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The English Riviera

The English Riviera is made up of the three distinctly different 19th century holiday resort towns of Paignton, Torquay and Brixham.  The English Riviera is famous for its beautiful long sandy beaches, stunning views, red sandstone cliffs and crystal clear waters.

The English Riviera is also known as Torbay.  To the west, Torbay is edged by steep hills creating a sun-trap with a local micro-climate that is warmer than the rest of the country!


Paignton is a popular family friendly holiday resort located midway between Torquay and Brixham. Paignton is well known for its beautiful sandy beaches which are safe for bathing and ideal for paddling – making Paignton and the neighbouring Goodrington Sands the perfect holiday destinations for young families.

Paignton’s bustling seafront features its magnificent pier which dates back to 1878. The pier offers visitors an array of attractions on both its open deck and inside, plus fabulous views of Torbay. There is also an 18th century harbour, that dries at low tide. The harbour area is a hive of activity, especially during the summer season. Nearby Goodrington, offers many family attractions including fabulous waterslides at Quaywest, a boating lake and beaches.


Torquay is well known for its nine sandy beaches, seven green hills, palm lined promenade and grand Victorian villas. It is the largest and most northerly of the Torbay and English Riviera resorts.

Since it first become popular in the 19th Century, Torquay has grown into a cosmopolitan town with many modern attractions. Torquay has a bustling harbourside and marina with an array of pavement cafes, stylish boutiques, restuarants and bars.


Brixham is a bustling fishing port nestled in the rugged cliffs at the southern end of Torbay. Made up of an array of colourful cottages clinging to the hillsides at the base of which you will find one of Britain’s most beautiful harbours.

Brixham is one of Britain’s busiest fishing ports. The town features a central harbour surrounded by narrow lanes that lead up into the surrounding hillside. The bustling harbour is home to a fabulous replica of Sir Francis Drake’s ship, the Golden Hind. You can also find many pleasure boats sailing between Brixham and Torquay on the opposite side of the Bay.

Brixham also has a 500 berth yacht marina which is sheltered from the south-westerly winds by the cliffs of Berry Head, a National Nature Reserve with one of the largest guillemot colonies on England’s south coast.

Useful Information and Links

Here is an interactive map of Torbay:

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