Explore the attractions of the South West.
South Devon offers a wealth of varied coastline offering many forms of sea based activities. On land there are many historic houses and subtropical gardens to visit and take in the views of the area.
Some well known people: Rudyard Kipling, Agatha Christie, Oscar Wilde, Lord Tennyson, Rupert Brooke, John Keats, Peter Cook, Miranda Hart, Ben Howard, John ‘Jack’ Russell.
Indoor and Outdoor
If you want to find the hidden gems of the South West of England and make the most of your time in the area, then let your friendly local driver escort you and share his experience and knowledge.
Exploring South Devon's beautiful River Dart in guided traditional long canoes can be as relaxed as you wish. With moonlight or daytime trips along this amazing river steeped in history, with a vast array of fresh and marine wildlife to spot.
Sea Kayak Devon
The South Devon coast is a sea kayaker’s paradise, with secluded hidden beaches, beautiful sheltered estuaries with steep wooded sides and spectacular cliffs and sea caves that can only be properly explored by kayak. This part of the world is steeped in history and you will paddle past ancient castles and smugglers coves that have changed little in thousands of years.
To really enjoy the coastal riches what better way to explore the coast than by water. With craft from dinghies to kayaks, windsurfers to SUPS, you can take in the views and sunshine daily.
Wild Running & Swimming
For those wishing to really take advantage of the natural resources there are a number of centres which specialize in the more serious pursuits of open countryside running and river and sea swimming.
Unique Devon Tours
Enjoy the history and natural beauty of the area with a personal guide, whose knowledge from a lifetime living in the area opens up little secrets and myths bring the whole journey to life.
Cheston Farm Equestrian Centre
For an enjoyable riding holiday choose between daily hacks and five day riding courses, for beginners and more advanced riders.
Nature and Animals
Dartmoor Zoological Park is a 33-acre zoological garden located near the village of Sparkwell, on the south-west edge of Dartmoor, in the county of Devon in the South West of England. It is the subject of the book and film We Bought a Zoo.
Run by the Rittershausen family for 3 generations, this is an award winning centre has achieved 20 Gold Medals at the Chelsea Flower Show over 52 years of exhibiting. Wander round the rainforest pool and enjoy the beautiful, exotic blooms. There is a wide range of orchids being grown so visitors will have a fantastic display to enjoy all year round.
Ted Hughes Poetry Trail
With a wide variety of wildlife to look for the walk was created to celebrate the poetry of Ted Hughes and there are 16 poetry posts showing a poem by Ted Hughes on a theme relating to the natural world.
Woodhuish & Mansands
A spur off the South West Coast Path following ancient green lanes used by smugglers and fisherman, incorporating a brackish lagoon created by the sea being allowed to flood reclaimed pastureland then leading over coastal cliffs.
South West Coast Path
Stretching from Plymouth round to Sidmouth the path can be sectioned into day walk areas giving insights to the historic religious and spiritual sites, defence and offence structures and trade and industry of the South West over the centuries.
Coastal Zoo and Aquarium where you can mingle with penguins, see otters, octopus and seal plus there are underwater viewing areas and a cafe.
An ideal day out for the family with over 2000 creatures to see and get involved with at feeding time or informative talks.
Places of Interest
24 acres of woodland gardens, with flowering shrubs, trees and a wealth of wild flowers, including a brook cascading from its source on Dartmoor through ponds and over waterfalls towards the River Erme.
Built in 1925 for Rupert and Lady Doyly Carte this is a good example of an Arts and Crafts style house with Art Deco interior. It is also surrounded by fantastic gardens to stroll through through and enjoy.
Now owned by the National Trust this house, set in just under 3 hectares of sub-tropical gardens, was the home of eccentric inventor Otto Overbeck. See his amazing inventions and a wide collection of maritime and natural history, and enjoy the views over the coastline.
Set in 880 acre country estate this is a destination which is many things to many people. A place of learning, venue for arts and culture, but mainly developing a more sustainable, just and enriching world. Beautiful buildings surrounded by magnificent landscaped gardens.
Home for nearly 600 years to the Gilbert family who still inhabit the house today although it is now owned by the National Trust. Nestled in a valley it is a superb example of a fortified manor and has a variety of gardens to stroll through, soaking up the atmosphere of this wonderful part of Devon.
Since its foundation in 1196 the Abbey has witnessed, survived and even played a part in many important moments in the history of this region and nationally. After a major renovation it now provides a glimpse into this history as well as being surrounded by magnificent gardens stocked with native and exotic plants.
Bradley Manor House
The earliest part of this house dates from the 13th century and is a remarkably complete example of a medieval manor, set in beautiful woodland. Main attractions are collections of Arts and Crafts furniture and Pre-Raphaelite paintings.
The private holiday home of Agatha Christie, the house is set in glorious woodland gardens and contains wonderful collections of silver, books and china. It has benefited from an extensive restoration by the National Trust.
This is a well preserved example of a medieval house built around the 14th to 15th centuries and gives a clear insight into how life would have been lived back then, including the beginning of the requirement of some privacy by including separate upstairs rooms.
The house was designed in 1770 by Sir Robert Taylor and stands above the meandering River Dart surrounded by vineyards and fields. Producing award winning wines and hand made cheeses, the house is also home to the Sharpham Trust, and educational charity promoting well being and sustainable living.
At over 500,000 years old these are the oldest human dwellings in the UK and offer tours, trails, underground experience.