A gem of a town...
Dawlish is a fascinating little regency resort town huddled attractively between steep surrounding hills. There are several popular beaches here including Dawlish Warren - a popular holiday destination which is aslo a wildlife haven with its own visitor centre.
The town itself, particularly around the seafront, is like many of the resort towns in South Devon, a classic of Regency and early Victorian style. The Strand (1803-1809), although mostly converted to shops, remains impressive. It was here that Jane Austen stayed, as did Charles Dickens (who decided to make Dawlish the birthplace of Nicholas Nickleby). Also worth noting are Manor House and Brook House (both about 1800) and some of the cottages in Old Town Street surviving from the old Dawlish village. Dawlish's transformation from an insignificant fishing settlement to a watering hole for Victorian celebrities can be discovered at the excellent Museum.
In the middle of the town is a flat landscaped area called 'The Lawn', home to various wildfowl and the famous Dawlish black swans. Brought here from Australia by a local resident, they have been here since at least the early 1900s.
Dawlish has a good selection of shops of all types and its own Leisure Centre. At any time of day there's plenty of places to eat and drink, or if you want more creative diversion, try the Shaftesbury Theatre in Brunswick Place, which runs programmes all year. There are boat trips along the coast or up the Estuary, and Powderham Castle is on the doorstep.
Dawlish Carnival - held in August - is a hugely colourful event for locals and visitors alike.
More information at the Tourist Information Centre located at the end of the Lawn.
Dawlish Town Council:
- Website: www.dawlish.gov.uk
Dawlish Tourist Information Centre:
- Tel: 01626 215665