Cycle Route 2 (max 22 miles)

Cycle Route 2 (max 22 miles)

The Exe Estuary Trail circular route from Kennford

This route is fairly level (along the banks of the Exe Estuary from Exmouth) with a few rolling hills at the start and end, on quiet country roads through the Kenn Valley down to Starcross. On a sunny day the ferry is a treat – with views of the Dawlish coastline (looking across to Dawlish Warren Nature Reserve, and a view from the mouth of the Exe (Exmouth) up to the old port of Exeter.

Map: refer to the Exe Estuary Trail map, which you will find in the Information pack.

Ferry: The Starcross ferry is found over the Starcross railway bridge, leaving at 10 minutes past the hour from 10am from April to October and, if you wish to return the same way, they depart Exmouth at 40 minutes past the hour (NOTE the last ferry is at 5:40pm).

Start point: Cherry Tree Cottage, Kennford Directions

Kennford to Starcrosss (allow up to 40 minutes)

  1. From the cottage head down the hill, passing the village post office on your right, to Pye Corner and turn right into Kenn Lane, signed for Kenton. Continue along Kenn Lane passing Kenn Church on your left and the Ley Arms on your right. Keep straight ahead for another mile until you reach the first crossroads (Willsworthy).

  2. From Willsworthy turn right (direction sign is missing) and go over Babels Bridge and continue straight on through the lane for approx 3 miles, continuing straight on ignoring any other junctions, until you reach the main road, where you meet a crossroads at Black Forest.

  3. Turn left at Black Forest, signed to Starcross and Kenton (beware this can be a busy road). Ride downhill for 2 miles to the junction.

  4. At the bottom turn left (New Road) and continue for 1⁄4 mile and just before you reach the main road (A379) turn left into Well Street (NCR Cycle route 2), which then turns right to meet the A379. Cross the road at the pedestrian crossing.

  5. The ferry is found at the far end of the station platform (carry your bike over the railway bridge). The ferry timings are shown above. The cost for a single is £4.50 for an adult plus £1.00 for bicycles.

  6. On a sunny day Exmouth has much to enjoy, with a sandy beach and lovely views across to Dawlish and Starcross and Mamhead. There is a cycle lane all the way to the end of the Esplanade (approx 2 miles).

Exmouth to Topsham (allow up to 45 minutes with no stops!)

  1. To return find the start of the NCR 2 cycle way, found adjacent to Exmouth bus and train stations alongside the A376 Exeter Road. The cycle path soon diverts away from the road and goes through a small park, then bears sharp left at the junction of Mudbank Lane to meet a clearly marked path at the side of the railway alongside the Estuary.

  2. As you proceed through the pretty village of Lympstone (21⁄2 miles), and past the Swan Inn, the route (NCR2) continues to be clearly marked, heading to Topsham and Exeter. You will pass through Exton, where the route deviates from the Estuary for 1⁄2 mile, passing the Puffing Billy pub/restaurant and then turning left and up a short hill. The route then rejoins the Estuary.
  3. Continue for approx 1 mile where you will reach a junction. From here you can opt to bear right and visit Dart’s Farm Shopping Village (1⁄2 mile) or bear left to continue on our route through Topsham. 

  4. You will soon reach a lane, where you turn right to cycle up Bowling Green Road. At the top there are options to turn left and cycle through via Topsham down Monmouth Street (1 mile deviation) or continue to the end of the road to turn left at Elm Grove Road.

  5. For whichever route you opt for you can easily pick up the NCR 2 cycle route, signed to Exeter. This will take you along Exeter Road (the cycle route is on the right and passes Topsham Rugby ground). After approx 1 mile the cycle path crosses back over Exeter Road just after Plants Galore Nursery. Continue to follow the NCR2 Exeter route, turning left into a housing estate at Higher Wear Road, and then right into Lakeside Avenue.

  6. At the end again, follow the NCR2, crossing Glasshouse Lane to reach Lower Wear Road. When the road bears right you will reach the main road (Bridge Road). As there is no cycle/pedestrian path at this point cross the road at the crossing and cycle down over the bridge (over the River Exe). At the second bridge you cross the main road again, picking up the NCR2 signed for Turf Lock and Dawlish.

  7. The route now follows with the Exeter Canal on your left, passing the Topsham foot ferry, to Exminster Marshes car park (approx 3 miles). This is where you leave the NCR2 through a metalled lane on your right (unsigned), through a nature reserve for 2 miles. You will go over a railway bridge and pass the Swan’s Nest pub to reach the main Exeter/Dawlish road.

  8. Go straight over the roundabout to Exminster and again straight over at a mini roundabout, passing the Royal Oak pub. The road climbs a little and then drops down past Berrybrook Motors. As the road rises into the main village turn left into Days Pottle Lane and cycle for 2 miles, passing Days Pottle Farm and over the A38 to reach the junction with the A379.

  9. On reaching the A379 turn left, passing the garage, and cycle back along the path adjacent the A379, turning right and passing Partridge Cycles into Kennford.