Back to Homepage Map and list of sites   Site summary list  

SITE SUMMARY’S - South Devon Shore Dive sites

This list of sites is based on geographical location - running from East to West (from Seaton to Plymouth)  - The site location column on the right traces a path all the way along the South Devon Coast.

Clicking on one of the blue site names in the left hand column will take you to a detailed description of the dive site, how to get there, and the facilities available (parking, pubs, local dive centers etc).

For a simple list of all the sites without descriptions (listed in the same way as above) go to the  Map and list of sites  page - this page also shows links to the detailed descriptions

 

Haven Cliff (Finger and Thumb) - Seaton

Rocks to the East of the River Axe. Deep Fissures run away from the shore. Good for crabs and lobsters. Flatfish found in the silty bottom. Pretty location. Full site review and information + Photographs

Esplanade Reefs - Seaton

Several reefs with lots of life. Reefs  run parallel to the beach about 150m from shore. Beware of heavy boat traffic  Full site review and information + Photographs

Beer - Beer

A small but very busy fishing boat spot. Dangerous amounts of boat traffic from Easter to the Autumn so the site is best avoided. Full site review and information + Photographs

Branscombe Beach - Branscombe

Several low "Seaweed reefs" run parallel to the beach starting at about 50m from shore. The further out (upto 500m) the bigger the reefs. Long surface swims are the order of the day! The beach in is in a very pretty location and facilities are good  Full site review and information + Photographs

Sidmouth Reefs – Sidmouth

As you look out to sea Sidmouth reef is at the left hand end of the Esplanade  It is a small area just off the beach by the roundabout. Nothing of real interest - only worth diving for the practice or if you are staying in Sidmouth. (Better sites nearby!)  Full site review and information + Photographs

Chit Rocks – Sidmouth

As you look out to sea Chit Rocks are the large rocks at the right hand end of Sidmouth Esplanade nothing of real interest here - only worth diving for the practice or if you are staying in Sidmouth. (Better sites nearby!) Full site review and information + Photographs

Ladram Bay – Ladram Bay

A pretty pebble beach backing onto sheer sandstone cliffs and flanked (Just out to sea) by huge sandstone stacks. The stones change to sand and mud as you head out to sea. The reefs head out to sea from the shore. Plenty of fish life, & scallops can be found on the silt. An unusual site with good facilities on the campsite. Due to silt only worth diving after a few days of calm conditions Full site review and information + Photographs

Budleigh Beach – East end Carpark  - Budleigh Salterton

Dive 1 A dull featureless dive over the sandy bottom near the shore (Good for training dives)

Dive 2 A long swim to the reef. The reef is a great dive with lots of life including shoals of fish, edible crabs, lobsters, place & cuttlefish

Good location with easy parking and excellent facilities. The pebble beach is steep though, and longshore currents are occasionally strong. It is possible to miss the reef and swim a long way out looking for it!  Full site review and information + photographs

Otter Cove  - Budleigh Salterton

No longer accessible from land due to a landslip

Sandy Bay – Exmouth

Lovely site with good access and great facilities available at the holiday camp - A small wreck on the left hand side of the beach - A long walk but a nice reef at the right hand end of the beach   Full site review and information + photographs

Exmouth Pier or the slipway - Exmouth

A jump in off the high "pier wall" or a short surface swim from the slipway. Must be done at slack high tide and with SMB to warn boat traffic. A good dive if the visibility is OK. Worth getting a local orientation from Jurassic Coast Divers as there is the wreckage of  a car and a large overhang (like a big cave) both of which are worth finding.  Excellent facilities nearby.

Smugglers Cove – Dawlish

A spectacular beach away from the beaten track. Worth the effort required to get to the site. Full site review and information + photographs

Babbacombe Beach - Torquay

Very pretty site, Sheltered and shallow, easy access to the water, fantastic facilities! Lots of life including crustaceans & cuttlefish. full site review and information + photographs

Ansteys Cove – Torquay

Although there is a road down to the beach this is always closed and chained. To get down to the beach would involve carrying all of your kit down the cliff path (Very very steep!) and then back up again. Unless you are willing to abandon all of your kit after the dive this is a none starter unless arrangements are made for vehicular access

Meadfoot beach - Torquay

Dive 1 – slipway and shag rock

The easiest access to the water of any site! (at high tide)

Good facilities, Long surface swim but a great dive. Lots of fish, crustaceans, sponges, unusual topography – Top dive !

Dive 2 – Carpark

Easy access to the sea. Interesting topography. Must be dived at high tide.

Both sites are good night dives

Beacon Cove - Torquay

A nice dive site with several drawbacks. Access although by a ramp with no steps - is a long steep walk. Your not allowed to dive here between March and October. All of the facilities are quite a distance away by the harbour. Shame! This is a sheltered site with no other divers – Powered golf trolley anyone?

Fairy cove - Paignton

Fairly easy access. Well-sheltered site. Remote chances of finding treasure (or at least a lump of metal) as 3 ships have been wrecked here! Good facilities but due to reduced visibility only worth diving after a few days of calm conditions.  Full site review and information + Photographs

Fishcombe - Brixham

Easy access and a well-sheltered site. Reasonable facilities. Fair amount of sea-life including Conger Eels large crabs and lobsters. A ste loved by some and loathed by others.

Brixham Breakwater Beach (Ladybird beach) - Brixham

Fairly easy access and a well-sheltered site. Very good facilities, Sandy / Silty bottom. Fair amount of sea-life but heavily dived and fished.

Shoalstone Beach - Brixham

Fairly easy access across rocks. Reasonable facilities. Currents can be strong offshore.

Dartmouth Castle - Dartmouth

Fantastic setting. Possible to come across canon, amunition (Canon balls, shot etc) and peices of the chain that used to span the river to sop invading ships. Visability can be very good

Blackpool Sands

Fantastic faclities in a very nice setting - the dives are not great though. The main interest is the sunken forrest to the left of the beach as you look out to sea

Monument Reef ( off the carpark at the center of Slapton Ley)

The reef is so far out from the shore that this is not really practical as a shore dive

Limpet Rocks  - Torcross

This is a commercial fishery. The site is teeming with life but the bottom is netted and there is a great danger of entanglement. There is a great deal of animosity between divers and local fishermen that leads to conflicts which have become physical in the past. The site is better avoided during the Summer - Dive Hallsands just around the corner.

Hallsands - Hallsands

The site is teeming with life. A good site in a nice setting. Avoid Limpet Rocks just around the corner as it  is a commercial fishery.

Great Mattiscombe Sands

Park in the Start Point car park at the lighthouse and follow the footpath to the right (i.e. west). This leads down to the beach at the bottom. Seals are very common here.

Landing Cove Start Point

Hope Cove  - Outer Hope

Great dive, well sheltered site. Lots of life, Sandy gullies and vibrant reefs. Occasional finds of coins from long lost wrecks. Well worth a visit as even the journey to the site is lovely  Full site review and information + photographs

Thurlestone - Wreck of the Louis Sheid

Probably the best wreck dive that can be done from the shore in Devon

Wembury Bay - Plymouth

A lovely bay with lots of interesting sea life. There is a marine center, coastal walks,  a church and a cafe near the beach. Full site review and information + photographs

Heybrook Bay   - Plymouth

Nice site but difficult access down a steep and rocky path / stream

Renney Rocks  - Plymouth

Just a short walk from Heybrook bay but access is still difficult over the rocks

Fort Bovisand – Plymouth

MOD Site - Controlled by Royal navy  Permission is needed to dive here but this is probably the best site for training in the south of England - A pretty sheltered harbour with a wreck and good visibility Full site review and information + Photographs

Promenade Pier (Sunken) – Plymouth

The remains of a collapsed pier. Highly rated dive.

The Walls - Devils Point - Firestone Bay – Plymouth

Probably the deepest shore dive in South Devon at up to 42m! Get an orientation from a local dive center. Permission is required to dive here. Visibility is often poor. A highly rated site when the conditions are good.

 

Back to Homepage

Map and list of sites

  Site summary list