The Tunnels Beaches

The Tunnels Beaches

Tunnels Beaches, Ilfracombe

Tunnels Beaches, Ilfracombe

Ilfracombe on the North Devon Coast can lay claim to one of the most unique collections of beaches and pools in the country. The Tunnels Beaches – originally six but today four great coastal tunnels were hand carved by Welsh miners in the 1820s. The Tunnels Beaches transformed what was a quiet fishing village into a popular seaside resort. Today they are an award-winning attraction with cafe blue bar, a play hut with indoor soft play area and a beach shop. The Tunnels Beaches coast is also a top spot for kayaking and you can even get married here under a thatched gazebo overlooking the sea! The beaches are licensed for civil ceremonies and civil partnerships.

The Tunnels Beaches are open daily from 10am to 7pm across the summer season, and they sit in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty holding both a Blue Flag and a Quality Coast Award. These are some of Devon’s safest beaches (sorry no dogs allowed). A full lifeguard service is in place during summer season and the attraction includes a gentle tidal sea water swimming pool perfect for children. The tidal pool has its own timetable – visible every three hours before and after each low tide!

Cafe Terrace area, Tunnels Beaches

Cafe Terrace area, Tunnels Beaches

Tunnels Beaches History

An Ilfracombe attraction that has been around since the resort’s earliest years has a few fascinating stories to tell. From good health and bath house facilities for ‘waifs, strays and worn out clergy’ – so said a local article of 1867 – to good etiquette, beach bathing huts and segregated bathing. The Tunnels Beaches have played an integral role in the development of Devon’s favourite Victorian heritage resort. Read the full history of the Tunnels Beaches in the free history booklet guide and swim in what has to be one of Britain’s most stunning cliff aqua settings!

Accommodation in Ilfracombe

  • Ilfracombe   (0.6 miles from the centre of Ilfracombe)
    Prices from
    £30
    Per Person, Per Night (B&B)
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 105 reviews
    Rating from 105 reviews
    Attractive, modestly priced Ilfracombe guest house. Award winners for hygiene and cleanliness. Spacious rooms. Delicious breakfasts. Free WiFi. Close to beach. Open June to Sept.
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  • Woolacombe   (2.8 miles from the centre of Ilfracombe)
    Sleeps 8
    Prices from
    £250
    Per week (seasonal) Sleep 2-8
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 145 reviews
    Rating from 145 reviews
    Charming mill conversion offering flexible self-catering cottage accommodation 2 miles from Woolacombe. Hotel restaurant & bar adjacent. WiFi, indoor pool, gym, games room & sauna.
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  • Woolacombe   (2.8 miles from the centre of Ilfracombe)
    Prices from
    £35
    Per person per night Room Only (2 sharing)
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 145 reviews
    Rating from 145 reviews
    Stunning 17th Century country house hotel near Woolacombe set within 44 acres. Perfect for weddings and functions, with indoor pool, gym, sauna, lounge bar, tennis and restaurant.
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  • Ilfracombe   (2.4 miles from the centre of Ilfracombe)
    Sleeps 6
    Prices from
    £299
    Per week (seasonal) Sleeps 6
     
    Spacious ground floor 3 bed cottage at Watermouth Cove near Combe Martin, pet and family friendly with private patio, BBQ and stunning gardens. WiFi available. Sleeps 6.
     
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  • Ilfracombe   (2.4 miles from the centre of Ilfracombe)
    Sleeps 8
    Prices from
    £349
    Per week (seasonal) Sleeps 6+2
     
    Spacious family and pet friendly cottage at Watermouth Cove near Combe Martin set in a wooded valley just a short distance from Watermouth Castle. Beautiful gardens. Sleeps 6+2.
     
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  • Ilfracombe   (2.3 miles from the centre of Ilfracombe)
    Sleeps 4
    Prices from
    £379
    Per Week (seasonal) Sleeps 4
     
    Two bedroom cottage at Watermouth Cove near Combe Martin, pet and family friendly set in a wooded valley with beautiful gardens. Cosy log burner, patio and BBQ. Sleeps 4.
     
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  • Ilfracombe   (0.3 miles from the centre of Ilfracombe)
    Prices from
    £33
    Per person per night B&B (based on 2 sharing)
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 40 reviews
    Rating from 40 reviews
    Special Offer
    4 for 3 night midweek breaks off peak
    Independent Ilfracombe hotel within award-winning grounds, a short distance from the seafront. Private illuminated pathway direct to the High Street. Restaurant, bar and parking.
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  • Ilfracombe   (2.3 miles from the centre of Ilfracombe)
    Sleeps 8
    Prices from
    £309
    Price Per Week (seasonal) Sleep 2-8
     
    8 Pretty cottages 200 yds from the sea, Watermouth Cove, Castle & coastal path. Pet friendly. 4 poster beds. Log burners. Nr Combe Martin, Ilfracombe & Exmoor. Sleep 2-8 people.
     
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  • Lee   (1.5 miles from the centre of Ilfracombe)
    Sleeps 5
    Prices from
    £308
    Per week (seasonal), sleeps 5
     
    Delightful two bedroom Ilfracombe holiday cottage set overlooking the Fuchsia Valley with lovely shared garden, games room, off road parking, laundry facilities & short breaks.
     
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    Self Rated
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  • Ilfracombe   (0.1 miles from the centre of Ilfracombe)
    Sleeps 5
    Prices from
    £330
    Per week (seasonal), sleeps 5
     
    Character Victorian apartment in Ilfracombe with 3 bedrooms, 2 bath/ shower rooms, laundry facilities & Freeview TV. 2 minute walk to amenities. Short breaks. No pets.
     
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