Greenway and River Dart valley walk, Devon

Explore south Devon’s beautiful River Dart valley on foot and by ferry, and visit Greenway Gardens, holiday home of writer Agatha Christie

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Novelist Agatha Christie bought the house and gardens at Greenway in 1938, and used it as a summer home until her death in 1976. Although she never wrote any books there, her work is closely linked to south Devon, in particular the Burgh Island Hotel, where she wrote Evil Under the Sun and And Then There Were None. The National Trust acquired the property in 2000 and opened the gardens to the public. Walking along the Dart Valley Trail from either Dartmouth or Kingswear – with a ride on the Greenway Ferry Service – makes a wonderful car-free day out.

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From Dartmouth’s Station Restaurant, follow the left edge of the Boat Float. Turn left along the Butterwalk and right into Foss Street. At the end bear right, then left up Brown’s Hill Steps. Turn left up Clarence Hill, then at Vicarage Hill keep ahead, heading uphill. Turn left at the junction. Cross Victoria Road and pass St Clement’s church. Cross Townstal Road via the crossing, then turn left into Mill Lane. At the T-junction cross over and descend steps by Archway Cottage. Turn left down Old Mill Lane and descend to the creek, before crossing a bridge and turning right. Pass the boatyard entrance and bear left up a track.

Follow the track uphill then turn right up a steep bridleway. Follow the grassy track through a gate, then take the signed route through fields and gates as lovely views over the Dart open up to the right. At a lane (Hole Farm right) turn left. Drop downhill and turn right over a stile. Descend through fields and stiles as Greenway peeps from the trees on the opposite bank, to meet a track. Turn right, then left towards Dittisham. Meet Manor Road; turn right to the quay and inn.

Ring the bell to summon the ferry. From Greenway Quay, follow the lane uphill to explore Greenway, the holiday home of Agatha Christie from 1938-1959.

Turn right, then left towards the car park and bear right through a gate. Climb steeply up the left field edge. Descend through two gates, then turn left along the field, passing through another on the track by Maypool youth hostel. Walk along the lane; turn right where signed. Bear left through a gate, right along the field edge, over a stile and left. Follow Dart Valley Trail signs, eventually crossing a stile into Long Wood. Follow the track downhill and continue on to cross a tarmac way by Higher Noss Quay, then pass through woodland to meet Bridge Road.

Cross over and take the footpath almost opposite. About 100m after the last house take a narrow path right to reach Station Road. Turn left for the Higher Ferry and cross the railway line. Turn left along a narrow path; follow the railway to Kingswear, through the marina and over the railway to Fore Street. Turn right downhill for the passenger ferry to Dartmouth and turn right for the Embankment.

Useful Information

Terrain

Good woodland and field paths, some usually muddy.

How to get there by car: Dartmouth Park and Ride (town centre car parks 4 hours max stay) is on A3122 at the top of town.

by public transport

Buses run from Kingsbridge, Modbury, Plymouth and Totnes.

Refreshments

Ferry Boat Inn

Manor Street, Dittisham, Dartmouth TQ6 0EX

% 01803 722368

Nearby excursions

Paignton and Dartmouth Steam Railway

% 01803 555872 www.paignton-steamrailway.co.uk Open end March-end Oct, plus Dec weekends; first train from Paignton 10.30am standard, 9.45am peak season. Return fares from Paignton to Kingswear: adult return £8, child £5.50, OAP £7.50, family £25; including ferry to Dartmouth £10/£6.50/£9.50/£30.

Also available Round Robin Trip: steam train Paignton to Kingswear, ferry to Dartmouth, river cruise to Totnes, bus to Paignton. Adult £15.25, child £10.50, OAP £14.25, family £46.

Greenway, Greenway Road, Galmpton, Devon TQ5 0ES  % 01803 842382

Open Mar-Oct, Wed-Sun. Admission adults £6, child £3 (discount if arriving by ferry).

www.nationaltrust.org.uk

MAP Ordnance Survey Explorer OL20. Grid ref: SX 879 514

More info

Dartmouth Information Centre

The Engine House, Mayors Avenue, Dartmouth TQ6 9YY

% 01803 834224

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www.discoverdartmouth.com