Woody Bay

Woody Bay - Devon
© David Mason and licensed for reuse under this Licence

Woody Bay, on the rugged Exmoor Coast, certainly lives up to its name. The rocky cove is backed by steep, heavily wooded cliffs.

The walk down to the beach is as much of a delight as the cove itself; the path zig-zags through the woods, passing some amusing signage on the way.

Around a hundred years ago Woody Bay was earmarked for development as a holiday resort to rival neighbouring Lynton and Lynmouth. The owner built a pier to allow ferries to dock and a golf course to attract wealthy visitors. However, things went into reverse when the pier was damaged by storms and the owner ran out of money, eventually ending up dying in prison.
Today, all that remains of the Woody Bay empire is the hotel, and of course the lovely sylvanian cove.

Type of beach

Shingle & rock

Lifeguard service


Dogs friendly beach?

Dogs allowed

No dog restrictions.

Devon dog friendly beaches »


  • Swimming/bathing
  • Rock pooling

Nearest town



EX31 4QX

OS grid ref.

SS 6803 4893


A small car park at the top of the access parth

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Woody Bay Reviews

May 31st 2020

Check the tide times as very little space at high tide!! Fantastic beach !

Lovely pool

Oct 01st 2019

Great pool, great waterfall,  access is difficult,  steap zig zag path and very slippery last bit


Puppy Dog
Feb 16th 2024

A stunning area, wild, remote and rugged, just the way I prefer it.

Jul 01st 2019

Amazing, secret beach. Hard to get to but worth the hike.

Rita Emmery
Sep 15th 2021

It’s got no sand, very rocky, doesn’t get much sun because of the high cliffs. Not good to get to and once there you wonder why you bothered.