Pilgrim of Brixham sailing South Devon Short Break
Pilgrim of Brixham sailing South Devon Short Break

Devon Short Break – Classic Sailing Experience:

Get away from it all onboard a relaxing Devon Short Break Cruise.

During  this 3 day Devon short break cruise you will have the opportunity to enjoy the very best that the South Devon coastline has to offer.

It is a great way to see familiar places like Torbay, Dartmouth and Salcombe from a completely new perspective.

This is so much more than a boat trip and you will be able to get stuck in and experience at first hand the breathtaking beauty of traditional heritage vessel sailing.

All your freshly prepared meals, snacks and hot and cold drinks are included and our Skipper and Crew will be onhand to make sure that you have a great time!

What to Expect on your Devon Short Break:

Leaving from Brixham which is home port to Pilgrim BM45, you will find Pilgrim moored on the Town Pontoon close to where she was originally built by the Uphams Shipyard in 1895.

No two short break sails are exactly the same. However, a typical Devon Short Break will take us around Berry Head towards Dartmouth, Slapton Sands and Salcombe, visiting picturesque anchorage points and places of interest along the way.

You will be welcomed aboard with refreshments before the usual safety briefings and boat tour to allow you to settle in and find your way around. Once everyone is ready we will set sail and the adventure begins!

Points of Interest during your Devon Short Break Sailing Experience:

As we leave Brixham,be sure to look back at the picture postcard fishing port with pretty colour-washed fishermens cottages rising up around the old harbour. You will also see other heritage vessels and classic sailing boats as well as fishing trawlers in and around the busy harbour.  Pilgrim sets sail around Berry Head. This dramatic limestone headland is designated as an area of outstanding natural beauty. It is home to a sea bird colony of guillemots, black legged kittiwakes. Kestrels and gulls also make it their home.  We are often accompanied by dolphins or porpoises here, so make sure you are up on deck with your camera to get some great shots of the amazing sea life.

Sailing past Berry Head, look for the lighthouse built in 1906 which has the distinction of being the smallest,deepest lighthouse placed at the highest geographical point in the British Isles. Its white light can be seen for 14 nautical miles. Berry Head is also the site of a Napoleonic Fort built between 1794 and 1804.  These fortifications were designed to protect Torbay from the French in the days when Torbay was considered a strategic naval anchorage!

Enjoy the seascape and dramatic coastal scenery with interesting rock formations creating rugged limestone cliffs, sandy bays, coasta­­­l coves and inlets.  We sail past St Marys Bay, a popular caravan holiday destination, the dramatic headland of Sharkham Point and then, hidden from view, the National Trust property of Coleton Fishacre, once the home of the Doyle Cart family.

A ‘Day Mark’ built in 1864 on the eastern side of the estuary helps us identity the River Dart.  We then pass the Mewstone rock just outside the mouth of the river.  This is often another spot to see the occasional harbour porpoise, common grey seal as well as cormorants, guillemots, gannets and sea gulls. Dependant on the weather this is often our overnight port.

As we raise the anchor and sail on, the famous Slapton Sands stretch for 2 miles ahead. In 1944 this was the scene of the infamous Exercise Tiger, involving 30,000 troops, a D Day rehearsal that went badly wrong.  A combination of an attack by German E-boats and miss timed friendly fire resulted in the loss of 946 men.

Slapton Ley National Nature Reserve sits behind Slapton Sands and is the largest freshwater lake in the South West and home to both native and migrating birds.

Next on the map is Torcross  which was badly damaged 2014 by high tides and gales resulting in many homes being evacuated.

Between Dartmouth and Kingsbridge lies Start Point where many historical shipwrecks have been recorded on the reefs and rocks around this dramatic headland. The Start Point lighthouse was built in 1836 to warn ships off Start Point. It is 92 feet high and its warning light  flashes every 5 seconds. If you revisit on land, the lighthouse is open to the public with guided tours between Easter and October showing the life of a traditional lighthouse keeper.

Salcombe is the furthest point we can comfortably reach on a short break sail and is a beautiful harbour set in a stunning natural environment designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It has become a very popular weekend destination for sailors and visitors alike looking to get away from it all! Despite becoming a vibrant, busy little town, Salcombe still manages to retain its unique Devon charm!

Salcombe’s history is intrinsically linked with the sea. Until about 100 years ago the people of Salcombe earned their living solely from the estuary and the sea. Fishing, seafaring, boat and later shipbuilding were the main occupations, but smuggling and even piracy meant that settlements were not built at the water’s edge but further inland to keep their location a secret.

Weather- Wind and Tides!

This is the part of your sailing trip that unfortunately we unable to control! As a result we cannot guarantee that all destinations/experiences referred to in this description will be exactly as stated, however we will always do our upmost to deliver a great experience.

This Devon Short Break Sail has always been popular and promises to leave you with some amazing memories to share when you are back on land!

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Additional information

Embark/Disembark LocationBrixham – Town Pontoon
Embark/Disembark DateFri 14th – Sun 16th Apr: Sat 22nd – Mon 24th Apr: Fri 18th – Sun 20th Aug(this trip will showcase local produce suppers) : Fri 15th – Sun 17th Sep:
Embark/Disembark Time14-00 – 12-00 (noon)
Max number of guests10-12
DestinationSouth Devon Coasts and Harbours
What's Included√ All onboard refreshments/meals √ Use of onboard safety kit √ Berthing, mooring & fuel costs √ 2 nts. onboard accommodation √ Bunk linen (towels by request)
What's Not Included× Wet weather clothing × Travel Insurance × Alcoholic drinks × Car park fees at home port × Cost of on-land transport/meals × Towels for swimming use × Joining or onward travel costs
Brixham Breakwater lighthouse
Below decks Pilgrim is pretty special
Pilgrim of Brixham South Devon Sailing Short Break
Ready to leave from the pontoon

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