Devon is primarily an agricultural county with rolling hills, river valleys, and fertile land. It’s unusual because English counties typically have two coastlines: one to the north and one to the south. It also has two National Parks: Dartmoor and Exmoor. The climate is mild, and the landscape is beautiful, so tourism is a big industry in Devon; there are so many wonderful places to visit. That is not to say that the county is overrun with tourist attractions, but rather that people have flocked to see Devon’s beauty. Those first settlers, 40,000 years ago, were not mistaken. You can find an Exeter Taxi to take you to your destination.
Here are my top places to visit in Devon, some well-known and some not so much.
Exeter: Cathedral City
Exeter, Devon’s administrative centre, outperforms its size in extreme ways to see and do. Gandy Street is one of the locations that inspired J.K Rowling to create a certain young Potter. Not far away, you can explore the ruins of ancient Rougemont castle, where I used to hide as a child among its sprawling trees.
On The Exe, Exeter Cathedral is a lovely place to visit in Exeter, as is the timbered Mol’s Coffee House in Cathedral Yard. The nightlife revolves around the Quayside, where there are numerous opportunities to have a good time on the river. The city’s oddities include Parliament Street, one of the world’s narrowest streets, and The House That Moved, a fourteenth-century timber building that was painstakingly moved inch by inch to make way for a road.
Lorna Doone Country: Exmoor
Exmoor National Park spans both Devon and Somerset, but I believe you’ll forgive me for directing you here. There is evidence of prehistoric occupation, as well as possibly more recent Beast of Exmoor occupation.
Exmoor is home to the highest sea cliff in mainland England, Great Hangman near Combe Martin, and the town itself is worth a visit in Exeter. One of my favourite things to do here (or potentially a great walk) is to take the toll road from Porlock to Lynton (a mere £2.50). It’s a stunning route, with wildlife, coastal views, and lanes dappled with sunlight through trees. On a clear day, you can see as far as Swansea and the Gower Peninsular across the Bristol Channel. There are numerous rest stops and a picnic area. Remember to keep an eye out for goats in the Valley of the Rocks. Once in Lynton, a coastal funicular railway connects you to the bay below in Lynmouth.
Tales of Smugglers and Wreckers at Hartland Quay
This spectacularly wild stretch of coastline is one of Devon’s hidden gems and one of my absolute favourite places to visit in Exeter. The Hartland Peninsular is rugged, with narrow lanes scented with wildflowers. You follow the long, winding lane across the peninsula until you reach Hartland Lighthouse. It’s possible to explore here, but I recommend continuing to Hartland Quay. Scramble in the rockpools, watch hang gliders find thermals from the cliffs above and take in the beauty of the coast
This is the Atlantic Coast of storms, seafaring tales, and smugglers’ routes. When you see the sign for Hartland Quay, take a steep switchback down to the complex, which includes a small hotel, an equally small museum, and a dramatic bay.
Appledore is an artistic estuary village.
Appledore is one of those idyllic small villages. It’s lined with streets of pastel-painted higgledy-piggledy cottages, interspersed with independent shops and restaurants. The village has a thriving arts scene, with many galleries and an autumn book festival. The quay itself is spacious, with fresh fish being landed at the far end each morning. It’s the kind of place that makes you want to immerse yourself in the culture and move into a cottage overlooking the estuary to Instow.
Westward Ho!: Beach Resort
The only town in England with an exclamation point in its name was named after the novel by Charles Kingsley. It makes my list because it is a very British seaside resort with a large sandy bay. It has many of the amenities you’d expect from a seaside resort, such as amusement arcades where you can spend a long £5 of 2 pence pieces on a rainy afternoon, cafes, ice cream parlours, tea rooms, and vendors of buckets and spades.
Find Out How to Travel in Exeter
It is a breathtaking experience to visit these locations. However, you would also require transportation to get to these locations. In Exeter, you can book a Navigo, one of the top UK-based ride-hailing services. Travel and have fun by visiting these locations as they get you to your destination on time.