Ideas for the Paignton Weekend

The eagerly anticipated BMW Oxford Weekend in Paignton is only a few weeks away.

A PowerPoint presentation was shared at the last Zoom Social, and a PDF copy is available below. The slides give an overview of answers to the questions:

  • How are we going to get there?
  • What sort of activities are on offer?
Paignton 2020

Each slide has a short explanation.

The route down was suggested by David Hicks. The starting point of Costa at the Hungerford Garden Centre is a good location with plenty of parking and convenient for most people. (We used this starting point when riding to Minehead for the weekend.) The café is open for both indoor and outdoor drinks and light snacks. The route down to the A303 may change at the leader’s discretion (eg avoidance of the Stonehenge section on A303). Haynes Motor Museum is a good location for a light lunch with plentiful parking and a good café.

After the lunch stop, we follow the A303 to Exeter before diverting onto the coast road via Starcross, Dawlish, Teignmouth and Shaldon. This gives good views of the Devon coastline before arriving at Torquay. (Other routes are of course available at your discretion).

Paignton Beach

The Dartmouth Steam Railway is within walking distance of the Palace Hotel. The return rail ticket includes the passenger ferry from Kingswear to Dartmouth. One ticket option is to add a boat trip round the Estuary to your rail booking. Dartmouth itself is well worth exploring being the home of the Britannia Royal Naval College. It is possible to have a guided tour of the College but at the time of writing there are only 21 spaces available at 10.00 on Monday 5 October. See for more details.

There are plenty of options for food and drinks in Dartmouth.

The Rideout suggested by David Hicks gives a reasonable tour around the best bits of South Devon. The use of the Dartmouth car ferry adds to the excitement of motorcycling and certainly saves a long detour via Totnes. The first suggested destination is Slapton Sands. This was used as a training area ahead of D-Day in 1944. It was chosen because it was a close match for the Utah Beach in Normandy used by US troops on D-Day. Exercise Tiger at Slapton Sands may have given live fire training but there were sadly many servicemen were killed both by German E boats and by friendly fire. Most of those who died were US service personnel. Despite the loss of life, it is claimed that the exercise saved many more lives on D-Day. There is no museum as such, but a Sherman tank recovered from the sea has been left as a memorial.

Turning inland, the route takes us via Kingsbridge towards Dartmoor. Buckfast Abbey is well worth a visit. Their latest claim to fame has been the export in large quantities of Tonic Wine for consumption in Scotland! The monks have long been keen apiarists producing good quality honey for sale in their shop. For more details see their website

The route back to the hotel is via Totnes.

Other places to visit include:

Hoping for good weather and a safe visit to Paignton


Author: geoffbmwox

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