don’t get lost.
Views looking back to Braunton, the estuary and Great Field as you climb the lane.
Views from the hill top over the other side to Croyde, Putsborough and Woolacombe.
Views over Croyde Bay and Lovely descent through the woods into Croyde
Head down into Croyde through the lanes. Stop off in the village for refreshment.
Easy Option Catch the bus back, or better catch the bus to Croyde and do the walk backwards.
Mid option. Retrace your way back using a slightly different walk for the Croyde side.
Long Option – Walk through the central path to the beach and back round the headland to Saunton Sands Hotel and back along the beach, through the dunes and back down sandy Lane and Moor Lane to the Gallery Lodges. This can also be done by parking at Saunton below saunton Sands Hotel or on the laybys and starting the walk from there making for a mid size walk.
Take a short trip to the Braunton Burrows when you stay at The Gallery Lodges.
We have free maps of this area in the lodges so you can explore it all.
One of the largest sand dune areas in Europe and a Unesco Biosphere reserve, its really worth a visit.
You can walk, cycle or drive to the start where there is a reasonably priced car park, about 1.5 miles away.
Take a walk from the car park and walk to a deserted stretch of saunton sands beach or do a loop to Crow Point. On the way – wild flowers, water slacks, WW2 relics from the DDay landings and the odd real life army excersize.
The area is home to a large number of resident and migratory birds along with the estuary. It is a superb place to bird-spot and hear the plethora of bird song. Throughout the seasons you will see all the different migratory birds as they pass through. Many of the birds you can also see at The Gallery Lodges as they feed in the meadows marshland and woodland which surround the lodges which encompasses 2 SSSI reserves. As if this wasn’t enough of Birds and wild flowers there is also the Braunton Marshes wetland system which adjoins the estuary and inlet to Braunton. More, there is more still, but that’s another blogg page.
At Last the beach and you can see there is no one here usually. Cycle to Saunton Sands Hotel from here for coffee and then back to The Gallery Lodges along the road.Go the other way round Crow point, but the sand gets a bit hard going. Possible but hard work…..could be worth it though!
Looking out to sea from the Dunes on the way back to the car park or walk up to Saunton Sands Hotel and catch the bus back to The Gallery Lodges .
You can start the Tarka Trail straight from the door of The Gallery Lodges. Cycling is really beautiful in the area around the new luxury lodges at Braunton near to Saunton. If you come to visit then do bring your bike. Free maps at the lodges for all the cycle routes in the area.
The most famous route is the tarka trail which you can start right from the door. The Tarka trail proper starts 1.4 miles from the Lodges but the best bit of the trail is the trail before you get there. If you take the back route to the Tark trail it is about 3 miles through the back lanes (very scenic) or the quick way through Braunton which is shorter but less scenic.
From the gates to the entrance of Pete Caswell’s Art studio where you will set off from, you cycle down Moor Lane where you approach the dunes through quiet country lanes with Wheat and Barley fields surrounding. Before you have even turned a pedal you pass on the right two SSSI reserves of ancient woodland and a special wetland habitat, Swan Pool.
Asparagus and market gardening dot the landscape and the sea air is bright and fresh. Dave the local farmer, opposite the Lodge’s entrance farms the asparagus and much of the amazing crops you see growing. At the bottom of Moor Lane hang a left onto Sandy Lane and head along more fields of asparagus and cauliflower with views of the dunes to the right. Depending on the time of year you might get treated to poppies and wild flowers in the fields or Daffodils which line the hedges from when this area was a major daffodil growing land.
The Braunton Burrows biosphere through which you cycle is a very special area of rare dune habitats and wet lands, profuse with wild flowers, orchids and many migrating wild birds. So on the way to the Tarka trail you might just want to stop off here. ( see later guide on this as this forms another bike trip or walk in itself)
Take the next left and the scenery changes again into wetlands and marshes which is Braunton Marshes, part of the Biosphere which also has Europe’s biggest sand dune reserve. Swans, rare birds, yellow irises can often be seen.
Keep going along this road. Look out to the right and you will see the toll road off to Crow point, another cycle ride for later on ( keep going straight on for the Tark trail). At the end of the road you come to a roundabout. To your right you see the Tarka trail which will take you to Barnstaple past the pub on the estuary and a lovely garden centre. From Barnstaple you can travel onto Northam and Bideford and Appledore. At certain times of year there is a ferry from Northam to Appledore which can add a fun dimension to your trip.
If you go left at this island you can go to the local Tescos, which makes this probably the most scenic trip to Tescos you can find.
We have free maps in the Lodges of the Tarka Trail and the local area for cycling, walking and exploring.
The Tarka trail will take you from Barnstaple onto Bideford and then onto Torrington and Meethif you are super fit.
Bikes can be hired in Braunton & Barnstaple.
From Braunton a cycle trail heads North also but its not a great trip so see my guide on cycling to Wolacombe and Morte Hoe later on.
About 2.5 miles by car from the Luxury Gallery Lodges at Braunton is the famous beach at Croyde. From the Gallery Lodges drive up the B3231 passing Saunton Sands Golf club, then past the Saunton Sands Hotel. Then just as you pass the Hotel, wow
what a vista as Saunton Sands beach, dunes and surf opens up on the left with views all the way to Instow and Appledore.
Croyde beach – Beautiful unspoilt beach with and dunes
Stunning headland walks around Baggy Point.
World class A Frame wave can be tricky and fast at Croyde. Surf is popular with surfers year round. Don’t forget to stop just past Saunton Sands hotel to check ho the surf at Saunton is working before checking out Croyde. Tides and swells work very differently at these two beaches.
Saunton beach is 1.8 miles by car from the Lodges at Braunton. There is an amazing view of this beach from the main road to Croyde. Nearby is Saunton Sands Hotel and Saunton sands Gof Club.
Try out Pete Caswell’s Luxury Lodges at Braunton which you can stay in near to Saunton Sands Beach. These Lodges are beautiful and more like a luxury Hotel suite teleported into a wild flower meadow than anything else. Check them out The Gallery Lodges
Its a stunning beach with big vistas and big skies. Its great for a cycle ride. There are many great bike rides here, bring your bikes for coastal cycling.
Backed by the largest dune system in Europe, The Braunton UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Walks along the beach, through the dunes and to the estuary.
Amazing reflections on the sand
Great long boarders beach of world class standard with a mellow peeling wave. Bring a board or hire one at Saunton Sands.
Gig racing at the popular Saunton Sands beach.
See Pete Caswell’s paintings of Saunton Sands beach on his website