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South Milton Sands // Hope Cove

South Milton Sands
Photo: © Nilfanion / CC BY-SA 3.0
South Milton Sands
Photo: © Philip Halling / CC BY-SA 3.0

The sweep of golden sand that makes up South Milton Sands is instantly recognisable by the iconic rock arch of Thurlestone Rock which sits just offshore here. Set in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty that makes up much of the South Hams coast this popular beach is owned by the National Trust.

South Milton is one of those beaches that will appeal to everyone. For families it is perfect with safe, lifeguard patrolled (May to September) waters and all the facilities you could ask for. The Beach House cafe serves light snacks and a lunch menu with locally caught fish whilst for those looking for something more energetic there are wetsuits, paddle boards and various other watercraft for hire.

In addition South Milton Sands is something of a haven for wildlife, both above and below the waterline. The nearby wetlands have been designated an area of Special Scientific Interest and are home to rare butterflies as well as being a great place to spot visiting migratory birds.

With the water quality here gaining the Marine Conservation Society's seal of approval (!) it is little surprise dolphins and, yes, seals are commonly seen here. Over recent years there have even been whale sightings off the coast of South Milton.

One way to get a closer view of some of the local sealife is to go snorkelling - the clear water and rocks at the end of the beach are ideal for this. For the youngsters there are a wealth of rockpools to explore at low tide.

South Milton Sands tide times

  • Sat 25th May

    Low 1:32am (1.14m)
    High 7:42am (5.17m)
    Low 1:47pm (1.17m)
    High 8:00pm (5.32m)
  • Sun 26th May

    Low 2:10am (1.16m)
    High 8:22am (5.10m)
    Low 2:25pm (1.26m)
    High 8:40pm (5.27m)
  • Mon 27th May

    Low 2:51am (1.24m)
    High 9:03am (4.98m)
    Low 3:06pm (1.40m)
    High 9:21pm (5.16m)
  • Tue 28th May

    Low 3:35am (1.37m)
    High 9:48am (4.82m)
    Low 3:50pm (1.58m)
    High 10:05pm (5.04m)