Start & Finish:
South of Woolacombe, between Putsborough Sands and Croyde Bay. Start and finish in Baggy Point Car Park (National Trust).
Enjoyable all year round, this wildflower-fringed walk is noisy with the sound of nesting seabirds in spring, when gorse bushes make the hillside blush. It's idyllic throughout summer, boisterously dramatic in winter, and in autumn many migratory birds gather here to prepare for their long journey south. Look out also for birds of prey, such as merlin and peregrine.
From the car park (near Croyde Bay), trace the signposted Coast Path west. Just past the last gaggle of houses, your dog will think all its Christmases have come at once as you pass a collection of preserved bones left from a stranded whale. Continue through a gate and past a memorial to Henry Williamson (author of Tarka the Otter), and follow the lower path to the left. You can stop at the lower headland and return the way you came, or take the steep path up to a plateau, where you'll find the famous wreck post – used years ago to rescue stricken sailors when it was too rough to launch the lifeboat.
Carry on to the highest point, have a gawp at the views across Morte Bay to Woolacombe and Morte Point, and then retrace your footsteps past the post, turning left to follow a farm track back down to the car park; look out for WWII dummy pillboxes on Croyde Hoe Farm, used by American troops training for D-day. By now you may feel like a drink, and luckily nearby Georgeham has the fantastically dog-friendly Kings Arms.
Length: 2.7 miles/4.3 kilometres