© Gary Holpin Photography 2019 | Honiton, Devon

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Hope Cove & Thurlestone

To the west of Salcombe are the small coastal communities of Hope Cove and Thurlestone, situated at the eastern end of Bigbury Bay and within the South Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, which stretches all the way from Brixham in the east, to just south of Plymouth in the west.

Hope Cove itself is made up of the communities of Inner Hope and Outer Hope, boasts two fine sandy beaches, and is famous for being the only place in England where sailors of the Spanish Armada landed after an Armada ship grounded on Shippen Rock in 1588. The survivors were brought ashore before being ransomed and sent back to Spain.

Nearby Thurlestone takes its name from the impressive rock arch which is situated just off the beach. The village dates back to the Domesday Book, and the main street still shows some of its long history with a number of fine 17th-century traditional cobb built cottages. In the 18th century Thurlestone was a centre for smuggling, at a time when more than 50% of all the spirits being drunk in the UK were being smuggled in, and much of this from around the South West coast, with its remote headlands and beaches and sparse authority.