THE BEST THINGS TO DO
The Local's Guide To Croyde Bay
Find out the best places to eat, grab the best coffee, get the best cream tea and much much more. Live like a local and avoid any pitfalls with our insider’s guide to Croyde Bay.
Croyde Bay in North Devon in the South West of England is perfect for family holidays year-round. If you’re planning to visit for a few days or several weeks, there’s so much to do.You can visit Croyde beach, a beautiful clean sandy bay. Relax in the village of Croyde with a great selection of pubs, cafes and restaurants. Or blow the cobwebs away with a walk along the National Trust owned Baggy Point headland.
Read more in the guide below.
Welcome To Croyde
Croyde Bay is situated on England’s North Devon coast. With its gorgeous sandy beaches and magical beauty it’s no wonder so many of Croyde’s visitors return time and time again.
The village itself is steeped in charm, with many of the original buildings and cottages still standing. It has a quaint presence about it, with the feeling that not too much has changed in the past 60 years.
Nowadays with the rise in popularity in surfing, the village can become a hustle and bustle of life in the summer months when the days are long and warm and the surf is up. With three fantastic long sandy beaches to choose from you can be sure to find a spot for yourself.
If sandy beaches are high on your priority list, Croyde bay and the surrounding beaches of Saunton Sands, Woolacombe beaches and Putsborough Sands, are perfect for family beach days. Anyone of these beaches is a great place to relax and enjoy time together.
Pick of the bunch is Croyde Bay a beautiful stretch of sandy beach surrounded by dunes and stunning rocky headlands.
The North Devon coastline is a walkers dream come true with rolling hills as far as the eye can see and coastlines so unspoilt they are picture perfect.
The stunning headland of Baggy Point, which is owned by The National Trust, is directly accessible from Croyde Beach. There are two family-friendly walks on offer, and the rugged clifftop views are simply amazing. Visit the National Trust Baggy Point guide for detailed descriptions of the trails, flora and fauna.
If you are a rambler looking for a lengthier stroll, there’s a beautiful circular walk from Croyde Beach, along Baggy Point and over to Putsborough Sands. You then take a cross country route which brings you right back into Croyde. It’s about a five-mile round trip.
After a busy day at the beach you can unwind in one of the local pubs beer gardens and enjoy that last bit of sunshine before deciding which of the local restaurants take your fancy. From traditional pubs and quaint bistro’s to the uber cool restaurant/bar the Blue Groove, there is something to tickle everyone’s taste buds!
All in all, Croyde has something to offer everyone no matter how young or old. Visit Croyde and you’re guaranteed not to forget it.
Surfing is very popular in Croyde, mainly because the beach is one of the best beach breaks in the UK if not the world when the conditions are right.
So as you might expect, surf shops and surfing school locations are in abundance. Pick of the surf schools is Surfing Croyde Bay, which is run by ex England Surfing Head Coach Damon Beveridge. They offer half-day, full-day and multi-day surfing lessons. You can also try Coasteering and stand up paddleboarding too.
If you have surfed before and you just want surf hire then, Surfing Croyde Bay has a great selection of modern Softech surfboards ideal for beginners and intermediates alike.
surf croyde bay
BOOK YOUR SURF HIRE & LESSONS
Coasteering is another prevalent activity to do if you are visiting Croyde.
If you’ve never heard of Coasteering you’re not the only one. Coasteering involves scrambling, jumping and swimming along the North Devon coastline. It is an exhilarating adventure.
Baggy Point is an excellent location to Coasteer and surfing Croyde Bay have several Coasteering Trips on offer every day.
BOOK YOUR COASTEERING EXPERIENCE
If the water is flat or there are small waves then stand up paddle boarding or SUP may be an activity you should consider. Stand up paddleboarding involves standing on a giant surfboard and using a single-bladed paddle to explore the ocean. There are some beautiful caves, gullies and ocean wildlife all accessible from Croyde. Surfing Croyde Bay offers several SUP trips every day.
stand up paddle
BOOK YOUR STAND UP
PADDLE BOARDING EXPERIENCE
If you are into music, then the annual Goldcoast Oceanfest event should be on your list. It’s an intimate festival, overlooking Croyde bay and has had bands play such as Craig David, Razorlight and Jess Glynne. It’s usually in June annually.
It is held on the hillside overlooking Croyde Bay which is a stunning location for a music festival. Additioanl info on Oceanfest and tickets can be found here.
If you’re looking for a great place to get a pint, then The Thatch Pub is the ideal spot.
With a selection of real ales, wine and lots of gins it’s a great spot to enjoy a pint.
During high season there’s live music from local artists on Friday and Saturday nights. The Thatch is also famous for its nachos, large and fully loaded!
where to get the best pint
the best cream tea
If tea rooms are your thing and let’s be honest who doesn’t enjoy a delicious cream tea? Then you have to try May Cottage Tea Rooms. It has by far the best scones, clotted cream and homemade jam in Croyde.
There’s even a savoury cream tea with cheese scones and chutney. Set inside the most charming cottage on 200m past the Post office it’s like taking a step back in time. Try it you won’t regret it!
The best ice-cream is always high on the list for any youngsters visiting Croyde. It’s high on the list for adults too!
The Old Cream Shop is the go-to place for a rich and creamy devon scoop or two.
Choose from over 20 different flavours and mix and match scoops too. The kids ice-creams are huge!
where to get the best ice cream
the best coffee & pasties
Good coffee, the best pasties and if you need to get some good wine, gin or snacks are best found at The Stores.
They don’t sell milk though so if you need milk, you need to visit the Post Office next door.
For a great burger, the go-to place is Blue Groove. A cool concrete chic bar come eatery Blue Groove also has DJ nights where you can let your hair down.
The Blue Groove also offers a delicious range of vegan and veggie food as well as excellent coffee.
where to get the best burger
Where to PARK
Parking in and around Croyde. There are four main car parks in Croyde, Down End on your left as you come into Croyde from Braunton. The village car park behind the Village Hall. Croyde Beach car park opposite the entrance to Ruda Holiday Park. The National Trust Car Park is at the opposite end of the beach to Down End, at the start of Baggy Point.
The largest shop in Croyde is Nisa which is accessible through the entrance to Ruda Holiday Park. It stocks most essentials and may save you a trip to Braunton.
The Stores in Croyde village stocks alcohol, bacon, eggs and a variety of other essentials.
The post office also has an array of essential items, toilet roll, coffee, snacks milk and also a cash machine (charges apply). If you withdraw money at the Post Office counter it is free of charge.
Braunton has a Tesco, which is a decent size, and you can get everything you need.
where's the supermarket?
Where to longboard
If you long-board there’s a world-class long-boarding wave right on your doorstep at Saunton Sands. On a good day, it’s not unusual to get 20-30 second rides. There’s a rip on the right side of the beach by the rocks that help you get out if it’s a big day. Don’t try this unless you know what you are doing though.
There aren’t any large surf shops in Croyde.
If you need some essential equipment, Ralph at Ralphs opposite The Thatch will be able to help you out.
If you’re looking for a new board or wetsuit, then we recommend visiting Glenn at Surfed Out in Braunton. He knows his stuff and will get you fitted correctly.
where's the best surf shop?
Where to stay?
Popular accomodation choices in Croyde are camping, holiday parks or holiday home rentals.
There are two holiday parks you can stay at in Croyde North Devon, Unison Croyde Bay Holiday Resort and Ruda Holiday Park, both of which have indoor swimming pools. As a unison member, you do get a discount at Croyde Bay Holiday Resort.
You can check out the in depth guide to camping in Croyde here.
Airbnb offer a selection of holiday homes for rent in Croyde.
There is a large range of accommodation available from campsites to self-catering bungalows, depending on needs. During the summer month’s accommodation is usually hard to come by if you haven’t booked your stay well in advance. For this reason we always recommend booking your holiday a few months in advance. We have carefully hand picked a few of our top recommendations which you can see by looking on our accommodation page.
Croyde has Saunton Sands links golf course right on its doorstep.
The golf course is a world-class facility, so if you enjoy teeing it up, you should head onto the links for a few holes.
Visitors are welcome just call the pro shop to arrange a tee time.
where can i play goLf?
Where to watch a movie
Finally, if you’re looking for a completely different evening in Croyde, then you just have to check out the deckchair cinema. Open during peak season once a week in the village hall. Its a completely different cinematic experience that shows a range of kids and artisan movies.
How To Get Here
There are so many ways to get here to Croyde and if you get it right you can be with us in 3 hours from London and just under two hours from Bristol which are our two closest cities.
We have suggested a few travel options for you to make your entire experience from leaving you home as relaxing and enjoyable as possible.
Using public transport
The best way to get using the public transport is by getting the train. You can get trains from anywhere in the UK which will take you to Exeter St.Davids. Once you are here there is a connecting train which takes you to Barnstaple station. (please check train times so your train into Exeter links with the Barnstaple train) once you arrive in Barnstaple it is about a 10 minute walk to the bus station where you will need to get the 21A bus to Croyde.
Bus Service 21A : Click for timetable
Make your way onto the M5 head south/ north until you get to Junction 27 and take the A361 which will take you to barnstaple and then follow signs for Croyde.
Hobbs Hill | Croyde | North Devon | EX33 1LZ | tel 01271 891200