Wade through the sea to Burgh Island with its spectacular views & 14th century pub

Strolling across the sand causeway to Burgh Island from the mainland is simply not good enough.  You have to time it so that you wade knee deep through the water, otherwise where’s the fun in that? You will be rewarded with an island to explore, panoramic views to wow and then a pint and packet of crisps in a 700 year old pub.  You could even get the sea tractor back to shore to complete the adventure.

We waded over to Burgh island through the icy April sea - wow it was chilly! But it was all part of the adventure, anyone can simply walk across a stretch of sand! The added bonus to crossing at this time is that you could have the island pretty much to yourself.

We walked along footpaths snaking across the island, then stopped right at the top at the remains of a chapel known as Huer’s Hut to take in the spectacular view. It is thought that the chapel was where fishermen would keep a watch for shoals of pilchard.

The Burgh Island Hotel takes up a fair portion of the island, complete with its own private swimming cove and diving platform and infamous as a setting for various Agatha Christie mysteries and murders. It looks blissful all dressed up in its art deco glamour.

We Wandered back down to sea level and into the 14th century Pilchard Inn for a drink. This pub is everything you would expect from an island hideout. It is easy to imagine it as a drinking hole for smugglers, pirates and those wishing to keep a reasonable distance between themselves & the law-abiding mainland. There are huge stone fireplaces to enjoy your tipple next to but we ventured out on to the surrounding benches to watch the tide wash in and out.

If you stay at the Pilchard inn too long and the sea starts to wrap back around the island you can get back to the mainland aboard the monstrous sea tractor – which is a marvel in itself.


Burgh Island, Bigbury-on-Sea, South Devon, TQ7 4BG
You can reach Burgh island over the causeway from Bigbury on Sea – check the tide times before you go.
Be aware when walking on the island with young children or dogs - there are cliff drops