The River Yealm estuary

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Devon, England

The River Yealm estuary Devon Reviews

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564 reviews
Gems almost hidden Nov 25, 2012
Thr River Yealm can hardly be described as one of Britain's great rivers, the biggest of which does not compare with the longest European rivers, never mind rivers like the Nile, the Yangtse and the Mississippi. The Yealm's total length is only about 12 miles from where it rises on Dartmoor and then flows through wooded valleys and agricultural land to its estuary.

Nor can the beauty of the estuary be appreciated except from its very banks. On the west there is no view because it is hidden by the cliffs around Wembury. Even from much of the sea it is hidden by the (Great) Mewstone Island. I am sorry I have no photos. Most of my visits were in my boyhood and my teens but you will find enough photos if you look up the strangely named villages of Newton Ferrers and Noss Mayo in a good search engine.

The area's appeal at low tide is only for those who like nosing around in mud to see beach life but at high tide the scenery is stunning. Strangely enough it is very readily accessible by bus from Plymouth. The claim in one Noss Mayo website that it only takes 15 minutes to Plymouth seems fanciful to me - unless it relates to the city boundary - but it is near anyway. The point is that most visitors to my home city of Plymouth have never heard of Noss Mayo, Newton Ferrers or the Yealm so the buses are hardly ever crowded.

Cellar Beach and further Stoke Beach can be reached by walking from Noss for anybody reasonably fit. When I was engaged to my late wife, we had an afternoon on Cellar beach entirely to ouselves in great weather and I am guessing that it is often no busier now.
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