Topsham Goat Walk
This lovely circular walk around Topsham visits the popular Goat Walk and the deligthful Bowling Green Marsh Nature Reserve. It's a very pretty area with views of the Exe Estuary and some excellent bird watching opportunites.
The walk starts at Topsham Quay and heads south along the river to the Topsham Museum. The noteworthy museum is located in one of a set of 17th century buildings looking out over the Exe Estuary. It consists of furnished period rooms, displays of the local history of the town and memorabilia of Vivien Leigh, the film star.
Soon after you pass the museum you come to the start of the Goat Walk. The narrow path runs along the river with a number of pretty cottages and fine views across the estuary. There's several benches along the way so you can relax and enjoy the views.
At Riversmeet House you turn east to enter the RSPB Bowling Green Marsh Nature Reserve which sits at the confluence of the River Exe and the River Clyst. In the reserve there are some nice trails to follow with birds such as avocets, lapwing and little egrets to look out for on the way. The site includes a bird hide on the marshes and a viewing platform, reached by steps.
The walk follows Bowling Green Road through the reserve towards the Clyst where you can follow Monmouth Street back to the Quay.
After your walk you can enjoy refreshments at the quayside Lighter Inn. There's a nice outdoor seating area where you can soak up the atmosphere of the quay in the summer months.
The Exe Estuary Trail passes through Topsham so you could pick up this excellent shared cycle and walking path to continue your walk. Heading south will take you to Exton and the village of Lympstone. It's another attractive riverside village which includes an Italianate riverfront brick clock tower built around 1885. If you head north you'll soon come into the city of Exeter.