The location of attractions is intended only as a guide. Distances are 'as the crow flies'.
Try the pies at this handsome Victorian Devon inn with pool table and beer garden. Sunday night is quiz night.
Meet the locals. Good wholesome pub grub in bar or seated.
Just along the coast from the busy resort of Bude, Widemouth is a long, long stretch of sand backed by high cliffs. Unusual rock formations on the beach are a magnet for climbers while the Atlantic surf brings bodyboarders, kayakers and surfers here in their hundreds. Widemouth Bay is home to a scattering of houses, pubs, cafes and restaurants but there remains a definitive sense of having strayed off the beaten path here. There is a section open to dogs all year round, loads of parking and several surf schools.
Widemouth bay is lovely, we've stayed near here a few times and it never disappoints.
Great beach for surfing and swimming due to waves and lifeguards on duty.
A pleasant forest to explore on foot or by bike, with the Ruby Trail having many starting points. Look out for the reconstruction of a Celtic roundhouse nestled among the trees.
Set on the Tarka Trail just north of Okehampton, Dartmoor, bury yourself in the local way of life by staying in a quaint little Devon town. And by little we mean the smallest tow in Devon. But don't worry, it's got three pubs.
This fun day out gives you the opportunity to learn the art of archery. Then put your newly taught skill to the test on dinosaurs, wolves and armoured knights! Much more than just target shooting.
Fantastic Family Fun!
Dragon Archery is the place to be if you want to try archery for the first time or if you are more experienced. Great challenges suitable for all ages from 8+. Really friendly encouraging team giving one to one coaching to help you get the most out of your experience. Suitable for all weathers...we went on a very wet and windy day in October! Only advice is BOOK EARLY as this attraction is very very popular!! If you are lucky enough to go along, you will see why.
A 3 hour archery session which involves shooting dinosaurs, amongst other things not just targets. I thoroughly enjoyed this and I wasn't expecting to. All equipment was supplied, and we were taught very well how to use it. Rather than just having targets to aim at, there are a number of themed areas including dinosaurs and orcs. The time passed very quickly and owners were very friendly and helpful.
This cycle and walking route runs for 11 miles between Lydford and Okehampton along a disused railway line. The route forms part of the National Cycle network with Okehampton the most popular start point where bicycles can be hired locally. The off road track has the advantage of being mostly traffic free. Meldon Viaduct offers spectacular views across the moors.
Ahh the sound of traffic!
I love walking, but I couldn't wait to get off this one. We made it from Okehampton to the Meldon Viaduct before abandoning The Granite Way and heading to the moors - it was the only way to escape the A30's roaring traffic! The subsequent walk through the valley to Meldon reservoir and over the moors to Shortacombe was great though!
Kid friendly cycle
Start from the station where you can hire bikes ( we bought our own) there is a youth hostel there in case you need to pick up basic supplies like chocolate and water! I did this with my 5 year old boy- it was not great weather but we cycled to meld on viaduct and back in less than an hour ( total of about 4 miles) and it was enjoyed by both of us - some lovely views and a nice safe easy ride- the only bit on the road is from the very quiet station to the start of the path ( we did this on a rainy day in August)
Great for the average cyclist
The cycleway starts at the old Okehampton Station (you can park right there) and is very easy to follow. There are a few gentle hills - nothing that strenuous - so it really is suitable for all ages and abilities. The scenery is beautiful - I'd recommend stopping off at the Bearslake Inn for a swift refreshment! - and it's very easy for an averagely fit cyclist to ride from Okehampton down to Lydford Gorge and back in around 4 hours with time for stop offs.
From Okehampton station join the Granite Way Walk (cycle route 27) which follows the Dartmoor railway line. It is predominantly tarmac so no dirty puddles to avoid and ideal for bike riders of all ages, with only gentle inclines. A comfortable 3 mile walk will take you to Meldon Viaduct which gives stunning views over the moor and Meldon Reservoir Dam. Another mile or so gets you to the reservoir. At the Viaduct there is a converted railway carriage which provides a small cafe - seems only to be open at weekends which is a real shame as mid week in half term there were plenty of walkers and cyclists who I'm sure would have stopped for a welcome cuppa !
A beautifully restored walled Victorian garden. Wander among the bourgainvillea and tropical hibiscus in the ornate Victorian greenhouses. The garden had been left to ruin until its rediscovery in 1999, since when Aileen, Michael and Tanya have worked hard and enthusiastically to restore it to its former glory - and beyond. It now extends well past its original walls, with colouful borders, bamboo groves and giant-leafed gunnera. The garden's restoration was documented on ITV's Gardener's Tales.
Alot of hard work has gone into the restoration of these gardens, but it has all paid off. The greenhouses mean that even on a rainy day, there is plenty to see here. There is so much to take in that one visit is not enough!
Well worth a visit. These gardens are unique, very different from anything else in Devon or Cornwall. A beautiful and inspiring experience.
Set deep in the north Devon countryside, The Rosemoor estate was once the home of Lady Anne Palmer. Lady Anne developed a passion for plants when she met noted plantsman Colllingwood Ingram while recuperating from measles in Spain. Over the next 30 years, she travelled the world to collect specimens for her garden, which she gave to the Royal Horticultural Society in 1988. The estate now comprises 65 acres of land, which includes rose gardens, a winter garden, a fruit and vegetable garden, a formal garden, woodlands, and many stream and lakeside plantings, making Rosemoor an enchanting place to visit whatever the season.
Beautiful, well-managed gardens, well worth a visit whatever the season.
The garden is absolutely gorgeous and very well looked after. The staff are very friendly and welcoming and the restaurant had great locally sourced food. A great day out for adults and children.
The rose collection - one of the largest in the West Country - is very impressive. In full bloom in the summer, the scent of over 2,000 flowers is quite sensational. The Rose Weekend, held in June, was very informative, with advice on growing your own, as well as walks and activities for children.
A woodland trail through the South West's deepest gorge, alongside the River Lyd, past the spectacular 30m Whitelady waterfall to the 'Devil's Cauldron' whirlpools. Visit in May to see carpets of bluebells. Steep paths in places, can be slippery when wet - walking boots a must. Access to the Devil's Cauldron may occasionally be closed for safety reasons. The tea rooms located nearby offer some welcome refreshments!
This is a beautiful wooded walk, although not for the faint hearted as it is steep and slippery in places. A great place to walk on a hot day as the trees provide a bit of shade from the heat. A really pretty place to visit if you're staying in the area.
A stunning walk through a hidden Dartmoor jewel.
National Trust delight
A steepish walk into the gorge but a lovely place once you're there. It could be quite mystical for children. Very verdant and if you are lucky you will see dippers and grey wagtail. At one end of the walk there is a delightful NT shop and tearoom. The waterfall and devils cauldron are captivating.
Lydford Gorge offers a beautiful walk through the valley - with short and steep or long and easy routes. Look out for the dormice boxes, part of the National Trust's nature conservation project.
Lovely picnic spot; the National Trust always provide good value and a shop!
- G Steele
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