Devon's best beach shack restaurants and how to ride there
South-west based Chapeau, have picked out their favourite rides and we've picked out great beach shacks to revive yourself, post spin.
Barricane Beach Cafe
Woolacombe, North Devon
You won’t find seafood on the menu at Barricane in North Devon. Instead, it’s all about Sri Lankan curry, of which there’s a simple choice of either chicken or vegetarian. Each comes served with rice, dahl, poppadums, and sambol. They don't serve alcohol but welcome customers bringing their own drinks.
Barricane Beach Café is the perfect stop if you fancy tackling the traffic-free Tarka Trail. The trail has a north and south loop. The north loop is 119km and mixes well-used bridleways, footpaths, and tarmac sections, and is great for families with older children, riders new to gravel, and those who hate navigating.
Ride anti-clockwise from Barnstaple — you'll reach Barricane Beach Café after 85km for a well-deserved lunch.
Website: Tarka Trail
Address: Barricane Beach Café, Woolacombe Rise, Woolacombe, EX34 7AS
South Beach Café
Exmouth, South Devon
Overlooking Sandy Bay with breath-taking views of the Jurassic coastline, this relaxed and informal café offers a tempting selection of fresh and locally-sourced fish dishes.
Take on the 55 mile Nello Sportive Ride, Cancelled for 2021 due to COVID, the route is available here. It travels north from Topsham (9km from Exmouth) and loops back. Continue your ride onto Exmouth and grab a spot at the South Beach Café.
Milton Sands, South Devon
There are a fair few restaurants called The Beachhouse, this one part of the National Trust, and offers a whole range of food. In the morning, take your coffee and butty to one of the tables that overlook the stunning South Milton Sands. If you arrive for lunch, the summer menu includes fritto misto, buttery scallop and crab sandwiches. Stay late into the evening — it's open until 11pm (5pm on Sundays) and watch the sun set over Thurlestone Rock with a seafood platter to share.
From Plymouth or the edge of Dartmoor, the roads to the beach are quiet and mostly traffic free. You can pick up the National Cycle Route 28 and take a ferry, crossing Salcombe, and loop round if you want to do a big day out.
Address: The Beachhouse, South Milton, Kingsbridge, TQ7 3JY
Blackpool Sands, South Devon
In an unspoilt, sheltered bay in Dartmouth, this fully-licensed café offers a fantastic range of seafood dishes, toasties, and soups to accompany its popular grass-fed Devon burgers.
A ride through knotted woodland brings you to south Devon’s confusingly-named, pine-tree-backed Blackpool Sands (it's nowhere near Blackpool) — a crescent sweep of tiny pebbles that makes up one of the area’s cleanest stretches.
From Torquay or the edge of Dartmoor, follow the National Cycle Route 28 and peel off towards Dartmouth, then follow the coast to the Blackpool Sands.
River Exe Café
Exmouth, South Devon
One of the most scenic places to grab a drink. Several floating platforms have been lashed together to create a pontoon upon which the restaurant is based. You'll need to book a water taxi to get across.
Jump on the easy going River Exe Trail, a mostly tarmac trail, and follow the loop. If you are feeling more adventurous, test out Devon Grit, a new gravel event. There are four loops available and each begins in Exmouth.
Devon Grit Routes: Komoot