Devon guide

Tourists Guide to Devon

Holidaying in Devon offers something for everyone, with two National Parks, Exmoor and Dartmoor, two UNESCO World Heritage Sites found on the stunning Devon coastline as well the historic county town of Exeter with its ancient Cathedral and hidden lanes. Renting a holiday cottage is the most relaxing way of visiting the county, you can come and go when you like and dogs are usually welcomed, so all the family can enjoy their Devon holiday.

What Makes Devon so Special?

  • Two coastlines: North and South
  • Award-winning clean beaches
  • National Parks:  Dartmoor and part of Exmoor
  • Lush green countryside
  • Excellent restaurants and traditional village inns
  • A Devonshire Cream Tea
  • Great family friendly tourist attractions
  • Five Areas Of Outstanding Natural Beauty

What can we do In Devon?

  • Sand, Sea and Surf
  • Walk the South West Coastal Path
  • A walkers and cyclists paradise
  • Outdoor leisure pursuits
  • Surfing and Water sports
  • Family days out

Where can we stay in Devon?

All about Devon

With its two coasts, wild moors, picturesque fishing villages, picture postcard harbour towns and  bustling seaside resorts, it’s not hard to understand why Devon is such a popular tourist destination.

With both a north and a south coast, it enjoys two quite unique and distinctive coastlines. A stunning North Devon coastline, famous for its rugged cliff tops, award-winning golden sands and clean surf and the South coast, home to The English Riviera provides family friendly beaches, estuaries, harbours and traditional seaside resorts. Sand, Sea and Surf. Unsurprisingly, Devon boasts an abundance of superb beaches with excellent clean waves. Visitors are very spoilt for choice, whether they are looking for miles of beautiful golden sands backed by dunes like Woolacombe or Saunton or pretty sandy coves and shingle beaches, ideal for rockpooling like Wembury beach. There is something to keep everyone happy, whether you are looking for  family fun on the sand, a quiet and relaxing sunbathe or for the more active surfing or water sports, you won’t have to travel far to find it.With five official Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and its national parks (Dartmoor and Exmoor), Devon delights visitors with rolling hills, wild and rugged moors plus miles and miles of lush green unspoilt countryside.

A walkers and cyclists paradise! The South West Coastal Path, Britain’s longest footpath at 630 miles also passes through some of the most dramatic landscapes and spectacular scenery in the county. The Tarka Trail in the North Devon Biosphere also offers 163 miles of car free paths.

An amazing choice of outdoor leisure activities are available to help you explore and the enjoy the very best of this region. Choose from leisure pursuits such as  fishing, riding, sailing, surfing, kayaking, coasteering and paddle boarding  in some truly stunning locations.

For fun days out, there are a whole host of attractions ranging from large adventure parks, farm attractions, historic National Trust houses, RHS gardens to traditional seaside fun.  Plymouth and Exeter, its two historic cities provide excellent shopping, bustling nightlife and many of their own  attractions; including the National Marine Aquarium and Exeter Cathedral.

Famous for its Devonshire cream tea (and a definite must on any visit to Devon), Devon has also been increasingly gaining a reputation as a foodie heaven, where fabulous restaurants, cosy pubs and village inns are proudly serving only the best home-cooked food with the finest local produce.

Devon is a fantastic county offering the best of both coastline and countryside, and really does give you the chance to choose the holiday you want, whether you are looking for a quiet countryside break or a family holiday by the sea.

Devon History

Devon gets its name from the Celtic tribe who inhabited the South-West of England from the Bronze Age onwards and were known and named by the invading Romans as “Dumnoii” meaning “a person who lives in a deep valley”. As its one of only three counties in the UK to possess both a north and south coast, understandably the sea has played a major part of its history.   The ports of Exeter, Plymouth, Barnstaple and Dartmouth all  thrived from medieval times on the export of tin and cloth, until these declined in the 19th century. Today, although fishing and agriculture still have an important role in some parts of the region, it is the rise of tourism that has greatly benefited this part of the South-West.

How do you get to Devon?

Getting to Devon couldn’t be simpler. There are excellent transport links.  By road, if you are travelling from the North, you simply follow the M5 all the way down to the West Country. From the south coast or the M3, use the A30/ A303.

The nearest airport is at Exeter and the main rail stations include Exeter St. Davids, Newton Abbot, Totnes, Plymouth and Tiverton.