Welcome to the English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark!

We would love you to escape the everyday by visiting and exploring our beautiful bay. We've put together some tips for making the most of your stay on the English Riviera.

Click here to find out more 

The English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark

The whole of Torbay has been designated a Geopark in 2007 by UNESCO because of our unique and often spectacular geology and natural environment.

While many of the 161 UNESCO Global Geoparks around the world are in remoter areas, often away from towns and cities, the English Riviera Geopark is fairly unique in that it also happens to encompass one of the UK’s most popular seaside resorts. It is one of only two ‘urban’ geoparks in the UK.

The Geopark not only covers 6,200 hectares of land (10 square miles) but also 4,100 hectares (6.5 square miles) of seabed. Whilst geology may be at the heart of the designation, Geoparks also encompass other areas of heritage, including history, culture, archaeology and biodiversity.

There is also a strong environmental element to a Geopark’s designation that calls for the area to be managed responsibly in terms of conservation and sustainable development. Education is also central, as is working with the local people to ensure the geopark becomes a becomes a better place to live, work and visit.

Find out how to enjoy the Geopark responsibly here

UNESCO Global Geoparks share the story of our Planet.

A Geopark is an area of globally recognised, unique geological interest designated by UNESCO.  A place where you can touch a very special part of the Earth's story and be amazed by the extraordinary landscapes, mountains, coastlines, places and people. 

Our Geopark, covering the entire area of Torbay, is Naturally Inspiring.  It shares stories of a landscape untouched by glaciation unseen elsewhere in the world. Stories of tropical seas and scorching deserts, raised beaches and drowned forests, hippopotami and mammoth, straight-tusked elephant and sabre-toothed tiger, cave bear and earliest man...

News from the Geopark

21 May

The English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark Festival returns

The annual festival is a celebration of the international significance of the area’s Geopark status.
6 May

Geopark Festival 2022

The UNESCO Global Geopark status is something which really makes The English Riviera a unique place to visit. Come and celebrate with us during the Geopark Festival, which runs from Thursday 26 May to Thursday 2 June
25 Apr

Devon’s Geopark marks Earth Day by launching new Environmental and Marine User Policies

31 Mar

Hundreds support Torbay’s Earth Hour event

Around 600 people came down with lanterns to celebrate Earth Hour, a global environmental event.
7 Mar

Support Earth Hour in Torbay – as Council commits £1m to tackling climate change

Residents in Torbay are being encouraged by English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark and us to mark Earth Hour by turning off their lights at home and heading down to Torre Abbey Sands in Torquay to join a unique event, the first of its kind in the Bay.
15 Jul


Our Geopark Partners rallied togther to make this scaled down version of the annual festival a big success.
4 Dec

Visual Guides reassure as English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark Sites re-open

The English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark has worked with partners and Living Options, an Exeter based charity, to create a suite of ten visual guides to help people feel comfortable and confident when they visit sites around the Geopark.
10 Nov

English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark launches video series on World Science Day to unravel the facts behind the UNESCO designation

Over the seven Geopark In Focus episodes Professor Iain Stewart MBE engages in relaxed discussions with fascinating people, each with a different insight into why this coastal area of England is so unique.
More news...

Events in the Geopark

12 Apr -
30 Aug

Cockington Ranger Nature Club

Cockington Country Park
Explore nature with us in Cockington Country Park! With a different activity each session,...
13 Apr -
31 Aug

Kids Cookery

Occombe Farm
Get cooking on the farm at our Cookery School! Each month there will be a new theme to get the...
11 Jun -
3 Sep

Titanic Exhibition

Torquay Museum
In this special exhibition created by Titanic Exhibitions view artefacts from the ship, explore...
25 Jun -
4 Sep

Brilliant Bees and their Curious Cousins

Torre Abbey
This summer Torre Abbey will be all abuzz with an engaging exhibition celebrating bees. Brilliant...
23 Jul -
4 Sep

Stone Age Summer

Kents Cavern
Head to the caves this summer for some Stone Age themed activities for all the family! CAVOG...
26 Jul -
26 Aug

Cave Cinema

Kents Cavern
Classic films and family favourites in the South West's only pop-up underground cinema. Tuesday...
3 Aug -
31 Oct

Cockington Court Sculpture Trail: Insects Descend

Cockington Court, Torquay, TQ2 6XA
IT’S BACK! And this year’s trail is INSECT THEMED! Come and explore and you’ll...
12 Aug

Discovering Jellyfish

Fishcombe Cove Cafe
We've seen lots of beautiful jellyfish in our waters as of late, some species sting, some of them...
10 Sep -
25 Oct

Devon Open Studios

Various - across the Geopark and beyond
If you are an art lover looking for creative and interesting people and places, then a cornucopia...
15 - 22 Oct

English Riviera Walking Festival

Pack your rucksacks, fill your flasks, dig out your walking boots and join us at the inaugural...