Things to do near Fingals
Below you will find a selection of things to do locally.
Fingals is a mile away from Dittisham, a beautiful village sited on the edge of the river Dart. As well as the many popular tourist spots right on our doorstep; Agatha Christie's recently restored summer house and gardens are just across the river, there are many delights a short drive away including the renowned Devon beaches and Dartmoor National Park. Below we have listed a selection of some of our favourite things to do locally.
Courses at Coombe
Right next door is Coombe Farm Studios, a centre dedicated to growing creativity, Coombe runs courses in painting, printmaking and ceramics as well as a regular drop in yoga class on Tuesdays open to all. Stay in the comfort of Fingals whilst joining a Coombe course for a week or a long weekend.
This is a new one!
This is something I never thought I would recommend - but it is GREAT! I can't speak highly enough of the team out at Dunkeswell for a superb afternoon learning how to sky dive. Maybe not for the faint hearted - but go on - I dare you!
Dartington Hall and Gardens
Such a lovely place to spend a few hours. These stunning, Grade 2*Listed gardens are a delight and a lovely place to find a little peace and serenity in our hectic world. The White Hart or Roundhouse Cafe are delightful spots for drinks or coffee and some of the buildings date from medieal times -listed structures range from Bronze Age walls, to a medieval hall, to Arts & Crafts and International Modernist homes.
For all lovers of fine wines and cheese - or just great views! Sharpham Estate offers all these - tours of the vineyard, fabulous food in the Cafe and panoramic views of the river right up to Totnes. A great place for picnic provisions or for gastronomic souvenirs!
Slapton Ley is the largest natural lake in south-west England. Separated from the sea by just a narrow shingle bar, it is entirely freshwater and is surrounded by reedbeds, marshes and woodland habitats. A great circular walk takes you part way round and then through Slapton village - stop at The Tower Inn for a pint on your way back!
South West Coast Path
We entirely agree with the Lonely Planet when they say that the South West Coast Path is one of the top walks to be found anywhere in the word! There are 630 miles in total but you could do just a bit - a gentle stroll or a strenuous hike to a deserted cove. The heritage, wildlife, geology and scenery along the way are truly inspirational and every day walking it brings stunning new experiences.
Start Point Lighthouse
50° 13'.344 N 003° 38'.539 W. Start Point is one of the most exposed peninsulas on the English Coast, running sharply almost a mile into the sea on the South side of Start Bay near Dartmouth. The Lighthouse, sited at the very end of the headland, has guided vessels in passage along the English Channel for over 150 years and you can take a tour - well worth the climb for the view from the top!
Paddle your own canoe - up to 12 of you in one boat! Terrific fun - you can choose from a riverside ice cream halt, a picnic, build a campfire, dine ashore, a winery visit, or cook up a riverbank barbecue. By day and by night, sunshine and moonlight.
The Henry Finlay
The 'Henry Finlay', a thirty-five foot, self-righting sailing and rowing lifeboat was built for the R.N.L.I. at the Thames Ironworks and Shipbuilding Company yard on the Thames at Blackwall in 1911 with the official number 618.
A fine sight and just one of several historic vessels offering trips on the Dart.
Mattiscombe Sands is reached by walking through fields from the Start Point Lighthouse car park or along the South West Coast Path. No fussy facilities of any description and only accessible for those who like a challenge, it is just a wonderful place to find peace and quiet.
KEEP CALM AND SAIL ON
The 'Fairmile' was built by Southampton Steam Joinery Ltd in 1941 and commissioned as RML497 in July 1942.
Bought and restored in 2009 by Greenway Ferry, the 'Fairmile' now operates a summer service between Torquay, Brixham and Dartmouth - with a cruise to the Exercise Tiger coast around Slapton Sands.
Lannacombe is one of our favourite bathing and picnic spots. A tiny sandy cove with rocks to clamber over it really is a delight. Very limited parking keep it uncrowded - get there early - but beware, there is no beach at high tide!
Learn to sail on the river.... with qualified instructors who make boating fun.
Dittisham Boats incorporates Dittisham Sailing School, Dittisham Boat Hire and Dart Adventures and operates from the pontoon between the Anchorstone Cafe and the Ferry Boat Inn, in the village of Dittisham, just up stream from Dartmouth on the River Dart.
Welcome to Dart Adventures
Based in the pretty waterside village of Dittisham near Dartmouth, we offer outdoor activities for groups of 6 or more; friends wanting to celebrate and have some fun! Mountaineering, coasteering, bushcraft, kayaking, boating, mountain biking - all this and more - take a look here....
The Anchorstone Cafe is a great place to eat right by the riverside in Dittisham and The Picnic Boat is fun for a foodie river trip. Family run and open throughout the summer season they specialise in great seafood lunches including crab, lobster, mussels, and oysters.
Blackpool Sands, set in a sheltered bay surrounded by evergreens and pines is one of South Devon's most beautiful natural treasures. An award-winning privately managed family beach with turquoise blue sea giving it an almost Mediterranean feel. A shingle beach, as are all the main beaches in Start Bay and all incorporating 'Sands' as a historical name, located only 3 miles West of Dartmouth on the beautiful South Devon heritage coast.
Greenway House and Gardens
This is an extraordinary glimpse into the private holiday home of the famous and much-loved author Agatha Christie and her family. The relaxed and atmospheric house is set in the 1950s, and contains many of the family's collections, including archaeology, Tunbridgeware, silver, botanical china and books. Outside you can explore the large and romantic woodland garden, with a restored vinery and peach house, wild edges and rare plantings, which drifts down the hillside towards the sparkling Dart estuary.
Coleton Fishacre is a spectacular house and garden designed by Milne (a disciple of Lutyens) in 1925 for Rupert and Lady Dorothy D'Oyly Carte (of Gilbert and Sullivan fame). The house reflects the Arts and Crafts tradition yet has refreshingly modern interiors...
Berry Pomeroy Castle
Tucked away in a deep wooded valley, Berry Pomeroy Castle is the perfect romantic ruin.
Within the 15th-century defences of the Pomeroy family castle still displaying a wall painting of the Three Kings in its gatehouse chamber, looms the dramatic ruined shell of its successor, the great Elizabethan mansion of the Seymours. Begun in c.1560 and ambitiously enlarged from c.1600, their mansion was intended to become the most spectacular house in Devon, a match for Longleat and Audley End. Never completed, and abandoned by 1700, it became the focus of blood-curdling ghost stories, recounted in the audio tour.