North Devon Coast

National Landscape

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Combe Martin Beach

The beach has extensive sandy and rocky areas depending on the state of the tide, and is cleaned of seaweed most of the time, making it generally suitable for families and marine nature enthusiasts. The beach also holds clues to Combe Martin’s silver-lead mining heritage – with an intriguing adit (mine entrance) cut into a cliff. The seaside was the former hub of the area’s sea-faring past, with much of the trade and travel taking place by sea rather than the steep hillside roads. 

Nature and Landscape

Like all beaches with rockpools, Combe Martin beach is a great place to get up close to nature.  Don’t forget to adhere to the seashore code to make sure both you and the wildlife stay healthy.


The beach is within the Hele, Samson’s and Combe Martin Bays Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) which stretches along this part of the coast. This is the first of a series of geologically important sites stretching west along the North Devon coast. The sheer variety of types of rock that are exposed, along with their faults and folds, make the whole site nationally significant. Several of the outcrops from these bays are the ‘type specimens’: the subject of the first scientific description of that particular kind of rock.

The shoreline east of Combe Martin shows Ilfracombe Slates including prominent sandstones and shelly limestones. Along the shoreline west of the beach, the Combe Martin Beach Limestone is seen within the Combe Martin Slates.

Amenities & Activities

The beach is adjacent to a public carpark with toilets. Close by there are various cafes, pubs, shops and restaurants.

The beach does not have lifeguards. Care should be taken at low tide not to get cut off when walking out toward the sea – tide times are displayed on a notice board at the Information Centre.  Combe Martin Beach is suitable for typical sea-side activities including general relaxation, rockpooling and fishing.

Links & Resources
Beach Information
Weather & Tides
Coastwise North Devon
Visit Combe Martin

Sea Shore Code

Coasteering links
Active Escape
Extreme Coasteering