Search the best hotels in Dartmouth
Dartmouth in South Devon is best known as a naval town and it still houses Britain's largest Naval College. Nowadays it has become much more of a seaside escape for city dwellers: some have dubbed it "Knightsbridge by the sea" and certainly, in the height of summer, it is full of fancy yachts moored in the harbour and immaculately turned out lunching ladies. With such a discerning clientele it has ensured that the best places to stay in Dartmouth and the surrounding area just get better and better. There is a wide choice of properties for all budgets and plenty to satisfy most tastes from those who prefer their hotels traditional, to those who like something a bit more hip.
The influx of the smart holiday crowd has ensured that the town has not languished on its laurels either. There are now plenty of chic shops and boutiques, plus a great selection of upmarket restaurants and cafes. It also boasts a smart arts centre which puts on small theatrical productions, live music, films and much more including hosting the annual comedy festival. As for history buffs, there is much to get excited about too. Visit Dartmouth Castle, which dates back to the 14th century, pop into the Museum where you will find all you want to know about the town's past, and explore the Butterwalk, a street of 17th century houses with a gorgeous timber framed original arcade. Or simply jump on the steam train for a spot of nostalgia and a great day out.
Beach wise there are plenty of sandy spots for everyone. In Dartmouth itself, there is nothing beachy to speak of, but venture slightly further afield and you’ll discover the delights of Blackpool Sands, Bigbury on Sea, Thurlestone Beach and South Milton Sands to name but a few. If an active break is more your thing, then Dartmouth can tick pretty much all the boxes. A sailor’s paradise, there are fantastic walks too (get to know the South West Coast Path), plus sea or river kayaking, surfing and much more. Just don't forget to book well ahead, the best places to stay in Dartmouth are booked months in advance during the peak holiday season and school holidays.
What Not to miss
- Go kayaking or sailing on the River Dart.
- Visit the 15th century remains of Dartmouth Castle.
- Visit Greenway, the holiday home of Agatha Christie.
- Go for a stroll along the South West Coast Path.
- Enjoy a Shakespeare performance at Dartmouth Castle in July.
- Check out the Food Festival in October.
- Be sure to check out Foss Street, which teems with boutiques, cute cafes and art galleries.
This quaint seaside town is perfect for a relaxing seaside holiday. Check out our collection of the best places to stay in Dartmouth to start planning your trip.
The best places to stay in Dartmouth
For a central location
- The Royal Castle Hotel enjoys a plum location overlooking the town's harbour. Rooms are elegant and individually designed, and the Grill Room restaurant has been awarded one AA Rosette.
- Bayards Cove Inn is a gorgeous period property right in the heart of town with just seven rooms (two of which can accommodate families). All are smartly decked out and boast period features. The bar and restaurant are a definite highlight - popular with locals and guests alike.
- Kaywana Hall is a modernist designer house situated above the river Dart. The owners have filled it with art and for the style conscious there is slate and glass everywhere. The three bedrooms each have their own front doors, private terraces, fluffy robes, iPod docking stations; in fact most of the accoutrements you would expect from a luxury hotel. On a sunny day you can simply kick back by the outdoor pool and imagine you’re in California.
- Strete Barton House is another excellent B&B. A much more traditional proposition than Kaywana, but very special too. Think Egyptian cotton bed linen, super-comfy beds, stunning panoramic views across Start Bay and delicious breakfast.
- We’d recommend Fingals. This quirky and informal property has become a firm favourite over the years, with its house party atmosphere and laid back vibe; indeed they positively encourage you to bring children and dogs! Situated in beautiful countryside, yet only a mile from the river at Dittisham it occupies the perfect spot.
- The Dart Marina Hotel occupies a prime position overlooking Dartmouth's harbour, and it's the place to book if you're looking for a spot of luxury and pampering. There are 49 chic rooms, plus a luxury spa and an AA Rosette winning restaurant.
Prefer an apartment or cottage?
- Our partner Booking.com has a wide range of cottages and apartments in the nearby area.
- The best time to go is during the summer when the temperature ranges between 13 and 20 degrees.
- Fly to London, get a train to Totnes, from where you can get a bus to Dartmouth.
- If you want to rent a car we recommed contacting our partner Rentalcars.
Still not sure?
Best Hotels in Dartmouth
Kaywana Hall 4 rooms from £170Dartmouth, Devon
Modern design, Californian style boutique B+B with a pool, close to the River Dart. Rooms have their own entrances and sit out terraces, so ideal if you don't want to be disturbed.Great walks - Down to the river Dart or through the valleyCooking classes - Next door at Manna from DevonRestrictions on children - Adults onlySwimming Pool - Indoor/outdoorRecommended by - I Escape, Sawdays
Bayards Cove Inn 7 rooms from £84Dartmouth (South Devon)
Set a beautiful historic townhouse, Bayards Cove Inn is a classy establishment in Dartmouth. Its modus operandi is to do the simple things well and the hotel staff make good on this. Excellent restaurant, comfortable rooms and a beautiful setting overlooking the Dartmouth estuary all help of course.Great walks - Go for lovely walks on the nearby beaches such as Blackpool Sands.Sights nearby - Ten minutes walk from the magnificent Dartmouth Castle.Fishing - Sea fishing trips can be organised by the hotel.Seaside - Ideal for a seaside holiday.
Strete Barton House 6 rooms from £105nr Dartmouth, Devon
This top-notch B&B is a 6th century cottage set in a picturesque village close to the beach. High standards of interior decor - contemporary with exotic touches. Sleigh beds and striking colour schemes. Relaxing and comfortable, with a beautiful garden and terrace overlooking the sea.Views - Panoramic views across Start Bay from Start Point light-house to the mouth of the river DartGreat walks - Just off the south west coast pathRestrictions on children - No children under 8 yearsFishing - Excellent fishing nearby.
Fingals Bed and Breakfast 2 rooms from £110Dartmouth (South Devon)
Delightfully informal boutique B&B near the River Dart. 'Quintessentially English' - this 17th Century house is full to the rafters with art and antiques and home to a fine lawn, and grass tennis court. A magical spot for a proper home from home experience!Local exploring - Explore the surrounding countryside, from vineyards and country houses, to seaside and river adventures.Families - The perfect countryside family escapeGreat walks - Using the river as your guide, the countryside truly is your oyster.Sailing - Lessons available nearby on the River Dart.Recommended by - Sawdays
Dart Marina Hotel 49 rooms from £160Dartmouth (South Devon)
This property, in Dartmouth's buzzing harbour has a luxury spa and an AA Rosette awarded restaurant. Chic rooms in pale palettes are bright with large windows overlooking the River Dart. There are also self-contained apartments. This property is perfectly located to explore Dartmoor.Sailing - This hotel is places perfectly for sailing enthusiasts of all abilities.Sights nearby - Dartmouth and Kingswear Castle are both nearby and a great day out!Romantic - Good for couples.Views - Great views from hotelRecommended by - Good Hotel Guide
Royal Castle Hotel 24 rooms from £180Dartmouth (South Devon)
A traditional hotel boasting a fabulous location overlooking the River Dart and just steps from the castle. Elegant rooms are traditionally dressed with antique furniture, patterned wallpaper and chandeliers. An atmospheric fire lit restaurant specialises in grills. A charming stay.Local exploring - Perfectly placed in the heart of Dartmouth with many of its attractions within walking distance.Great walks - Find glorious walks in the surrounding countryside with trails suitable for gentle walks or more challenging hikes.Sights nearby - Visit the imposing Dartmouth Castle, just a short stroll from the property.Sailing - Take a cruise along the river on a coal-fired paddle steamer.