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Dartmouth Royal Regatta – a regatta unlike any other…

The end of August every year brings with it the Dartmouth Regatta but what is it about this event which marks it down as an event that simply must not be missed?
Dartmouth offers visitors something very special whenever they choose to visit, but during the three days of the (held the last Thursday, Friday and Saturday in August) you will be well and truly entertained.

Held in the historic port, the Dartmouth Regatta has plenty of shore-side activities as well as the sailing regatta and rowing races to cheer on. The event includes a tennis tournament, a Regatta Grand Ball and an air display with a visit by the . The Royal Navy team from RNAS Yeovilton will also be bringing the legendary Sea Fury aircraft to the regatta.

Children can enjoy watching Barrel Rolling, Water Polo and the parade of boats competing for Best Dressed Yacht and Dinghy prizes. There’s a junior Scavenger hunt, Crab fishing, Waiters and Waitresses Race and a stunning Illuminated River procession with just a touch of magic in the air for this spectacular sight.

Get set for the Photography Competition and stay late to enjoy a great night out with live bands such as duo Mitch and Mace who are regular performers as part of the Regatta Rock. After the prizes and trophies have all been dished out, the event ends with fireworks.

Driving to the Dartmouth Regatta

The drive through Churston to get the Dartmouth ferry is what being in England is all about; you are greeted by the most wonderful English countryside which goes on for miles. If you take a look over your shoulder, the sea can be seen in the distance and it is always a joy to see the expression on someone’s face for the first time when the drive down the winding road towards the ferry turns the final corner and Dartmouth is displayed in all of its glory.

The regatta takes place on the weekend in August every year with one of the many highlights being the aerial display by the Red Arrows at 6pm on the Friday evening. Whenever you choose to visit the Dartmouth Regatta you should expect it to be very busy indeed. The car parks get very full, very quickly and for anyone who insists on arriving by car the advice would have to be to arrive in Dartmouth as early as possible and to make a day of it.

Eating out in Dartmouth

Why not book a meal at one of the fantastic restaurants which Dartmouth is famous for? Perhaps you fancy Mitch Tonk’s , which can be found on the Embankment, or the highly acclaimed The Angel restaurant which can also be found nearby?

Here’s a tip though – if you are looking for a good meal in Dartmouth but are not really keen on paying the kind of prices that these top restaurants are able to charge, a short walk from the waterside will take you to Lower Street. Here you will find , a fish and chip shop that is also owned by the famous chef and just as you may expect, it is a fish and chips treat unlike any other that you have experienced, at a price which will most definitely not break the bank.

Fireworks and fair rides at the Dartmouth Regatta

OK, now you are fed and watered, let’s get back to the regatta. The fireworks display which is held on the Thursday evening is also a little different to anything else that you might have experienced. Whilst it would be fair to say that these kind of displays seem to crop up all of the time, this one is so intense that you can feel the ground vibrating underneath your feet as the fireworks explode in midair, with the backdrop of the illuminated boats on the river. A frequently heard comment from visitors to Dartmouth is that they have never really seen anything quite like it.

A special mention should also be made of the fair which is in place during the Dartmouth Regatta. Close to the water, the view from some of the rides is quite astounding. It is just one of the reasons why people return to the Dartmouth Regatta year after year, because this event really does stand out from the rest.

Are you a regatta lover? If so which ones would you advise people to make a note of in their diary to attend, and why?

About Gillian Birch

Born in Cheshire, Gillian Birch moved to Cornwall at her earliest opportunity and never looked back. After 20 years, her ongoing discovery of popular attractions, quiet footpaths and local eateries has made her a fount of knowledge as she entertains readers with her informative articles on the hidden gems of Devon & Cornwall from a local point-of-view.

Find Gillian on Google+, and Twitter.

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