Torquay Harbour is sheltered by two piers. Princess Pier to the west and Haldon Pier to the south, a working pier. Princess Pier is a popular promenade complete with seating, and it also provides a favourable spot for anglers on the seaward side with views across Torre Abbey Sands, Corbyn Head, Livermead Head, Paignton and beyond. The harbour is regularly used by visiting yachts, pleasure boats, fishing vessels and other commercial workboats.
The inner harbour never dries out, tucked behind a tidal cill, a pedestrian footbridge known as Millennium Bridge. Many boats are moored there against the backdrop of stunning views of the sea surrounded by shops, restaurants and cafes. Below decks, the rooftop beer garden at the harvester, Twenty 1, Offshore and Wesup are a few of my favourite places to enjoy a meal and a drink.
Sadly Living Coasts announced it had to close permanently during the first Covid-19 lockdown, leaving a large space for something to replace it.
- Fishing within the harbour is prohibited, however anglers are welcome to fish from the seaward side of both Haldon and Princess Piers.
- Swimming and diving anywhere within Torquay Harbour is strictly prohibited
- Beacon Quay provides access to a modern and user friendly slipway, accessible at all states of the tide.
- Haldon & Princess may be called piers, but they are actually breakwaters.
- The harbour entrance is only 50 m wide.
- Anchoring is not allowed within the harbour.
- The Inner Harbour footbridge was built in 2003 and named the ‘Millennium Bridge’
- Extension to Haldon Pier completed in 1984.
- Princess Pier was built in 1890.
- Haldon Pier was built in 1867. It is an outer pier or breakwater, about 300m long. It gave the old harbour extra protection and created a large outer harbour. It cost nearly £70,000 and is an important part of the 19th century harbour at Torquay.
- The outer harbour was built in 1880.
The slipways on Beacon Quay were constructed as part of Operation Overlord, the springboard for the Allied invasion of German-occupied Europe, by Royal Engineers, 931 Port Construction and Repair Company and were completed on 28/5/1943. The American troops of 4th Division of 7 Corps used the slipways to embark for the crossing to ‘Utah’ beach in Normandy for the D-Day landings. From a string of such embarkation sites between 6 June and 30 June 1944 over 850,000 men were landed on the invasion beach-heads, together with nearly 150,000 vehicles and 570,000 tons of supplies. Extremely rare survivals, these slipways are possibly the best-surviving example of D-Day fabric in the country and form part of a significant group of listed structures.
- Beacon Quay
- Haldon Pier
- Millenium Bridge
- Princess Pier
- Princess Gardens
- Take in the sea views.
- Walk along the South West Coast Path.
- Below Decks
- Elephant restaurant (Michelin star)
- Harvester (rooftop beer garden)
- Twenty 1
Getting around is easy as it’s all on the level and wheelchair friendly.
- Car, There are a number of car parks to choose from. Three council run, Harbour, Beacon Quay & Meadfoot Road. The RingGo app may be used which allows ‘hands free’ payments to be made. Free parking is tricky and will involve a short walk, try lower or higher woodfield road.
- Bus, There are two companies running throughout the bay Stagecoach and Torbay Buses. A Stagecoach Dayrider is £5 for adults and £3.50 for a child, Area the ticket covers. The number 12 runs between Paignton, Torquay, Brixham and Newton Abbot. After 7PM ask for a Nightrider £2 until end of service. The Gold busses are fitted with wifi and usb charging ports for each seat. Friday & Saturdays the number 12 runs all night long (24 hours) for £3 return.
- Walk, The South West Coastal Path runs right through the middle of the harbour.
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