“The coast, the city and the moors are all within easy reach, or you can just stay on the park and chill out”
ken and marilyn gales
Nestled between the South East side of Dartmoor, and the Devon coastline, the South Devon area is well known for its landscape, its peaceful valleys and extensive farmland, its lanes and footpaths, and a variety of old market towns to explore.
It is an area that benefits from one of the mildest climates in the UK, and its spaciousness provides an over-riding feeling of peace and calm.
If you like walking, you will love walking in South Devon! In addition to the stunning splendour of the coastal path and the stark beauty of Dartmoor, walking in the South Devon countryside is a truly unforgettable experience.
Many of the local towns and villages have heritage trails that highlight the local traditions and history. There are also walking festivals and the tourist centres provide information on guided or self-guided routes to explore, including routes that are suitable for wheelchairs.
Devon is obviously famous for its cream teas, but when it comes to food and drink there is so much more in Devon. Whether its a seafood bar at the coast, an old country pub or a fine dining restaurant, there is plenty to choose from. Our shortlist of pubs and restaurants gives you a starting list to choose from.
Dartmoor National Park is an exceptionally beautiful place to visit throughout the year, the beauty of its landscape changing with the seasons.
Dartmoor covers 368 square miles, and Webland is based just outside the South Eastern edge of the National Park, a couple of miles from the South Brent ‘gateway’ into the park.
There is something for everyone in Dartmoor. The ‘scale’ of the scenery is extraordinary. Dartmoor offers great walks for both the casual and experienced walker. Views of woodland valleys, rushing rivers, and striking reservoirs abound. Dartmoor also attracts cyclists, wildlife lovers, historians and archaeologists and, basically, anyone who is interested in the size and scale of a landscape that is both beautiful and filled with history.
Dartmoor has a wealth of historical remains; ‘clapper’ bridges, hut circles and hill forts can be seen across the landscape. The park also has nature and wildlife reserves and, of course, cattle, sheep and the famous Dartmoor ponies roam free across the land.
South Devon Market Towns
There is a splendid array of market towns to explore in South Devon, and Webland is well placed for you to visit each of them: –
Ashburton is a lively inland town, with specialist shops for walkers, plenty of antique shops, galleries and a variety of places to eat. In July there are ceremonial events from the stannary days, including an ale tasting and bread weighing ceremony. There is also a museum covering the history of mining and wool processing in the town.
Bovey Tracey is one of the main gateway towns to Dartmoor on the eastern side. It is a pretty cob and Dartmoor-granite built town.
Situated on the River Bovey it is home to an internationally famous gallery in a 19th century water mill.
Buckfastleigh and Buckfast Abbey:
A small market town on the old route between Exeter and Plymouth, Buckfastleigh was a centre for the wool trade. At Buckfast, about a mile to the north, is Buckfast Abbey. Founded in the 11th century by King Canute, the Abbey is an active Benedictine Monastery and is open to the public.
You can take the South Devon Railway heritage train from Buckfastleigh along the Dart Valley to Totnes or the Buckfast Heritage Bus to the Abbey and the town.
Ivybridge is another southeastern gateway into Dartmoor. There is plenty of Georgian and Victorian architecture to admire and a Heritage Trail around the town.
It is a good starting point for Dartmoor walks, for both the experienced and casual walker.
Regarded as the capital of the South Hams, Kingsbridge has a long history, and was famous for its shipbuilding and rope making. There are regular markets and a monthly farmer’s market. More details at Hello Kingsbridge.
Modbury is a delightful Devonshire market town that was a famous wool centre and the site of civil war battles. It has some very attractive Georgian and Victorian buildings, and a good range of restaurants, pubs and shops to enjoy.
Newton Abbot’s development came in the 19th century and it is now one of the largest shopping centres in South Devon. Attractions include Ugbrooke House set in a Capability Brown garden and Stover Country Park, with the recently added Ted Hughes Poetry trail.
Nearby are Canonteign Falls, England’s highest waterfall, the Centre for Contemporary Arts and the Natural World on the top of Haldon Hill.
Newton Abbot also has a popular National Hunt racecourse that holds regular race meetings throughout the year.
South Devon Beaches
South Devon has over 70 miles of attractive coastline between Plymouth and Torquay, including some delightful coastal towns such as Salcombe, Dartmouth and Teignmouth, some beautiful sandy beaches, many coastal inlets and great places for safe bathing or water sports.
Owning a lodge at Webland leaves you well placed to either head South to visit the coastal areas near Plymouth and Salcombe, or drive eastwards towards Dartmouth, Brixham and Torquay.
The South Devon coastline benefits from the mild South Devon climate, and has received a number of awards for the quality of its water and beaches. In addition to the beaches, the coastal paths along the south Devon coast are superb for walkers with miles of clearly marked pathways and some stunning views.
South Devon Coastal Towns
There is a great choice of places to visit on the coastline within easy reach from Webland, including: –
The River Dart, having worked its way across Dartmoor and the South Devon countryside, arrives at the coast at Dartmouth.
The town, built into the hillside, has a maze of narrow medieval lanes and a beautiful waterfront with its deep and boat filled harbour. There are a number of craft and antique shops to visit, and a wide choice of pubs and restaurants.
Plymouth has an unrivalled maritime heritage and the historic areas of Plymouth Hoe and the Barbican are an excellent place to visit. From Plymouth Hoe you have an stunning panoramic view of Drake’s Island, the harbour, lighthouse and various seafaring memorials.
The historic Barbican area, with its narrow Elizabethan lanes, is one of the oldest parts of Plymouth, with a number of shops, galleries, pubs and restaurants to explore.
Plymouth also has a very modern pedestrianised City Centre, with oral displays, water features and the largest range of shops in the region. It also has the Theatre Royal for drama and musicals, and Plymouth Pavilions for pop and classical concerts.
Built on the Kingsbridge Estuary, Salcombe is an appealing seaside town, full of narrow lanes, and with a long maritime history.
There are many attractive places to eat and drink on the waterfront, and the town caters well for water sports enthusiasts. Beaches are available close to the town and also by taking the ferry over the estuary to East Portlemouth.
Bigbury is the closest point on the coast to Webland. A quiet small seaside town, with a long stretch of beach, beautiful views, the most scenic of golf courses and the famous Burgh Island, which is only an island when the tide is in.
Many of our owners at Webland love Bigbury because, in a sense, it is an extension of the relaxing peaceful environment we have at Webland.
Teignmouth is an attractive and popular South Devon seaside town, and caters well for its visitors. It has a Victorian pier, spacious areas with lawns and flowerbeds, a model railway, miniature lighthouse, bowling greens, tennis courts, a theatre and a cinema.
Ferry rides across to the charming village of Shaldon are also very popular.
Teignmouth is also a working coastal town and the harbour is busy with fishing boats and yachts.
Torquay is the largest town in Torbay, which is made up of Torquay, Paignton and Brixham and known collectively as “the English Riviera” because of the mild climate, the panoramic sea views and the hillside villas and terraces looking out to sea.
Torquay’s waterfront has palm-lined promenades, seafront gardens, a lively harbour and an international marina. The Living Coasts attraction adds an extra feature for tourists and the illuminated bridge provides a spectacular view for an evening walk or a visit to a waterfront pub or restaurant.
Torquay has an extensive range of sporting facilities, a wide choice of shopping, and lots of options for entertainment.
Dawlish has been a popular seaside resort since the 18th century. It has three beach areas – Boat Cove, Coryton Cove and the famous Dawlish Warren – and some splendid cliffside views.
The town has an activity filled carnival week in August. It is also a great place for an evening walk, with the town lights reflecting in the sea.
There are plenty of things to do in Brixham, which is located at the southern point of South Devon’s beautiful bay. There are historical sites to visit, including the replica of Sir Francis Drake’s ship and the statue of William of Orange; there is the famous Brixham Fish Market which carries on a bustling trade, and the busy harbour is the centre-point of town activities.