Paignton

Paignton

Paignton is part of the stunning English Riviera which also includes Torquay & Brixham. Paignton has plenty to offer including superb beaches of golden sand and a good selection of seafront restaurants, bars and marine activities. The beaches in Paignton stretch for miles and make for fantastic walks with breathtaking views or rockpool exploring!

Traditional family holiday destination

Paignton Pier and beach

Paignton was a small fishing village until the 19th century, when in 1837 the Paington Harbour Act saw the construction of a new harbour and the modern spelling, Paignton, first appeared. It is mentioned in the Domesday Book of AD 1086. Formerly spelt Peynton and Paington, the name derives from Paega's town which was the original Anglo-Saxon settlement. The town has had a market and fair since 1294.

Paignton is rightly famous for the wonderful soft and sandy beaches (with all important child friendly waters) and offers a bright and family fun atmosphere. There are traditional seaside activities with paddle boats and canoes or there are motor boats and cruise boats for hire. If you're feeling full of energy you could try water skiing, scuba diving, snorkeling, surfing, fishing and that much admired pastime, crabbing. Don't forget, bacon is the best bait of all - ooh, and don't forget to throw the poor crabs back in the water when you're done. There are also waterslides and crazy golf to try your hand at too.

Paignton beach and the nearby Preston Sands are used for water sports including kite surfing and dinghy sailing. The reed beds found at Broadsands beach are a haunt of the rare cirl bunting. Hollicombe beach, situated at Paignton's northern boundary with Torquay, features a geological stratotype at its northern end, known as the "Corbyn's Head Member". Elberry Cove is used by jetski enthusiasts, while Saltern Cove is a Site of Special Scientific Interest due to its distinctive geology. At Goodrington beach you can hire pedaloes, sun loungers, beach huts and deck chairs. There are also various water sports on offer, including water skiing and ‘ringo rides’. Younger visitors will be able to make the most of the QuayWest Water Park, which boasts eight water-slides and flumes, the Kamikaze ride and a supervised play area for toddlers.

Agatha Christie lived in nearby Torquay and often attended the Torbay Picture House in Paignton and based the theatres in her thrillers on that cinema

Our Trips From Paignton

All three of most popular trips detailed below can be taken from Paignton!

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What to do in Paignton

Grab yourself a bucket and spade, spend a few hours on the beach and enjoy a traditional family seaside experience!

The great attraction of Paignton is the long and beautiful sandy beach. Swimming and water sports like wind surfing and dinghy sailing are very popular and Elberry Cove is popular for jet skiing. Other smaller coves have rock pools inhabited by corals, starfish and other intriguing marine life.

The Paignton Regatta is held annually at the beginning of August and is the hub for many activities including a fantastic fireworks display which can be viewed from the beach or pier. The Torbay Airshow should be a fantastic weekend with both military and civilian air displays and loads of ground based activities too. Hopefully this will take place again in 2022!

You could try your hand at crazy golf on the green and there is a cinema complex right next door.

How to get here

Parking at Paignton

There are a number of local car parks to choose from. Just click on the car park links below for details.

All the above are operated by Torbay Council - weekly car park tickets can be obtained from local Tourist Information Centres.

Reviews

  • Choo choo - What a lovely trip we had. Despite covid they had 2 steam services in operation and could safely carry lots of people. A 20 minute journey and free ferry to Dartmouth is included in the price. Go enjoy some nostalgia!
  • Scenic excursion - The journey from Paignton to Kingswear was a beautiful mixture of country and coast. The trains are vintage carriages and passengers are spaced out for safety. Lovely.
  • All lovely - All done very well. Everything clean (train/boats), staff friendly and commentary on the river cruise added a bit of fun. Really good day out, lots of families. Take hats, drinks and dogs! If you have one.

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