Dart Valley Trail
The Dart Valley Trail explores the navigable stretch of the River Dart in Devon's South Hams, between the historic ports of Dartmouth and Kingswear near the mouth of the river and the ancient town of Totnes at the Dart's lowest road crossing. A little unusually, the trail covers both sides of the river in the lower part of the valley, south of the National Trust's Greenway estate on the east bank and the village Dittisham on the west bank. North of Dittisham, the trail sticks to the west side of the river.
To make this a linear walk, I started at Greenway, walking the short 7.2km eastern leg southward to Kingswear on the first afternoon, then walking the 18.5km western leg from Dartmouth to Totnes the following afternoon. There are several minor hills on the walk, but nothing too taxing, and most walkers should be capable of doing the entire walk in one day if time is limited. However, that would leave little time to explore — and there are many places on or near the trail that are definitely worth exploring.
On the eastern side of the river, the trail passes through the Greenway estate, with it's attractive views up and down the river, then runs through ancient woodland before following the riverbank alongside Dartmouth Harbour to the pedestrian ferry crossing from Kingswear to Dartmouth. The western leg of the trail climbs out of Dartmouth before traversing a series of gentle hills separated by small villages and languid creeks. The River Dart, steeped in maritime history, is never far away.
Greenway and Kingswear are most easily reached on the Paignton & Dartmouth Steam Railway, while Dartmouth has buses to Totnes and Totnes has a station on the railway line between Plymouth and Exeter. I was staying in Torquay (though it would obviously have been better to stay in Kingswear or Dartmouth), so I used the steam train to reach the walk on both days.
The trail itself is very well-signposted and despite carrying the relevant Ordnance Survey map, I can only recall consulting it to find out where the pubs were.