Be it a coastal or countryside location, Devon is home to some of the finest sunset-watching spots in the UK. During the summer months, when this majestic show falls later in the day, you’ll have plenty of opportunity to watch the glowing ball sink behind the sea or hills. In fact, the sunsets are often so stunning that you’d hardly believe you were still in England – and if that’s not a good enough reason to book your next escape to Devon, check out our ultimate bucket list to find 30 others!
Photo by Eleanor Davis via The South West Through a Lens
A beautiful beach by day and by night, catching a sunset here after indulging on fish and chips is a real treat. Set up your beach towel, bring along the drink of your choice and get ready to gaze in awe at the changing colours of the sky as the sun sinks behind the sea.
The 3-mile-long beach has plenty of space for you to find a secluded spot to watch the sun disappear beyond the horizon, as the silhouettes of surfers bob up and down in the water. Or why not enjoy a Sri Lankan curry on Barricane Beach before you watch day turn to dusk?
Insider’s tip: Head up to Marine Drive above the dunes to get the best vantage point.
Emsworthy Rocks, Dartmoor
Photo by Austin Appleby via The South West Through a Lens
The views at Emsworthy Rocks are spectacular from all directions, making this a picture-perfect spot for both sunrises and sunsets. It’s an easy location to access Dartmoor, with plenty of car parks for those not keen for a trek before sundown.
Due to its remote location, there really isn’t much around so it’s perfect for a peaceful end to the day. Make sure you pack a picnic and something nice to drink before settling down to watch the sky turn a thousand shades of orange.
Insider’s tip: For an even more epic view, climb to the top of the rocks for an elevated seat.
Teignmouth Back Beach
Photo by Richard Taylor via The South West Through a Lens
This charming beach is a tranquil haven and wonderful spot to see the changing colours of the sky. While most of Teignmouth’s coast faces east, Back Beach faces west creating the perfect setting for an epic sunset. See boats bobbing atop the water and watch the world go by in the calm ripple of the water.
For a special treat during the summer, take the passenger ferry across to the hidden gem of Shaldon Beach for a secret sunset which you might not have to share with many others. There are plenty of pubs near the beach too, for a refreshing sundowner.
Insider’s tip: Dogs are welcome on Back Beach all year round so your pup can enjoy the sunset too!
Photo by @georgiaxpricey via Instagram
With nearly 2 miles of glorious golden sand that gently slopes toward the sea, it doesn’t matter how busy the beach may be – you'll still find a quiet spot to sit and contemplate life or take that perfect silhouette shot in the fading last light.
There are plenty of great spots to catch the sunset in the village too – take your pick from the waterfront pubs and restaurants, sit on a bench in the village green or find a comfy spot on the iconic pebble ridge, drink in hand.
Insider’s tip: For the most picturesque shot, time your visit with the high tide for a colourful reflection in the water.
Photo by David Hixton via The South West Through a Lens
Brixham Breakwater offers a pretty walk taking you around half a mile offshore. When glancing back you'll be rewarded with a unique view of the harbour and town. Experience stunning sights in calm, clear weather, or feel the theatre as dramatic waves smash over the breakwater during stormier weather; this is a superb spot all year round.
Brixham Breakwater is also a popular fishing spot, where you might catch wrasse, mackerel, bass, pollock and mullet. There couldn’t be a more relaxing evening than casting a line into the sea while the colours of the sky change all around you – just remember any boats heading out of the harbour for a sunset trip have right of way.
Insider’s tip: Brixham Harbour lighthouse at the end of the breakwater makes an excellent focal point for a sunset photo.
Photo by Tim Clyburn via The South West Through a Lens
Located in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, it’s no surprise that this has made the best sunset spots list. Take your pick from a panoramic view from one of the nearby benches, or a lower view from the sandy shore where you’ll be watching the magic over the rock pools and shimmering sea.
Bigbury is also a popular surfing spot on the south coast of Devon, so there couldn’t be a more picturesque setting for catching some waves as the sun dips behind the horizon and the sky turns to orange and pink.
Insider’s tip: Visit the Pilchard Inn on Burgh Island (you can walk across at low tide) for a sundowner in a totally unique setting.
Photo by David Taylor via The South West Through a Lens
There are so many fantastic sunset spots along the River Dart, and one of our favourites is where the river releases into the sea at Dartmouth. If you’re an avid kayaker or canoer, then a sunset paddle along this river should definitely be on your bucket list!
Some companies even provide chartered boat trips at sunset, so you can sit back and relax on a gentle cruise down the river, glass of fizz in hand, and watch the spectacular sky.
Insider’s tip: Head to Kingswear Castle on the eastern banks of the Dart for a historic sunset setting.
Photo by Sam Hussey via The South West Through a Lens
Providing breathtaking panoramas at all times of day, Plymouth Hoe is undeniably beautiful; once the daylight sinks in the evening, it really comes to life. Settle down on the green lawn and treat yourself to an evening picnic to take in the full effect of its natural beauty.
Plymouth Hoe is also blessed with plenty of waterside restaurants and bars where you can relax with some delicious seafood or a chilled drink and truly enjoy the seaside setting.
Insider’s tip: The view from Hoe Park stretching across to the mysterious Drake’s Island, and with the famous Smeaton’s Tower in the foreground, is truly iconic.
Now, if we’ve done our job, we’ll have convinced you that you need to visit Devon this summer, so why not take a look at our array of equally beautiful cottages in Devon for your next escape? Then, if you catch a beautiful sunset in the South West, join our Facebook photography group ‘The South West Through a Lens’ to share it with us!