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How long will my Devon coast path walk take?

On a walking holiday, you may know how far you’re planning to hike each day, but how long will it take? This is a good question to ask when planning your walking route, as you’ll want to enjoy the experience and to avoid exhaustion and a late arrival at your destination.

How long - this will depend on a number of factors:- your level of fitness and length of stride; how many stops you take; the underfoot conditions; climbs and descents and , of course, weather conditions. Here are a few pointers to working out when to set off and when you’ll arrive at your destination.

Average speeds advise that the average adult walking pace is 2.5 mph (4 kmph) on flat ground. But we’re all different so yours could be less or more – perhaps a range from 1.75 to 3.25 mph (2.8 – 5.2 kmph). You can work out your kmph out by timing yourself walking 100m and multiplying the time by 10.

Climbs and descents

These will impact your timings as well as your muscles and joints! You can expect to slow by up to 30% on inclines above 12 degree gradient. So if your average pace is 2.5 mph (4 kmph) this could slow to 1.75 mph (2.8kmph) during the incline. And bear in mind going downhill is not always easier or quicker; steep descents are often more tricky and time-consuming.

Underfoot conditions

Your pace on a relatively flat and well-maintained surface will be faster than on a more rugged rocky terrain, or when it’s sandy or muddy underfoot.


Check the forecast for the area of your walk before you set out – not just for rain but also wind strength and direction. Walking into a stiff breeze will slow you down. Changes in weather may also prompt temporary sheltering or changes in clothing which will add time to your hike.

Fitness and stops

If you’re only used to shorter walks, your pace may drop towards the end of a longer day’s hike. Also it’s important to factor time in for breaks, whether for food and drink, toilet stops or just to spend a few moments admiring the views.


Know your limitations and those of your hiking companions and plan accordingly. Set a realistic estimated time of arrival (ETA) and, if on a linear walking holiday, let your next accommodation know this ETA. You may find apps like Strava or Komoot useful in working out your standard walking pace and recording the sections of your walk as you go.

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