our varied wood and wetland birdlife
from your cottage window


to explore, relax and revitalise


and sustainable on a working smallholding


what life is about in our tranquil valley

Just three miles…

inland from Slapton village
on the South Devon coast

01803 770219

Rediscover what life is all about as you relax and unwind in one of our five pretty, comfy Watermill Cottages in the unspoilt coastal Gara Valley.  Just a ten minute drive to Slapton Sands, near Dartmouth in the heart of South Hams Area of Outstanding Natural beauty (AONB).

A shallow trout stream, private cottage gardens, shared streamside lawns, firepit, ancient woods, cricket bat willows, fields and water meadows, and green lane walks in 20 acres of stunning scenery, a 10 minute drive from Slapton Sands near Dartmouth.

Quack Cottage

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Rose Cottage

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Barleycorn Cottage

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Crownwheel Cottage

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Mill Cottage

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Rewild yourself, it’s old land here and the pretty Gara Brook runs through it all down to Slapton Ley National Nature Reserve. Enjoy star-gazing – as there’s no light pollution, we see The Milky Way!  Look for kingfishers, glow-worms, dippers, otters, trout, yellow wagtails, and dormice, make dams and paddle in the stream.  And as there’s no through traffic, it’s a green lane beyond us, it’s so peaceful and safe for pets and kids to play.  Plus we’re dog-friendly, flexible on the number of dogs too.

Tastefully converted from the former mill building, barns & workers’ cottages around a mill-house built in the 1750s, each cottage offers thick stone walls, beams, deep slate sills and a logburner.  Individual in decor, yet spacious, comfortable accommodation with a modern fitted kitchen (with own washing machine, microwave, electric oven or range, kettle, toaster, fridge-freezer), and bathrooms with baths and showers.

All cottages enjoy private fenced gardens or patios, have logburners, bbqs and outdoor seating. You’re welcome to make the most of the shared streamside lawns where there’s a firepit and more seating.  Wander round the valley, explore the wilderness or walk up to Strete to the pub, it’s only 40 minutes and has great sea views. Or simply relax in your own cottage garden. Feel real peace here in a tranquil valley almost untouched by the modern world. A sustainable holiday too – a water turbine generates electricity using the old mill leat and there’s free electric car charging for guests.

Watermill Cottages is perfect for getting away from it all… a sustainable coastal retreat, eco-friendly if you want peace and quiet, yet close to Slapton Sands & many other beaches as well as picturesque Devon villages with good restaurants, cafes and pubs. Join the The Coast Path for dramatic seascapes, explore green lanes, Dartmoor’s stone circles, footpaths and tracks.  Or make the most of local markets and the independent quirky shops and motte-and-bailey castle in Totnes. Try ferryhopping in Dartmouth, or chill out on the beaches, so many to choose from.  Or simply wander round Dartmouth, Salcombe or Totnes and treat yourself to a cream tea.

Holidays like they used to be, space to relax, play and explore… Call Christine, John or Jade on 01803 770219 or email christine@watermillcottages.co.uk

We are open for business and really look forward to welcoming you back to the valley.   We have followed all industry guidelines so that we offer you a clean and comfortable stay in our cottages.

2021 Availability (as at 05.05.2021)

Rose Cottage – sleeps 4 (twin/dbl)  

w/c Sat 22 May 2021 (6 nights)                                                         

w/c Fri 18 June 2021    £750                               




Just keeps getting better and better!

‘We’ve been to Watermill Cottages almost every year since 2007, and have an amazing time every year. The setup is perfect for holidaying with friends or extended family, and just as nice as a private getaway. Super kid-friendly and dog-friendly as well…’ Julie B

‘Absolutely awesome place! Thanks to Christine and John for an unbelievable weekend. Not to mention your homemade cider is top notch 👌 We’ll be back!’  AC & friends 2019

‘Thank you for a lovely family break… beautiful surroundings, cute and cosy cottage and really friendly welcome. Highly recommend.’ SM 2019

We welcome groups of families and friends, the cottages are perfect for combining. We’ve hosted writers, painters, horticulturalists, film-makers, bird-watchers, alternative therapists, photographers, poets, gardeners, growers, green woodworkers, walkers, runners, swimmers, fishers, cyclists – all love the natural relaxation of an untouched valley with a stream, birdsong and traffic-free walks.

Use our PodPoint, electric car charging point, to charge your electric car with ‘homegrown’ electricity generated by our onsite water turbine.

We’re all about holidays like they used to be… away from it all…

Wir sprechen auch Deutsch

Watermill Cottages
Higher North Mill, Hansel, Nr. Slapton
Dartmouth TQ6 0LN