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The Spanish Boathouse on the River Dart, Secluded With Glorious Sunsets



Updated: 04-Sep-2016
Riverside Cottage in Galmpton, near Dartmouth, England - Peaceful Location On The River, 5 Minutes To The Beach and Mooring Available

This is a beautifully renovated boat house on the water's edge in the charming village of Galmpton, 3 miles upstream from Dartmouth. Decorated to the highest standards, this holiday cottage offers peace, tranquillity and endless changing views of the river. With only the main house and yachts on the pontoon within 100 yards, the only other neighbours are the fish in the river and the birds flying overhead. You may get the occasional hat tilt from a passing boatman. A short walk into the village will find you at the village shop, or a few yards on, the village pub, all filled with welcoming locals. The cottage is also ideally located for Agatha Christie's mansion, a National Trust run property, and the new Steam Railway station which will take you to Kingswear from where you can take the ferry to Dartmouth. A truly magnificent part of the country.

  • Sleeps 4
  • 1 Bedroom
  • 1 Bathroom
  • Parking
  • Garden
  • Barbecue
  • Dish washer
  • Washing machine
  • Bookable online

Top Traveller Review

About the Owner

We bought Cliff Cottage ten years ago and have finally got round to transforming the detached boat shed, The Spanish Boat House, into a luxurious river retreat. It is located to the front of the main property so I will always be on hand for guests so if you ever need anything or have any questions about the local area. The home cries out for long lazy evenings, sitting outside with a glass of wine, watching the sun go down over the river, a truly magnificent place.

Call Owner
Speaks English, French, German, Italian, Dutch

Guestbook comments from the owner

Dear Mr Gray,

Sadly (and frustratingly) I have tried unsuccessfully to add a review to both of these sites but have failed when both asked for a password (which I’ve either forgotten or never had!) I asked ownersdirect for a replacement password (and even phoned them – but the person seemed not to know what I was taking about) I’ve never received a reply to the automatic requests.

Really as much as I’d like to help I’ve given enough time to fruitlessly trying to fill in these forms. I don’t know if it helps you but here is my review.

Haven of peace and quiet.

‘A well appointed conversion of an old boathouse with a excellent bathroom. Views across the inlet are wonderful with the added bonus of a view up the Dart Estuary. I particularly liked being so closed to the rise and fall of the tides, sitting on the terrace - life to a different beat. The local shop had just about everything I needed and a short drive to Brixham gave me access to a wider range of shops. There is a great pub, a short walk away (although watch out for the tides), serving excellent local food and beers. Parking the car at the boathouse takes some skill as there is a rather switchback access road but by the end of the week I had become quite proficient. Overall I had a wonderful break, with some interesting walking locally and on Dartmoor.’

Best regards,

Oct 2014
  • 1 of 1

1 Reviews

1 holidaymaker review

Kent, UK

Oh how we loved this hidden Devonshire jewel!

  • 5 of 5

Oh how we loved this place! If you’re searching for something a little different ... off the beaten track of mainstream popular holiday ‘havens’ ... then this oasis of peace, tranquility and spectacular views is definitely for you. Once through the village of Galmpton, the Spanish Boathouse is reached down narrow, winding lanes rising steeply as you approach your destination on the rustic quayside. Galmpton Creek has the wonderfully rugged, gritty feel of an authentic Devonshire waterside community – home of boat builders, past and present, with a history stretching back to the time of the Spanish Armada. Once at the Boathouse, Bobby your host, is very helpful but also stays discretely out of sight. The accommodation is well planned and comfortably equipped but the absolute highlight is the private terrace reached by the bi-folding glass doors. Choose to either curl up on the sofa and soak up the view from indoors or kick-back outside on the terrace with a glass of something chilled as you watch the breathtaking sunset. The quiet privacy and seclusion are rare treasures - we heard nothing more than birdsong and the occasional passing boat leaving or returning to the creek. The light on the water, ebb and flow of the tide and amazing wildlife are a stress-busting tonic. Your binoculars will be well used! The great location of the Spanish Boathouse meant we rarely used our car, instead walking the trails to the beautiful and atmospheric ‘Greenway’ (home of Agatha Christie) or taking the steam train to link up with river cruise system, which enabled us to explore the treats of Dartmouth and the surrounding area. A week at The Spanish Boathouse was just what we needed to recharge our batteries and I am absolutely sure we will be returning. Highly recommended!

  • Review Submitted: Jun 2, 2015
  • Date of Stay: May 2015
  • Source: Owners Direct, from HomeAway
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From the Owner

We bought Cliff Cottage, the main house, in 2002 after deciding to relocate to Devon to run a Nursing Home. Cliff Cottage was perfect, a beautiful building, lots of potential, and situated on Galmpton Creek with views right over the river and a stone's throw from Agatha Christie's mansion at Greenway. The sunsets over the river are breathtaking, turning the sky are wild fire orange, or flamboyant pink. Even after 10 years we still take photos! Galmpton itself is a beautiful Devon village, complete with small village shop, excellent butchers and The Manor Inn, famous for their friendly locals, food and ale (they are Casque marked). Located 20 miles from the M5, the main house and holiday cottage are completely secluded with no neighbours (except the fish!) and private off street parking.

Activity and Interests

Nearest Airport : Exeter at 30 Miles Nearest Barpub : Manor Inn Galmpton at 0.8 Miles Nearest Ferry : Greenway for Dartmouth and Dittisham at 1.7 Miles Nearest Golf : Churston Golf Club at 1.2 Miles Nearest Train : Churston steam railway station at 1.3 Miles Nearest Motorway : to A380 dual carriageway for M5 at 2 Miles Nearest Restaurant : Manor Inn Galmpton at 0.8 Miles Nearest Beach : Broadsands at 2 Miles Car: recommended

Special interest holidays:

Dartmouth Royal Regatta and August Bank Holiday are usually the last two weeks of August

The area is perfect for all kinds of water sports and the property has a dinghy ladder up to the verandah. Mooring can be arranged on adjacent tidal pontoon (with bilge keels) or on dart harbour deep channel moorings with dinghy access. Owners have double kayak, 4hp rubber dinghy and sport boat which may ocaisionally be available by arrangement with appropriate qualifications.


The nearest beach is Broadsands Beach, approximately 2 miles away or 5 mins by car. This is a large beach complete with cafe and Devon ice cream kiosk. There is also a smaller more secluded pebble beach, Elbury cove, a short walk from Broadsands car park. Many other beaches are a short drive from the property, I highly recommend Bantham towards Kingsbridge. If available, you could also hop into the boat moored at the cottage and head to Dartmouth or explore Torbay and the South Hams beaches.


The nearest Railway Station is Paignton which has trains from London Paddington or most destinations in the country when changing at Exeter or Newton Abbot. Totnes is 7 miles away, where the fast train from London Paddington passes through. The nearest airport is Exeter, however due to poor public transport to Galmpton, we would recommend taking a taxi. The use of a car would be recommended.


The property is approx 1 mile from Agatha Christie's mansion and the steam railway. Galmpton Creek lies 3 miles from Dartmouth by boat, beautiful town with elegant shops and fine dining waterfront restaurants or Kingswear is 5 miles by car and from there take the ferry to Dartmouth. The seaside towns of Paignton and Torquay are 4 and 6 miles. Totnes is 7 miles - an historic town with a hippie vibe, beautiful buildings, boutiques and excellent restaurants.

Exeter and Plymouth are 40 minutes.

Further Details:

There is a village shop, post office and butcher within Galmpton village which should be able to provide everything you need. There is also a large Sainsbury ten minutes drive from the property. The nearest restaurants / village pubs are The Manor Inn, Galmpton (up the hill - 15 minutes walk) and the Ferry Boat Inn in Dittisham (over the river, 7 minutes at 6 knots or by foot ferry from Greenway Quay, both serving superb food and beer. They often have local live music acts playing on the weekend and you will always be greeted with a smile.

Most major banks can be found in Brixham, ten minutes drive from the property.

We would recommend Torquay, Dartmouth or Totnes for the best dining experience. There are far too many places to explore to list them here, however you can have a browse through the Devon Life in the property to have a see for yourself.

Obviously, the perfect place for water sports or walking along the coastal path. We are also a short drive from Dartmoor National Park.


Rental rates

Convert Currency
Rental Period Minimum Price Additional Nights Weekend Night Weekly Monthly Event Price
Late Season
1 Oct 2016 - 28 Oct 2016
7 night minimum stay
for 7 nights
Low Season
29 Oct 2016 - 16 Dec 2016
7 night minimum stay
for 7 nights
My Standard Rate

Changeover Day: Saturday
7 night minimum stay
for 7 nights

Additional pricing information

Pet Fee £25

Booking Notes:
We require 50% non-refundable deposit at the time of booking, and the balance 6 weeks before arrival.

Changeover Day:
Changeover day is Saturday however please do get in contact if you would like to alter this as we can make allowances if there are no bookings either side. Arrival times are from 4pm and departure is at 10am. Early arrivals to be requested in advance.

Owner's Cancellation Policy

100% refund for cancellations more than 30 days before check-in date.
Enter dates for accurate pricing
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Updated: 04-Sep-2016
Available arrival


From the Owner

The property offers complete relaxation, it is nearly a mile to the nearest main road (a ten minute walk to shops and pub). As it is built on/ over the river, every window has a river view. Even when the tide is out, you can watch the ducks and other river birds foraging for wildlife. The holiday cottage has been built to the highest specification, complete with underfloor heating, "Rain shower" style shower head with separate shower hose fitted over a stylish bath, induction hob and fan oven/ electric grill, washing machine/ dryer, slimline dishwasher, a boat mooring and even a step ladder down to the water should you feel brave enough to take a dip! At the rear of the property, there is a completely private terrace built over the river with garden furniture and built in bbq.

Property Type

  • cottage


  • Heating
  • Iron & Board
  • Living Room ...
  • Parking
  • Tumble Dryer
  • Washing Machine


  • Dishwasher
  • Freezer
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave
  • Oven
  • Refrigerator
  • Hob


  • Child's Highchair


  • Television

Location Type

  • near the sea
  • rural
  • village
  • waterfront


  • autumn foliage
  • bay
  • caves
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • forests
  • library
  • live theatre
  • marina
  • museums
  • playground
  • recreation centre
  • restaurants
  • ruins
  • theme parks
  • water parks
  • winery tours
  • zoo

Leisure Activities

  • beachcombing
  • bird watching
  • paddle boating
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking

Local Services & Businesses

  • ATM/bank
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • medical services

Sports & Adventure Activities

  • cycling
  • deepsea fishing
  • fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf
  • mountain biking
  • pier fishing
  • sailing
  • diving
  • snorkelling
  • bay fishing
  • swimming
  • water skiing
  • water tubing


  • Bathroom 1 - Toilet, Bath (no shower), Shower Enclosure
  • En-suite bathroom with separate access from hallway with stylish over bath shower, wc, slate floors and warm ceramic wall tiles.


  • 1 Bedroom, Sleeps 4
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 Cot
  • Description of sleeping capacity: Sleeps 4 (1 Bedroom) Notes on bedrooms: Master bedroom with 1 double bed and en-suite.


  • Golf ...
  • Garden
  • Barbecue

Learn more about this holiday rental at the owner's website


  • Notes on accommodation: There is WiFi but minimal phone signal on the creek (some may call this a blessing!), and although the holiday cottage is overlooked by the main house, the only people who will be able to see in through the windows or on to your private terrace are the odd passing boatmen! If you would like to use any of the larger outside spaces, please ask in the main house, we would be happy to oblige. Outside: The cottage has it's own secluded private terrace, perfectly situated directly over the river, with views to Dittisham on the other side, and front row seats for the magnificent sunsets. The terrace comes with a built in bbq, table and chairs and is fully enclosed with beautiful glass balustrading. There is a larger garden attached to the main house which you are welcome to use upon agreement, and also a large roof terrace with glass balustrading with a four-seater teak table and chairs - a wonderful place to sunbathe! or just watch the local birdlife - an eclectic mix of sea, river and country birds - gulls, ducks, egrets, heron, swans, cormorants, waders, geese, owls, hawks, kingfishers ... Utility Room: In the entrance are, there is a washer/ dryer and coat/ boot cupboard Cleaning / Towels / Linen / Maid service: Towels and linen are included (except swimming / beach towels) and will be changed once a week. The property will be cleaned upon departure. If you would like additional laundry / cleaning services, please contact us.

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