An epic walk through open fields and the densely wooded coast path to the charming Culbone Church.
This is not a stroll – it’s a long satisfying hike! Starting at County Gate, cross the road and head towards Sugarloaf Hill through the open fields towards Yenworthy Comb. This is a circular walk so it doesn’t matter whether the walk starts with the coast path or the bridle path. Whichever way you do it – you won’t be disappointed.
It’s worth noting that there are two coast paths, one inland and one coastal – choose the coastal path.
We like to walk through Yenworthy Wood to Wheatham Comb – this is a very pretty woodland walk. At the end of this woodland walk, there is a bit [read a lot] of a steep climb to reach the bridle path to Culbone Church. Once on the Bridle Path it’s quite a straightforward walk along formed paths and some tarmac lanes at Broomstreet. It’s a delightful part of the walk, quite flat and very scenic in places.
When you arrive at St Beuno’s Church in Culbone, the first thing you notice is the wonderful peace and tranquillity there. They say it’s England’s smallest working church. It’s just lovely to park on a bench with some snacks, sandwiches and a flask of tea or coffee. We could spend hours here.
From the Church, follow the signs for the South West Coast Path, the coastal version. This is a stunningly beautiful section of the coast path. This walk takes you through one of the longest continuous stretches of coastal woodland in England.
Follow this path all the way back to Sugarloaf Hill and the signs back to County Gate. There are a few places where the original coast path has collapsed, these areas have been rerouted slightly. Here you will encouter some steep steps. It’s all very clearly marked. Top tip – don’t miss the sign for County Gate otherwise you could end up walking all the way back to Lynmouth.
Things to know …
- Approx. 4-5 hours / 14 km
- A circular walk, with plenty of options
- The overall descent/ascent is approx. 448 metres
- There are some steep slopes in a few places
- There are a couple of steep steps in 2-3 places
- Part of the South West Coast Path
- Toilets near County Gate
- Explore Culbone Church
Things we love …
- Walking through the open fields with stunning views
- The leafy stretches of woodland along the South West Coast Path
- Enjoying our sandwiches and a cup of tea in Culbone Church