48 Hours in Devon, Part 2: On to Torquay


Click here to read “48 Hours in Devon, Part 1: Dartington Estate”.

I arrived at the city of Torquay and spent some time by the harbour before going to my hotel. It was a sunny day in mid-April and the city had just began to recover from the effects of the pandemic. The harbour was relatively quiet with just a few tourists taking pictures of the beautiful boats and yachts moored there. People were enjoying the outdoor cafes and restaurants, some of whom were still wearing masks. This is the birthplace of Agatha Christie, born here in 1890. The city has a great history of development, being labelled the ‘Seaside Metropolis’. This modern Torquay offers stonework cliffs and sandy shores running along the high cliffs of the coastline as far as Brixham and Paignton thus creating the English Riviera. But Torquay’s highlights extend beyond the lovely sea and sands. 

I arrived at the Meadfoot Bay Hotel conveniently located less than a mile from Torquay harbour and just a few minutes’ walk from Meadfoot Beach. This boutique hotel has 15 comfortable, stylish and individually themed rooms set within a Victorian villa. My room had a private terrace and a lovely large bathroom with a walk in shower as well as a traditional free-standing bath. Manager Mario welcomed me, checked me in and arranged for my luggage to be taken to my room. I was on the top floor and there is no lift. However, I found it a good exercise to climb the narrow stairs but it wouldn’t be ideal for elderly or disabled guests. The room was very airy and cosy. The hotel has gone through an extensive refurbishment programme to turn it from a guest house to a chic boutique hotel.

I dined in the hotel’s Brasserie. It’s a popular spot not only with the guests but also locals and boasts some of the best cuisine along the coast. The menu focuses on local produce and the aitress guided me through the details. To begin I ordered crisp fried red mullet with Kimchi vegetable salad, Thai basil and ginger emulsion. It tasted so good and looked very special. For the main course, I ordered a butter-roasted fillet of halibut. I also selected two sides of kale with olive oil and pine nuts plus new potatoes with lemon and parsley butter. The food was utterly delicious, mouth-watering and savoury.  As I still had space for dessert, I ordered spiced sticky carrot cake with caramelised walnuts and vanilla ice cream. I ended my dinner with mint tea. The staff were friendly, efficient and made the whole experience memorable.

The next day, after a good breakfast, I began my tour of Torquay by visiting  the site of Torre Abbey. This 12th century monastery is one of the most important historical and archaeological sites in South Devon. The abbey’s building and gardens have been turned into a magical museum and educational centre that incorporates art and creativity. Unfortunately, the medieval abbey is closed on Mondays so I didn’t get a chance to explore the interior. After a wander around the exterior of the abbey and its gardens, I headed to Torre Abbey Sands, Torquay’s main beach to breathe the fresh sea air and relax for a while.  

Next on my must-see list was the beautiful Cockington Country Park which is only a mile north of Torre Abbey. The parkland is 450 acres of rural countryside packed with pretty lakes, a Manor House, an 11th century church and a cottage village, which transported me back to medieval times as I strolled around. While in Cockington Park, I walked through a rose garden and then found myself surrounded by artisan workshops including a blacksmith, a glassmaker and a carpenter. There was also a flower shop and a selection of artistic innovative gift makers whose products, among others, could be seen displayed in the Cockington Craft Centre. 

I enjoyed my 48 hours in South Devon getting a glimpse of what the English Riviera has to offer. It is crammed with attractions including some ancient caves, beautiful beaches and picturesque landscapes.

More information

For more information about Devon and the best food and drink news, offers and events in the region visit fooddrinkdevon.co.uk.

Meadfoot Bay Hotel offers B&B (Double Room) from £130.00 per night for 2 persons. To see more of Reza’s images of Devon, go to https://www.amirinia.com/uk/.


Share Article:

Mohammad Reza Amirinia

Freelance journalist, photojournalist & travel writer

Leave a comment


Sign up to our newsletter to receive the latest travel tips on top destinations.

Join the club

Become a member to receive exclusive benefits

Our community is the heart of Silver Travel Advisor, we love nothing more than sharing ideas, inspiration, hints and tips between us.

Most Recent Articles

Explore China with our guide tailored for travellers over 50. Discover ancient wonders, vibrant cities, culinary adventures, and landscapes…
Rich in exotic wildlife, tropical forests, white-sand beaches and lost civilisations, Belize really is a diverse pocket of overlooked beauty….

Come feel the love on a Princess cruise. You’ll enjoy the MedallionClass experience others simply can’t, and it’s exclusively for everyone. Visit incredible destinations and be involved in the best experiences around each one of them.

Experience more with Princess and connect effortlessly with the world around you, spend time away with loved ones, take a moment for yourself, and fall in love with your holiday of a lifetime, every time.

With over 20 years of experience, Wendy Wu Tours has mastered the art of creating exceptional, fully inclusive tours which showcase the very best of each destination.

Each tour is led by a world-class guide, who will highlight the very best of their homeland, and includes authentic cultural experiences so you are not just seeing the sights, but truly immersing yourself in local life.

Say hello to ease at sea. Ambassador’s purpose is simple: they want to inspire every guest to experience authentic cruising, effortlessly and sustainably. Passionate about protecting our oceans and destinations, their ships comply with the highest industry emission standards and there is no single-use plastic on board.

On your voyage, you will receive the warmest of welcomes from the Ambassador community as you sail upon the friendliest ships afloat.

This is a global co-operative co-owned by local partners using real local experts and guides, which supports local communities, environments and wildlife. It offers travellers quirky places to stay, activity holidays and learning experiences. Not In The Guidebooks gets travellers off the beaten track into local culture with day experiences and longer, immersive adventures.

From wild wellness breaks in Wales to painting in Portugal, sustainable adventures in Mauritius to food safaris in Brazil, this is immersive, exciting travel.

Seabourn’s five intimate ships carry guests to the heart of great cities, exclusive yacht harbours and secluded coves around the world, while two new purpose-built expedition ships will combine exhilarating adventures in remote destinations with the sophisticated amenities of the world’s finest resorts at sea.

From the luxury of all suite accommodations to complimentary fine wines and spirits, and a no tipping policy, Seabourn exemplifies the definition of travelling well.