OUT & ABOUT
Set in the Teign Valley on the Eastside of Dartmoor, Weeke Barton is just 20 minutes from Exeter yet feels like miles from anywhere. Such an amazing spot for so many activities. Or none at all! There's walks from the door, bike trails, fishing, canoeing, rock climbing, horse riding, golf. They are listed below in detail and by no means exhaustive. Dartmoor is 95,400 hectares of open-access land full of fun and adventure just waiting to be had. Each season tells its own story. We got Bluebell operas in April, wild ponies everywhere in August, Salmon leaping in October and white water rivers in December. You are also within easy reach some of Devon's best beaches and the ever-growing portfolio of totally brilliant restaurants and pubs.
Beach 9 miles. Shop 1.5 mile, pub within 1.5mile.
Walk: So much choice. We offer a handmade book of 5 walks from the door but feel free to use our O.S maps and go off piste on your own route. There is so much vaired terrain here, rivers, moorland, fields, hills, reservoirs, beach and Tors. Walk for an hour or all day.
Ride: Depending on your bike, riding here is very diverse. Haldon Hill (20mins) is a great woodland park for off roading and you can hire bikes there. They also have a freestyle park, it’s good for all ages and levels call 01392 833768/www.forestcyclehire.co.uk We are just off the B3212 and B3193, 2 very challenging road bike routes. Dartmoor classic comes past us too.
Fish: Fly-fishing at the reservoirs – drop your day permit cash in the box and off you go. Also Fingle Bridge Inn offers day permits to fish in the river Teign – a totally gorgeous spot. You will need your own equipment to fish both these spots and a degree of experience. Trout fishing on Dartmoor is easy – we like Tavistock Lake www.tavistocktroutfishery.co.uk as they have a good kids pond to fish in, only fly fishing in the adult lakes all equipment can be hired here, Tavistock has a great pannier market.
Golf: There are many courses in the National Park from the glorious Bovey Castle www.boveycastle.com, you can hire all your equipment from their Pro shop, it is expensive but a great course. The Teign Valley is our local course and only 5 minutes from the house www.teignvalleygolf.co.uk
Crazywell pool - (40 mins) This one is a pool with a legend behind it. Located in the middle of Dartmoor, it is rumored to be a bottomless haunted pool. In ‘real life’ it’s an old shallow cast mine but I think a ‘haunted pool of doom’ sounds so much more exciting! It’s located just south of Princetown. Its 3 mile walk into the wilds of Dartmoor so go prepared.
Switchwick Common - (30 mins) near Ashburton, mountain clean peaty water, easy accsses, also known as Deeper marsh, it has been a bathing place for generations. A great day out with Ashbuton nearby with great ammenities and antique shops. Our family fav. Features some very high cliff jumping too. Only for the brave.
Salmon Leaps - (20mins) a long river pool in the woods below Castle Drogo. The Teign cascades into three Victorian square stone plunge pools, each about 1m deep and smooth. Great for a pummelling massage.
Shilley Pool - (30mins) near South Zeal, a small, dammed plunge pool in a brook on the edge of the moor. Picnics, paddling and sheltered, balmy in the summer. Harder to find and about 40 min walk up hill to get there,for this reason it is always quieter.
Holne Pool - (40 mins) This pool has it’s own mini waterfall so definitely worth a visit. It’s a secluded spot located in Holne Woods, close to the village Holne on the southeastern side of Dartmoor.
The Manor - (5mins) Lower Ashton. A friendly local, with a great atmosphere. Mick, Jan and Chris run a super pub, with a good menu and serve a great pint of Otter Amber. Dinner, service starts at 6.30pm and finishes at 9.00, it gets very busy too so do book a table. www.manorinn.co.uk/01647 252 304
The Lamb Inn - (10mins) Longdown. This pub has changed hands recently and is going from strength to strength. We have eaten here twice in recent weeks with friends and family and the food has been excellent. With simple and well chosen (seasonal) menu and a well stocked bar with a good selection of local ales. www.lamblongdown.co.uk/01392 811 100
The White Horse - (15mins) Moretonhampstead. An excellent pub in the heart of the village, with a courtyard out back. Great Mediterrainen style food and the best pizzas we have ever tasted. A great spot for dinner, service starts at 6.30pm and finishes at 9.00pm, it gets very busy so please book a table. www.thehorsedartmoor.co.uk/01647 440 242
The Teign House - (5 mins/or 1 hour walk see walk 3 in the house walks book) locals pub with a big outside area, with OK food and a good selection of local ales. Teign River with safe paddling and DIY rope swing over the river. A must in the summer months. www.teignhouseinn.co.uk/01647 252 286
The Chagford Inn - (25mins) Situated in the pretty village of Chagford, the Chagford Inn prides itself on the quality of its ales, beers and wines. The menu is really well thought out, excellent quality every time. www.thechagfordinn.com/01647 433109
Shaldon - (25mins) a crescent shaped beach, cliff backed with good rock pooling and epic crabbing. To get to the beach you have to go through an old smugglers tunnel. There is also a small Zoo www.shaldonwildlifetrust.org.uk. The particularly good Cafe Ode is based in the car park too www.odetruefood.com/01626 873 427
Teignmouth - (25mins) on the other side of the Estuary to Shaldon, a wide beach at low tide, with good parking. A great kids play park and a very good kid friendly skate park. Head round to the Crab shack for sunset over the water.
Brixham - (40 mins) a small beach with good clean and clear swimming. With a working fishing harbour and lots of other amenities all based round the big harbour, great crabing off the harbour wall. All you need for a good family day out. Try Rockfish for lunch with daily fresh fish from the harbourside fish market under the restaurant. www.therockfish.co.uk/01803 850872
Bigbury on Sea - (45mins) a stunning stretch of beach with a corridor of sand leading to Burgh Island with its Art Deco hotel and 13th Century pub. If the tide is in a sea tractor takes you over. One of our go to beaches.
Dawlish Warren - (25mins) Quite busy on arrival with the usual seaside treats but walk along the beach to the left and you'll be alone in the sand dunes and wildlife reserve. 5 mins from the beach is Cockwood, with a great pub The Anchor Inn www.anchorinncockwood.com/01626 891203
Swanaford Vinyard Tour - (5min walk) When the neighbours moved in and said they were starting a vinyard we were very chuffed. 4 years later we are selling the first vintage in our bar and they are now open for tours and tastings. It is one of England's most picturesque vineyards, but we would say that! The wines pretty good too. www.swanford.com
Devon Guild of Craftsmen - (25mins) Set in a renovated water mill, it's a delightful spot and has really great exhibitions. Check their website for current events. The cafe on top is very good, aswell as the recently opened Cafe 3 sixty down the road. www.crafts.org.uk/01626 832223
Dartmoor Artisan Trail - Blacksmiths and beekeepers, potters and painters, woodturners and weavers - Dartmoor National Park has one of the most diverse and talented artisan communities in the UK.
The Dartmoor Artisan Trail is a self-guided art, craft and food trail that links the moor's finest artists and craftspeople. Definitely check this site out as it offers a really cool look behind the workshop walls and a chance to try your hand at traditional skills. www.dartmoor-artisan-trail.co.uk
Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery - (20mins) If it's raining or your in Exeter this is a really super little musuem. As well as the exotic animals, birds and insects, it follows the history of Dartmoor's creation and the county of Devon. Interesting stuff. www.rammuseum.org.uk/
Dartmoor Heritage Trails - This is a great website to discover the history, wildlife and landscape of Dartmoor. With maps and approved walking routes helping you access many of the natural and manmade elements of Dartmoors rich and diverse past.www.dartmoor.gov.uk/wildlife-and-heritage/heritage/heritage-trails
Museum of Dartmoor Life - (30mins) This a super little museum based in Okehampton, spread out over 3 floors and housed in an old mill. Great for both kids and adults it provides a look into the rich history of life on Dartmoor. www.museumofdartmoorlife.org.uk/01837 52295
River Dart Country Park - (25mins) Set in 90 acres of parkland, the park is very popular and rightly so. There is enough adventure and fun for all the family, all day here. www.riverdart.co.uk/01364652511
Cannonteign Falls - (15mins) Just down the road from us, this is a lovely park. There are natural and manmade waterfalls, beautiful lakes and fun woodland walks. www.cannonteignfalls.co.uk/01647252434
Chagford Lido - (25mins) River-fed swimming pool with a little tea and coffee hut
set in the fields near Chagford. Largest outdoor pool in Devon. A Victorian lido with a small kids pool, loads of decked areas for sunbathing. Beware the water can be cold so they have wetsuits to hire. www.chagfordpool.co.uk
Bellever Woods - (35mins) A great place for a day out. Set in the woods and surrounding moorland. The river has easy safe access and grassy banks. Nice and shallow mostly. Take a picnic or BBQ and spend the day. Good spot for seeing wild ponies too. *personal tip take something inflatable for the kids to float down the river* There is a car park and public toilet.
We have included these places because they are some of our favourite places for lunch. These eateries are a little further away than the locals, so we tend not to use them for dinner. That said they are all open for dinner just check opening hours and always book a table.
The Riverford Field Kitchen - (45 mins) Nr Totnes. Eating at the field kitchen is a great experience, we have been here many times and always have a great meal and a great time. Tables are shared with other diners for a feast of the freshest seasonal produce from the surrounding fields. The chefs prepare different menus everyday, there is no menu or choices to make just arrive take a seat, order a drink and wait to see what turns up, you will not be disappointed. www.riverford.co.uk/01803 762 074
Rugglestone Inn - (45 mins) Widecombe on the Moor. A small but perfectly formed Dartmoor pub, our favourite on the moor. Cask ales and great pub food all housed in a granite flagstone floored pub. In the summer there is a great garden with ducks running around and a small stream for the kids to play in. www.rugglestoneinn.co.uk/01364 621 327
The Oyster Shack - (45mins) Bigbury on Sea.This place is a hidden gem on a hot sunny day, the outside area is huge and almost cut into the side of a cliff. Seafood is the name of the day here, all fresh and locally caught what more can we say. www.oystershack.co.uk/01548 810 876