A long weekend escape in with some of the best swims known to man in South Devon! We have created the perfect balance of exploration and relaxation from river fed lidos in the centre of Dartmoor, mythical river pools where the east Dart meets the West Dart and sea swims through sea arches and in deserted coves.
This tour is for those looking for a relaxed and fun break – fuelled by cakes of all description, wonderful local food and good company!
Iconic Swims In South Devon Heaven!
Our swimming holidays are for all types of swimmers – the “dippers”, the head up breast-strokers and the 10k warriors, with options for all, every day. Join a like minded group for a weekend escape to invigorate the senses and re-charge the batteries.
Our saftey conscious and fully qualified guides ensure there is enough swimming and variety of swims, for all levels of swimmer (we suggest swimmers can swim 400m unaided as a minimum).
There will be splashing and dipping in the hidden Dartmoor swimming spots, and some longer, harder swims in the sea on South Devon’s gorgeous and rugged Coast, with two or more swims planned each day. We’ll take you on a journey through South Devon like no other – linking stunning sea and estuary swims and some wonderful walks along the South West Coast Path to access the swims. In short, swim heaven in Devon!
Devon Wild Swimming Holiday Itinerary
Day 1Chagford River-Fed Lido, Dartmoor's magical Sharrah Pool
Arriving into Exeter St Davids for 11am, we’ll meet you at the station and take the short transfer to the quaint village of Chagford. Chagford is home to a river-fed, open air Lido which we visit for a relaxing late morning swim – and perhaps a few lengths before lunch. In the afternoon we head into the heart of Dartmoor to the tucked away Sharrah Pool. Sharrah Pool is only accessible by foot – a beautiful 2 mile walk through the National Park to discover its location! This otherworldly spot, surrounded by woodland, is a gem of Dartmoor and an incredible swimming experience. The late afternoon sees us transfer south toward the South Hams and your accommodation for the evening.
Day 2Tinside Sea Swimmers and Lido, Cremyll and Cawsands
We head out for a refreshing early morning sea swim with the friendly Tinside outdoor swimming club! We’ll always stick around for a warm cuppa and a chat with the local swimmers to find out more about their sea swimming adventures before taking the ferry over to Cremyll (and Cornwall) for our coastal walk. In poor weather (or if you prefer!) the Tinside Lido is well worth a visit – overlooking the sea it is consistently voted in the top 10 of Europe’s outdoor pools! After a glorious afternoon sea swim at Cawsands we head back on the ferry to your accommodation and a group dinner on the last evening.
Day 3Hope Cove and Thurlestone Rock, Burgh Island and the Bantham Swoosh
We transfer to Hope Cove for a beautiful morning swim to Thurlestone Rock – famous for its unusual natural arch, created over centuries by the waves. Experienced wild swimmers pride themselves on being able to swim through the arch, but it’s just as fun to simply float over the reef and – when the water’s clear – take in the aquatic garden of seaweed and fish below you. We lunch in a seaside café and there is the option – at low tide only – to walk to Burgh Island. When sea conditions are right there is the option to swim around Burgh Island or part of the famous Bantham Swoosh along the estuary towards the end of the day, transferring back to Exeter St Davids or Plymouth to say our farewells and help with ongoing travel.
Download Detailed Intinerary
For full information about this tour and to find out all you need to know, download your copy of the detailed itinerary by clicking the button below.
With easy rail, bus and car journeys from London, Bristol or the Midlands, arrive to the start of your trip ready to go! Immerse yourself in dramatic Dartmoor and the gentile South Coast coves and beaches, with a wide range of swims and relax in the evenings with like-minded people in some of the best pubs known to man! We’ll start your holiday straight from the train station at Exeter St David’s so just bring yourself, your swimwear, tow float, wetsuit (if you use one) some sturdy walking shoes and a sense of adventure – we’ll cover everything else.
Fully Guided, Hassle Free, Swimming Adventures
Led by our outstanding, qualified, swimming guides, we know every beach and cove, bend in the river, and most importantly cafe, local pub and restaurant! Most importantly we are students of the sea and understand where and when to swim in relation to tides and weather conditions – there are inland options each day, should the sea be too rough.
We take care of everything for you, with your accommodation pre-booked, all transfers between swims in our own vehicles, luggage transfers, lunch and dinner bookings as it will all have been taken care of for you. All you need to do is relax, immerse yourself in the journey ahead and enjoy.
Swimmers are wonderful people – fact. Our guests are “the salt of the earth”, fun and supportive, groups become like family and often enjoy each others company so much they come back again – altogether!
Meet and Greet Location
Exeter St Davids Station, Devon
Handpicked 3* Hotels and B&Bs
All Breakfasts, 1 Dinner, 1 Picnic Lunch
2 Nights Accommodation
Professional Tour Leader / Guide
Shore and On-Water Safety Support for all Swims
Transport and Transfers Throughout
All swims, walks and alternative options
Wetsuits - Strongly Recommended But Not Essential
Tow Floats - Essential
Gratuity for Guide / Tour Leader
What is the best way to get to Devon?
The best way out of London and other major cities into the heart of Devon is by train. The direct journey from London Paddington to Exeter St Davids is a direct 2 hour journey, ready for a leisurely afternoon strolling and swimming. You’ll finish your day at the sea, with the sand between your toes and feeling refreshed. You may also drive, using the station parking or similar for the duration of your trip.
Can I join this Swimming Holiday on my own, as a single traveller?
Absolutely! We bring like-minded people together on these trips, to enjoy a group atmosphere, get stuck into some great activities, water sports, hikes and to share a well-deserved meal with at the end of each day. Over 30% of our guests travel alone and swimmers are always very accommodating and welcoming. Solo guests have the option to have a room on their own or share with another guest.
Do I need to be a good swimmer to go wild swimming?
We require guests to be competent swimmers. All guests must be able to swim 400m unsupported before joining this tour. If you would like to chat to one of our team about your particular trip, fitness and activity levels and what is involved in coming on one of our tours, please get in touch and we would be happy to help
What do I need to bring on this Devon Wild Swimming Holiday?
For all our tours we will send out kit lists in plenty of time before your tour.
It’s completely up to guests what they swim in, however we recommend wetsuits in April – June as the waters are still chilly! For “skins” swimmers, we ask for evidence that they are swimming regularly in advance of the tour.
We provide brightly coloured hats for all guests
Tow-floats are mandatory, for visibility purposes
What else do I need to bring?
We highly recommend bringing warm clothes – Dry robe / dressing gown etc – for after you have swum
Hats / warm shoes are also highly recommended
Beach shoes – such as crocs are required although flip flops are not recommended (to flimsy on rocky beaches)
Walking shoes / a strong pair of trainers are required as there are walks of up to 2 miles to access the more remote swimming locations
A walking jacket / trousers, should the weather be inclement
Relaxed evening attire – nothing smart needed!
Can I bring a non-swimming guest?
Non-swimmers are actively encouraged and play a full part in the tours. They will be able to walk to all the swims and be part of all of the group activities. They will not be able to travel in support boats or craft however. Please contact us prior to booking if you would like to bring a non-swimming guest.