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North Devon Area Guide by postcode - Barnstaple EX31/EX32, Bideford EX39, Combe Martin, Ilfracombe, Woolacombe EX34, Braunton, Croyde EX33, Great Torrington EX38, Holsworthy EX22, Lynton & Lynmouth EX35, South Molton EX36 Minehead
Gateways to North Devon
M5 Motorway Junction 27 - Exeter St. Davids - Exeter Airport - Tiverton Railway Station - Barnstaple Railway Station
Barnstaple Station photo copyright Brett D Adams
Barnstaple, the regional "capital" of North Devon is an excellent shopping centre with many national and local stores on its bustling High Street. Adjoining the High Street are Joy Street, Gammon Walk and Boutport Street. Visitors can also shop in "Green Lanes", a modern shopping centre or step back in time at the ancient Pannier Market and Butchers Row. There is a huge selection of places to eat and drink, a multi-screen cinema, the Queens Theatre, North Devon Leisure Centre, Tarka Tennis Centre and a skate park. Points of Interest: Barnstaple Guildhall, Brannams Pottery, Queen Anne's Walk, Barnstaple Heritage Centre, Barnstaple & North Devon Museum, Barnstaple Library, Castle Mound, Rock Park. Cattle Market, Rolle Quay, Tarka Trail. Good local and national bus services. Tarka Line rail connections from Barnstaple Station to Exeter. Barnstaple Tourist Information Centre, The Square, Barnstaple, Devon, EX32 8LN Tel: 01271 375000
Instow beach photo copyright Pat Adams
Instow is a delightful village situated opposite Appledore on the Torridge Estuary midway between Bideford and Barnstaple just off the B3233. Major attraction is the miles of golden sand and golden sunsets. Plenty of places to stay in the village and because the beach is so close it is a popular destination for families with children who also benefit from the easy access to the Tarka Trail for leisurely walking and cycling. Good selection of shops, galleries, Inns and eateries including the much acclaimed Commodore Hotel. Activities: Sailing, Windsurfing, Boat trips & coastal tours, Bird Watching. Points of Interest: Royal North Devon Yacht Club, North Devon Cricket Club, Tapely Park Gardens, Instow Signal Box, Instow Church, Westleigh Village, Tarka Trail, RSPB Wildlife Reserve at Isley Marsh, Instow Quay. Within easy reach of Barnstaple, Bideford and Westward Ho!
Appledore Quay photo copyright Pat Adams
Appledore is a small traditional fishing village on the Torridge Estuary. Its narrow streets and drangs host quaint locally owned cafes, shops, art galleries and inns. This is a vibrant community with its own annual festivals, fun days, gig races and regattas. There are plenty of places to stay in the village which makes it a good base for families or outdoor enthusiasts.
Activies: Sailing, boat trips and fishing trips, crabbing, adventure days, outdoor pursuit holidays, Walking and cycling on the Tarka Trail, birdwatching and nature walks at Northam Burrows Country Park & Reserve. Westward Ho! is nearby where a 2 mile stretch of beach is great for families, surfing, kite buggy racing, surf canoeing. The Ancient North Devon Golf Club, Bideford, Torridge Swimming Pool and Leisure Centre are within easy reach: Points of Interest: Docton Gallery, Richmond Dock, North Devon Maritime Museum, Appledore Lifeboat Station, Appledore Ship Yard. Public Transport: Local bus to and from Bideford
Bideford photo copyright Pat Adams
Bideford is a pretty market town and port. The River Torridge runs through this centrepiece for the Torridge district. Excellent assortment of local shops, traditional pubs and lively bars and eateries, All streets lead upwards from the river and horizontal to the long quay. Viewed from East the Water across Bideford Long Bridge the buildings seem to be tumbling into the river. At the top of the town there is another mini shopping centre the Market Place Shops, Bideford Pannier Market and Butchers Row a bustling place to shop for local produce, antiques, curios, crafts and more. Bideford is surrounded by some of the most picturesque rural and coastal villages so is an ideal base for family country holiday or walking & surfing enthusiasts. Places of interest: Bideford Town Hall, Bideford Railway Station & Tarka Trail, Schooner Kathleen & May, St. Marys Church, Burton Art Gallery and Museum, Victoria Park, Bideford Library, Lundy Passenger Ferry HMS Oldenburg. Nearby Places to Visit: Torridge Swimming Pool and Leisure Centre, Appledore, Northam Burrows, Atlantic Village Shopping, Big Sheep, Clovelly, Milkyway Adventure Park. Sandy Beaches nearby at Instow or Westward Ho! Good local and national bus services. Bideford Tourist Information Centre: Bideford TIC, Burton Art Gallery, Kingsley Road, Bideford, EX39 2QQ Telephone: 01237 477676
Westward Ho! Beach photo copyright Pat Adams
Westward Ho! Blue Flag beach, two miles of golden sands ideal for families and watersports enthusiasts who enjoy all year round surfing, kayaking, wind surfing, kite buggy racing. Beyond the famous pebble ridge lies the Northam Burrows Country Park which is popular for nature lovers and bird watchers and the links course of the Royal North Devon Golf Club is also within the reserve. Easy access to the Southwest Coast Path for walkers and ramblers. Other facilities include the Westwad Ho! Tennis Club, horse riding stables, tennis courts and pitch'n put. The surf is also home to wild sea bass, attracting anglers from all over the country! Equipment for bathing, surfing and angling is available from local outlets. At low tide the rock pools are an exciting amusement for children. The beach is patrolled by two RNLI lifeguard units from May-September, one at the slipway and another down the beach at Sandymere. Excellent pubs, shops and local amenities. Traditional B&B, guest houses, caravan and holiday camps and luxury apartments. Local Bus services to Bideford. Tourist Information: The Burrows Centre, Sandymere Road, Northam, Bideford, EX39 1XS. Telephone: 01237 479708
Great Torrington, the Cavalier Town. A delightful, thriving market town perched high above the Torridge Valley surrounded by unspoilt countryside. The town is at the heart of "Tarka Country" and is famous for its historical association with the English Civil War, specifically the Battle of Great Torrington in 1646. This event is commemorated each year with a torch lit procession and free firework display. In addition to the local businesses and craft workshops in Torrington Pannier Market, the individual style shops span out in and around the main square where Torrington May Fair has been held since 1554. Real ales and home cooked food is served in the Black Horse Inn, reputed to be the oldest pub in North Devon. Place to Visit: Dartington Crystal, Torrington 1646, Secret Memorial Garden, Torrington Heritage Museum, RHS Garden Rosemoor, Torrington Pannier Market, Plough Theatre, Torrington Swimming Pool and Leisure Centre, Torrington Golf Club. Points of Interest: Tarka Trail Cycleway, Torrington Commons and nature trails, River Torridge.
Torrington Tourist Information Centre: Torrington TIC, Castle Hill, South Street, Torrington Telephone: 01805 626140
Holsworthy Visitor Information Centre: Holsworthy Visitor Centre, The Memorial Hall, Holsworthy, Telephone : 01409 254185
BUCKS MILLS PICTURE TOUR on the Atlantic Highway, between Bideford and Clovelly
Bucks Mills photo copyright Pat Adams
Bucks Mills is a hide-away village on the Atlantic Heritage cost just off the A39 Atlantic Highway between Bideford and Clovelly. Mainly comprising holiday cottages, once associated with three famous families, the Careys, The Pine-Coffins and The Braunds. This is an ideal base for South West Coastal Path Walkers with dramatic stretches to Peppercombe and Westward Ho! in one direction and Clovelly to Hartland Point in the other. No facilities in the village itself but excellent local produce and general stores sold at Bucks Cross Post Office Stores. There is a large car park before you get to the village is located down a long and winding road with large car park . Excellent beach at low tide. Nearest holiday park is Bideford Bay, just passed the post office stores, which has excellent facilities for families. Ideal location for surfers and walkers . Points of Interest: Church of St, Annes for Cream Teas in the Summer season and nature walks through Bucks Woods and the South West Coast Path, Lime Kiln, ancient Quay.
Clovelly, the most famous of North Devon's coastal villages and is featured in TV programmes on a regular basis. Two hotels, The New Inn at the top of the village and the Red Lion down at the quay. Excellent haven for tired coastal path walkers, well known for its donkeys, association with Charles Kingsley, for boat fishing and diving trips, and seal watching off Lundy Island. Clovelly has a full itinerary of special events and festivals including Woolsery Agricultural Show which is now held at Clovelly Court. Points of Interest: Clovelly Court Gardens, Clovelly Village, remember to pick up an iillustrated map from the Clovelly Visitors Centre which highlights some of the places to see as you walk down through the village from the Visitors' Centre to the Quay. Tourist Information: Clovelly Visitors Centre
Hartland is a small town with a hearty community spirit. Good local shops, cafes and pubs, craft galleries, potteries and other local arts and crafts. Beyond the town is the tiny hamlet of Stoke, Hartland Abbey and Hartland Quay. Ideal location for ramblers, South West Coastal Path walkers and coast and countryside lovers. Points of Interest: Hartland Quay Hotel, Hartland Point, Gardens at Hartland Abbey, Rock Formations at Hartland Quay, waterfall at Spekes Mill, St. Nectans Church, Blackpool Mill, Docton Mill, Nearby beaches include Duckpool, Mouth Mill, Sandymouth, Speke's Mill Mouth. At low tide, the sheltered beach and rock pools at Hartland Quay are popular with families. The Wrecker's Retreat at the Hartland Quay Hotel is a popular watering hole for weary walkers and serves an excellent Sunday Lunch!
Welcombe Mouth is located on the outer limits of the North Devon Area of Natural Beauty. A quiet spot popular with surfers and photographers. The secluded beach has good sand at low tide and is surrounded by high cliffs. Superb panorama from high on the Southwest Coast Path. Welcombe Mouth is accessed by car from the A39, the road winds down to the scattered village of Welcombe which is home to the Yarner Trust, Welcombe Pottery and the Old Smithy Inn. The last part of the road is not surfaced so great care must be taken. Points of Interest: Spectacular rugged rock formations, big stepping stones across the mouth of the fast running stream linking one side of the South West Coast Path to the other. The water cascades down over the rocks. Waterfall visible from the beach and from the coast path.
Braunton Biosphere photo copyright North Devon ANOB
Why not use your own ipod or MP3 to download a walking tour and Explore Braunton the history and wildlife of the area this summer? Stunning Scenery, stunning wildlife, stunning website - Braunton has it all. This exciting project linking community and tourism in the North Devon Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and Biosphere Reserve has recently been handed to the local community for management. The latest addition to the site includes these exciting new ipod and mp3 tours which give you all you need to get out and about to Explore history, wildlife and geology of the area. Alternatively if the weather is not so good browse the site from the comfort of your own home. You can also hire GPS linked node Explorers from the Countryside Centre in Braunton main car park during the school holidays and take a satellite directed tour. Click here to choose a tour. Tourist Information: Braunton TIC, The Bakehouse Centre, Caen Street, Braunton, North Devon, EX33 1AA Tel: 01271 816 400
Croyde is a quintessential Devon village full of pretty whitewashed thatched cottages. It may have an olde-worlde charm but, like Woolacombe, it is definitely a modern, vibrant holiday venue with a good mix of traditional art & craft galleries, gift shops, tearooms, cafes and ice-cream parlours, lively pubs, bars, restaurants and surf oriented shops. Croyde is a fantastic resort with safe bathing for children and is patrolled by RNLI lifeguards during the summer season. In June Croyde Beach is the venue for the Gold Coast Oceanfest a three day sport and music festival.
Woolacombe is famous for its safe family beach, surfing, surf-life saving events, the Goldcoast Ocean Festival and its annual National Sandcastle Building Competition. There is also a local horse riding stables, two surf schools and Devon's only paragliding school. Woolacombe & Mortehoe Golf Club is close by. The award winning Blue Flag beach is three miles long and stretches out between two National Trust promontories, Baggy Point and Morte Point. Safe family bathing and the beach is patrolled by RNLI lifeguards during the summer seaso. There is ample parking on the Esplanade, at Sandy Burrows or on Marine Drive which snakes along above the beach and Woolacombe Warren below the South West Coast Path and the Tarka Trail high above. Woolacombe Tourist Information Centre: The Esplanade, Woolacombe, Devon, EX34 7DL Tel: 01271 870 553
Combe Martin Beach photo copyright Pat Adams
Combe Martin Tourist Information Centre, Cross Street, Combe Martin, Devon, EX34 ODH Tel: 01271 883 319
Ilfracombe Landmark photo copyright Pat Adams
lfracombe Tourist Information Centre, The Landmark Theatre, The Seafront, Ilfracombe, Devon, EX34 9BX Tel: 01271 863 001
South Molton Tourist Information Centre, 1 East Street, South Molton, Devon, EX36 3BU Tel: 01769 574 122
Exmoor National Park Authority, Exmoor House, Dulverton, Somerset, TA22 9HL Tel: 01398 323665
Lynton Tourist Information Centre, Lynton Town Hall, Lee Road, Lynton, Devon, EX35 6HT Tel: 01598 752 225
Tiverton Tourist Information Centre Tiverton Tourist Information Centre Phoenix Lane Tiverton EX16 6LU Tel: 01884 255827
EXETER - Ideal for M5 Motorway and Exeter Airport
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