Oh what a beautiful day!

For weeks, I’ve been meaning to walk round the National Nature Reserve (NNR) just down the lane from Watermill Cottages at Slapton Ley. With the first spring birdcalls in the air and a beaming sun, today was the day,.

Slapton Ley towards Torcross

A fabulously crammed fresh crab sandwich and a cuppa at The Start Bay Inn at Torcross for lunch then a walk round the Ley – the colours, my goodness. 

And as I rounded a dip in th path at the edge of the lapping Ley, nine young swans preening – I couldn’t believe my luck.  Some of the young from last year, such a good swan year.

The view from the hide at Ireland Bay, round the walk from the bridge on the Slapton road is magnificent –  looking over reed beds to Ireland Farm which was evacuated in preparation for Operation Tiger in 1943, a rehearsal for the D-Day Landings in World War Two.  The inhabitants didn’t ever return.      

A Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) the Reserve is managed by Slapton Ley Field Centre and is home to otters, birdlife, butterflies, including bitterns, Cetti’s warbler and kingfishers.  The Gara brook that runs through the garden and valley of Watermill Cottages feeds the Higher Ley, which is why we take so much care of our land.

Come and enjoy this beautiful stretch of Devon coast, Watermill Cottages, behind Slapton and near Dartmouth is the perfect base, call Christine and John on 01803 770219.

View over the ring bench at Slapton ley to the monument commemorating Operation Tiger in WWII