"Torquay" Top 5 Page for this destination Torquay by EasyMalc
Torquay Travel Guide: 186 reviews and 396 photos
What does Torquay conjure up in people's minds - holidays by the sea?, Fawlty Towers?, Agatha Christie? Well it's all these things and more.
With a population of around 64,000 it is the largest of the 3 Devon towns that make up the urban area of Torbay, the other 2 being Paignton and Brixham.
Even without including the population of Paignton and Brixham it is still the 3rd largest town in Devon after Plymouth and Exeter.
It has built itself a reputation for being a holiday destination and consequently has never become a major manufacturing or industrial centre. The traditional 2 weeks by the sea in Summer has changed over the years though and Torquay has now become more of a weekend destination or a couple of days away. Having said that the population still swells in the summer but not by as much as it used to.
Most people would think that Torquay doesn't have any history to speak of, and it's true to say that it wouldn't be spoken about in the same way as say, York or Chester, but scratch the surface and you could be surprised at what you might find.
For starters it has some of the oldest history in the country as you will discover if you visit the fascinating Kent's Cavern (see my Kents Cavern tip).
History in the modern sense though really started with the founding of Torre Abbey in 1196 and it was the Abbey's monks that built the first fishing quay that gave the town its name.
After the Dissolution of the Monasteries by Henry VIII nothing much happened until the early 19th cent. when the town started to become a fashionable holiday resort, helped in no small way by the extension of the railway line to the bay.
Many celebrated people were attracted here and Torquay gained the title of 'Queen of the English Riviera'. The Queen's tiara may not be sparkling quite so much these days but it's still a place that many people love to visit.
There are plenty of gaps in this brief history which I hope to plug during the course of writing these pages so please keep calling back to see what's new.
Did you know that:-
Sir Richard Francis Burton, translator of Arabian Nights and Kama Sutra was born in Torquay
Elizabeth Barrett Browning wrote De Profundis and The Cry of the Children whilst recuperating in Torquay
Isambard Kingdom Brunel wanted to live in Torquay but died before the house that he designed was built
Oscar Wilde wrote A Woman of No Importance whilst staying at Babbacombe
Nigel West, author of espionage books, was MP for Torbay
Peter Cook, the satirist and one half of Peter Cook and Dudley Moore, was born in Torquay
Miranda Hart, the sitcom comedienne was born in Torquay
Bruce Reynolds, the mastermind of the Great Train Robbery, was finally captured and arrested at his home in Torquay
Easymalc drinks here often
- Pros:Plenty of things to do
- Cons:Can be busy in Summer
- In a nutshell:A great place to stay for enjoying the South Devon Coastline
There are plenty of bars around Torquay Harbour but The Offshore is one of my favourites. It’s primarily a place to sit... more travel advice
I’m not sure if including the Princess Gardens and Pier as a ‘What to do’ tip is that relevant really because you’ll end... more travel advice
EasyMalc's Related Pages
Torquay Travel Guide
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- 32 Reviews
- 122 Photos
- 0 Forum posts
- 5 Comments
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