Welcome to the English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark!

Explore our Geopark - Interactive Map

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 195 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 62.4km2 land but also 41.5km2 of the marine area of Torbay. 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

6 Dec

A Greener Way for Our Bay – Have your say

The new consultation – ‘A Greener Way For Our Bay’ – aims to engage with local people on the Torbay Climate Partnership’s new plans for reducing the Bay’s emissions and preparing for a changing climate. The Partnership is made up of a wide range of organisations in Torbay from the public, private, community and voluntary sectors.
17 Oct


Geopark Partners Kents Cavern are  delighted to announce that Kents Cavern has officially become part of the Tudor Hotels Collection
4 Oct

Geodiversity Day 2023

18 Sep

Torbay's Local Heritage Grant Scheme - first round of grants awarded

The first of Torbay’s Local Heritage Grants have been awarded to 12 projects in Brixham, Paignton and Torquay. These range from visitor improvements for both the historic Brixham Battery and Torquay Museum, and community projects in Paignton; to literary inspired murals, podcasts, heritage days and innovative projects exploring our geological history across the English Riviera’s UNESCO designated environment.
3 Aug

Exciting season of creative and cultural events for Paignton

A major series of creative events has been announced for Torbay. The four-week programme titled Open Season is part of Torbay’s Cultural Development Fund project focused on Paignton Picture House.
25 Jul


-    New map launched that includes all 58 UK UNESCO sites for the first time

-    Map illustration by artist Tom Woolley

-    Visitors encouraged to discover new sites and destinations on their doorstep

14 Jul

The English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark prepares for UNESCO inspection.

Every four years a team of two UNESCO Global Geopark representatives chosen from across the globe conduct a formal revalidation inspection on the English Riviera’s geopark status.

4 Jul

Funding for new Geopark Discovery Trails and Experiences

UKSPF funding will see the creation of new Geopark walking trails and experiences. Led by the English Riviera BID Company.
More news...