The South West Coast Path is the longest of the UK National Trails, running from Minehead in Somerset round the English south west peninsula coast to Poole in Dorset. The total length is just over 1000 kilometres or 630 miles.
The South West Coast Path Association suggests an 8 week itinerary and the South West Coast Path National Trail website divides it into 52 sections, although it says it is possible to complete it in around 30 days (7 to 8 weeks at a more leisurely pace).
Taking it more slowly
- DETAILS OF OUR STAGES (including start and finish points, an estimate of the distance walked and the height climbed and where we stayed)
We did it in 83 stages over just short of 5 years. We used public transport and a very few taxis where there was no other option. Sometimes we based ourselves at a good transport hub for a few days and stayed in self catering accommodation and sometimes we moved between hotels and B&Bs from day to day either carrying minimal amounts of luggage or using the very useful useful Luggage Transfer South West.
- NB the entire walk involves climbing (and descending) a total height equal to more than three times that of Mount Everest....
South West Coast Path National Trail website provides an excellent and detailed guide to the 630 mile route in 52 sections.
The South West Coast Path Association provides online and printed information, news on the current state of the path, accommodation and a distance and timing calculator. Wel worth subscribing.
Luggage Transfer South West provides excellent service transferring luggage between accommodation stops. Also have a lot of information about accommodation.
Night Riviera Sleeper Service - services between Paddington and St Austell, Truro, Redruth, Penzance so you don't waste a day travelling. It's a really enjoyable way to travel!
One More Grain Of Sand - We met the author of this blog who subsequently published a beautiful book about remote beaches on the south west coast