Dartmoor National Park, Devon

Dartmoor National Park covers 368 square miles in Devon, much of it untamed countryside and rugged moorland. To say it’s beautiful is an understatement, there is something incredibly enriching about being out on the moors where wild ponies graze and always within view is a craggy Tor. The thing is, Dartmoor is so diverse; there are steep wooded valleys and gorges, sleepy villages and friendly market towns, and there are several excellent attractions for a family day out.

So, if the wilderness is calling, get your boots on and set out for a good hike; go to Wistmans’ Wood where the ancient moss covered trees grow short and gnarly among the rocks, climb up to the church at the top of Brent Tor, see the Bronze Age hut circles at Grimspound, and the Ten Commandments Stone at Buckland Beacon. This is a landscape dotted with ancient stone circles and Neolithic burial cairns and abandoned medieval farmsteads.

If you have younger folk on board, take them to Dartmoor Zoological Park, Becky Falls, House of Marbles, Buckfast Butterflies & Dartmoor Otter Sanctuary or Pennywell Farm. You’ll find plenty to do whatever is it that floats your boat! At Canonteign Falls you can see the highest waterfall in England, there’s a motor museum at Moretonhampstead, and at Yelverton there’s Pixieland. You’ll find tea shops and country pubs on your travels, like The Rugglestone Inn at Widecombe-in-the-Moor, The Warren House on the wild and windy moor near Postbridge, or the perfectly charming Cleave at Lustleigh. For good organic and local food go to Riverford Field Kitchen at Buckfastleigh; if a picnic appeals, pack your sandwiches and sit by the river at Postbridge.

Do it. Go and discover Dartmoor, take your time and pootle about taking it all in. The only thing to be mindful of is that certain parts of the park can get busy in the summer with coaches and holiday traffic.

All information correct at the time of writing

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