The front of The Old National School (the Owners live next door to the left in Sampford Manor).
The track up to The Old National School.
The impressive kitchen/diner with the minstrels' gallery above.
The spacious sitting room with a warming wood-burner.
There are doors out to the enclosed patio from the kitchen/diner.
Doors to the patio from the kitchen/diner.
The well-equipped kitchen.
Looking down on the sheltered sunny patio.
A lovely spot for a drink.
Take care on the unfenced stone steps up to the moorland garden.
Looking down from the minstrels' gallery to the kitchen/diner and showing bedroom 3 on this floor.
What a cosy bedroom (bedroom 3).
A large comfy double bed.
There is bags of room in this lovely cottage.
There are doors out to the patio from Bedroom 1.
Bedroom 1 has 'zip and link' beds making a 6' double or two 3' singles.
The shower-rooms also provides a utility-area.
A calm peaceful bedroom.
The bunk bedroom (bedroom 2).
Cute toys for the children in bedroom 2.
The bathroom on the ground floor.
The moorland garden.
There is a utility-area in the ground floor shower-room.
An impressive front door.
You can park inside the five bar gate to the right of the cottage as if you leave your cars outside they can be used as rubbing posts by ponies and sheep!
The front door.
Looking down on the cottage from the garden.
This is truly on the moor.
An ancient stone cross in front of the cottage.
Nearby Sampford Spiney Church is worth a look.
Looking down at the house from the moorland garden.
A frosty Dartmoor morning.

The Old National School


3.5 miles E of Tavistock / Sleeps 6 (no children under 8)

7 Nights from £620 - £1170

Nearest pub

The Halfway House Inn (2 ½ miles)

This 17th century Inn takes its name from being halfway between the Barbican in Plymouth and Launceston, Cornwall's ancient capital. It's on the Route 27 cycle path, making it a good en route stop-off point to rest aching legs.

Rated 1 out of 5 stars
Rated 1 out of 5 stars

February 2012

Unattractive and serves poor food!

Nearest beach

Cremyll Beach (13 miles)

Inaccessible by road but located just 200m across the Tamar from Plymouth. This beach has a mix of stone, sand and shingle - there is only a small sliver of beach at high tide, so you would be wise to check the tides before you visit.

Nearest walk

Dousland to Princetown Railway Track (2 ¼ miles)

This disused railway line has been transformed into a spectacular walkway and rough cycle track that winds through deciduous woodland and past high moorland Tors. There are marvellous views of Burrator Lake and the Walkham Valley and the track passes the quarries of Sweltor and Foggintor, once famous for the granite used on many London buildings, including London Bridge.

Rated 5 out of 5 stars
Rated 5 out of 5 stars

February 2009

Views from the sea to Bodmin Moor, the only sound the cry of the buzzards; (good pubs in Princetown!)
- G Steele

Nearest town

Tavistock (3 ½ miles)

Big by Dartmoor standards, Tavistock is a town that seems to have everything - fancy restaurants, a historic market, a cinema, lots of shops and some good attractions, too. Plenty to do here on a rainy day.

Rated 4 out of 5 stars
Rated 4 out of 5 stars

August 2011

Tavistock - A bit of everything!

What a lovely place! Big enough to have shops like Boots and other high street chains but small enough to retain a independent feel with little boutique gift shops. It made a refreshing change after 5 solid days of holiday gift shops selling mugs and teatowels, to find somewhere that sold normal things!! We still don't know what a pannier market is, even having visited!!! Nice though!

Rated 4 out of 5 stars

January 2009


Bustling market town with many independent shops. The Pannier Market is open from Tuesday to Saturday with different stalls each day. Tuesdays are good for bric a brac and antiques. Every other Saturday there is an award winning Farmer's Market in the square. Also an award winning cheeserie. A great place for foodies.

Rated 4 out of 5 stars

July 2008

Tavistock is a lovely town with loads of interesting little shops. It's a great way to while away a couple of hours, with a leisurely lunch of course, before heading up on to the moor itself.

Also nearby

Merrivale Stones (2 miles)

Dartmoor is littered with mysterious standing stones, hut circles and old burial chambers believed to have been constructed up to 5,000 years ago. The stones at Merrivale are probably Dartmoor's most easily accessible, and include the longest double stone row in Europe, a stone circle, menhirs (standing stones) and a kistvaen (burial tomb).

Rated 5 out of 5 stars
Rated 5 out of 5 stars

April 2012


You definitely know you're on the open moor here! When you think about the history surrounding you, it really gives you a sense of being a speck in a much bigger picture. A fantastic place to watch the sunset on mid-summer's eve - the summer solstice. Something very strange happens when the sun sets over Staple Tor - accident or design?

Rated 5 out of 5 stars

February 2009

Bare and windswept spooky stones and great views.
- G Steele

Drake's Trail (2 ¼ miles)

Named after one of Devon's most famous sons, Sir Francis Drake, the Drake's Trail project, launched in March 2009, includes a range of walking and cycling routes in West Devon for all age groups and fitness levels. The new off-road cycling route follows the old railway track between Tavistock and Plymouth, crossing open moorland at Roborough Down before reaching the wooded valleys of the River Meavy and eventually the River Plym.

Rated 5 out of 5 stars
Rated 5 out of 5 stars

February 2009

See deer in the woods and watch the rivers for kingfishers, herons and spawning salmon.
- G Steele

Elephants Nest Inn (4 ¾ miles)

The menu here changes every month and is always based on local, seasonal produce.

Rated 5 out of 5 stars
Rated 5 out of 5 stars

Mr Longson October 2016

Great Quiz Night

Went on the first evening thinking we had booked, found a table for us anyway. Food exceptional and welcome very friendly. Decided to go later in the week for the quiz and curry night. Usually held first Thursday of every month. Booking essential. Very well organised and great fun, and we won!!. Would definitely reccommend this to anyone though be sure of directions as the sign is on the hedge as you pass it and you could end up back on the main road!!

Rated 5 out of 5 stars

Mrs Miller September 2013

Fantastic food & views

My guests constantly rave about this pub - so I am really happy to recommend it. Fantastic home made burgers.

Rated 5 out of 5 stars

Simon Tregoning January 2009

Looks good

Our walk overran (see Tavy Cleave walk) so we did not get a chance to try it out, but it looked good from the outside and the Web site looks good. I definitely intend to go back and will report again then.

Country Cheeses (3 ¼ miles)

The home of 'real' cheese. They also have a branch in Topsham.

Rated 5 out of 5 stars
Rated 5 out of 5 stars

Mrs Miller September 2013

Mary Portas raved about this shop

.... and you can see why. They staff are friendly & knowledgeable and they sell an massive range of amazing local cheeses. I always add their cheese to our Welcome Baskets at Lower Chaddlehanger. Top Shop!

Cotehele (7 ¼ miles)

A medieval house in amazing condition, with fabulous collections of armour, textiles and furniture from the period.

Rated 5 out of 5 stars
Rated 5 out of 5 stars

May 2013


This is one of the most beautiful houses in UK. Well worth a visit.

Rated 5 out of 5 stars

June 2012

Stoic British carried on in AWFUL weather!

Wonderful House, Gardens, grounds and shops..AWFUL half term weather, but we braved it all! NB the house has NO electric lights so visibility in the house is limited on dull days!. Mill lovely and the walk down from the house through the gardens and past the chapel to the quay side and then the mill was lovely....a little slippery in places as it a little steep in parts and was SO wet..but we all remained upright! Lovely Cornish ice creams at the Quay and great bread flour can be bought at the mill shop. Hurrah for the VERY helpful and lovely mini bus driver who can ferry any less able bodies around the 3 sites...

Rated 5 out of 5 stars

April 2009

Cotehele is a beautiful National Trust property - I recommend walking the wider estate, including the folly behind the property which gives you a bird's eye view for miles! The walk down through the quay to the mill is stunning, and the waterwheel and mill race is currently being renovated, which is an interesting project. You can even buy flour that has been milled on site.

Rated 5 out of 5 stars

January 2009


A medieval gem with a magical garden sloping down to the Tamar. Plenty of walks on the Estate. Highly recommended are the scones at the restaurant on Cotehele Quay - just the thing at the end of a stroll along the river.

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