Dartmouth was always of strategic importance as a deep-water port for sailing vessels. The port was used as the sailing point for the crusades of 1147 and 1190; it has been a home of the English navy since the reign of Edward III.
The highlight of the boating year is Dartmouth Royal Regatta, each August bank holiday week, with racing for all kinds of craft, tours of navy ships, air displays and fireworks.
Today, Dartmouth is still all about boats and boasts not one, but two yacht clubs: the Royal Dart Yacht Club and the Dartmouth Yacht Club. You can learn to sail or power boat with Dart Harbour Sea School. Apart from the slipway at Warfleet creek itself, there is a larger slipway near the upper ferry in Dartmouth.
The River Dart is popular with canoeists, with many canoe-based wildlife tours available eg CanoeAdventures. Dartmouth Yacht Club also has a canoe section. With a sheltered launch point and a garage for storage, the apartment is an ideal base from which to explore both the river and the coast. Don’t forget to check the tides.
If you prefer to let someone else do the driving, River Link offer everything from a trip across to Kingswear, to cruises up the River Dart to Totnes or out along the coast. You can hire the Picnic Boat for a trip up the river or hire your own motor boat at Dartmouth Boat Hire.