Visit Plymouth on a Budget
Whether it is a staycation or you are visiting from further afield, sometimes we have to watch the pennies when on our travels. When visiting Plymouth, there are many things that you can do, for free, or low cost to make for an exciting break.
Plymouth sits on the sunny south coast of England. With a fascinating maritime heritage, beautiful beaches and many family attractions, it is the perfect holiday destination. For those visiting Plymouth with not a lot of expendable cash in their pockets, here are some things to do within this beautiful coastal city:
Plymouth Hoe is a fantastic walk with breath-taking seaside scenery and a peaceful atmosphere. There are lots of things to explore, including monuments, gardens and of course Smeaton’s Tower. For a small fee, you can climb the stairs to the top, and view the coast from 72 feet in the air.
Other sights include the monument to Sir Francis Drake, a Naval Memorial, the War Memorial, Royal Marine Memorial and West Hoe Park with a large children's play area, a miniature railway and putting green. It also has a large open grassed area perfect for picnics or playing games. You can also find the Royal Citadel here, set into the shape of the southern sea.
Even though Plymouth is known as Britain’s Ocean City, there are also fantastic green spaces to change the scenery from the waterfront walks. There are a host of trails that you can explore and take in the stunning landscape, with the South West Coast Path leading you along the water’s edge. However, do not expect to complete the whole trail as it is 630 miles in total running from Minehead in Somerset to Poole in Dorset.
Plymbridge Woods has a lot to discover, including a woodland wander with the remains of Plymouth’s industrial past. Along the way, you may see kingfishers, sea trout, dippers, peregrine falcon, deer and other wildlife. There is also a cycle route which follows the old Great Western Railway track.
Probably the most famous in the area is Dartmoor National Park. Here you can walk, cycle, go horse riding, climbing and canoeing. It is a landscape quite unlike any other, populated by lofty granite tors, mysterious hut circles and standing stones, ancient woodlands, sturdy clapper bridges, rushing streams, Dartmoor ponies, bustling stannary towns and secluded villages.
Dartmoor National Park. Image courtesy of Visit Plymouth
Devon is the ideal place to soak in the sun and dip your toes in the sand, with plenty of beaches near Plymouth. Even in the cooler temperatures of autumn and winter, the beach is the perfect spot to spend some time away from it all. Read a book, take a walk, or run along the shoreline – there are plenty of ways to spend time at the beach on a budget.
Plymouth's closest sandy beaches are Bovisands and Wembury, being just a 15 - 20 minute drive away from the city centre. Wembury is a beautiful beach, owned by the National Trust, which is just as stunning on a misty winter’s day as it is in the summer heat and is excellent for rock pooling. Bovisands is a sheltered bay of yellow sand with cliffs either side, this popular beach has a large expanse of flat sand when the tide is out, making it perfect for games. As areas of outstanding natural beauty, these destinations are very popular with locals and families.
Around 30 minutes from the city centre you will find Jennycliff beach, a very small and cozy pebble beach with rock pools. Above the beach, there is a pleasant grass area suitable for picnics and games, and there are beautiful views to enjoy across Plymouth Sound. If you feel like chilling out with friends, family or on your own, you should definitely head here.
Jennycliff Beach. Image courtesy of Visit Plymouth
An activity that is fun for all ages and equipment can easily be obtained without spending a lot. With a net or a line and some bait, you will have a bucket full of crabs in no time – or you can choose to throw them back.
This can be done in the various rockpools on the seafront, but a popular spot is Sutton Harbour. It is still a busy fishing port and marina and is on the other side of the historic Barbican district, where you can also find a spot to crab.
Image courtesy of Visit South Devon
Plymouth is home to a large range of park spaces that you can undoubtedly enjoy a picnic with friends and family. Whether you are near Plymouth Hoe or in Central Park, you will have lush green surrounding you and the ability to become one with nature. The kids will love the play areas, pitch and putt locations, bowling green, and skate parks on offer. Bring some snacks or lunch and relax with the beauty of nature all around you.
The gardens are also a delight to discover. The Elizabethan Gardens is a little garden and is an oasis of tranquillity, in a sea of shoppers and tourist activity. It is in a street that was new in the 16th century when wealthy merchants built their houses here. Although a popular tourist stop it is tucked away and can be quiet and completely empty even on a hot August day.
Another National Trust site, Saltram Gardens, is another excellent place to explore. The house is full of treasures, stories and intrigue. There is a secret garden to lose yourself in, plus a park that cyclists, walkers, and four-legged friends love.
The Elizabethan Gardens. Image courtesy of Visit Plymouth
Keep Plymouth in mind as you make your next travel plans. There are tons of things to do in the area, so you are sure to have a memorable break in Plymouth, whatever your budget.
Future Inns has 143 rooms with everything you would expect and more for a night away. The hotel offers free parking and free WiFi to all guests. All bedrooms sleep up to four guests, so they are family-friendly and ideal for groups. Plus, under 12s stay for free, and kids eat free. Just under 4 miles north of Plymouth city centre, you are close to all of the attractions, including Plymouth Hoe, Royal William Yard and the National Marine Aquarium. Also, did you know we're a cycle-friendly hotel?
Bedrooms at Future Inn Plymouth
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