Within a 20-mile radius, you will be spoilt for choice of days out, walks and opportunities to explore beaches, coastal scenery, gardens, villages, galleries, craft shops and tea rooms.
Walks & Beaches
We have maps, books and route ideas – if you would like some advice, do just ask. With some notice, we can also provide a lift if you would like to do a coast path walk and don’t want to retrace your steps.
Just a 10-minute drive away, the tiny fishing hamlet of Bucks Mills with its old fisherman’s cottages and stream running alongside the lane leading down to the rocky beach, is a delight. At low tide, some sand is revealed, enough for dogs to happily race around. Free car park in the woodland as you enter the village.
A true Devon combe, owned by the National Trust, the steep lane leads you down through woods and streams to the sea and you can return up the opposite side of the steep valley. A rocky beach with red cliffs and such peace. It’s also a lovely walk along the coast to Bucks Mills.
A country park and an SSSI within the North Devon Biosphere Reserve, there is varied terrain with grassy coastal plain with salt marsh, sand dunes and generally unimproved grasslands. Rich in wildlife and with fantastic views, it’s a special place to visit.
At low tide there is the most amazing beach that goes on for miles, dog friendly all year round.
Birdwatching, rambling, dog-friendly, café, all just a few miles away.
For an easy run on a long sandy beach at low tide with pubs, cafes and restaurants to hand, Instow is a good option. Plenty of parking, dogs allowed on the beach all year.
Just over the border into Cornwall, 17 miles away is the spectacular National Trust beach at Sandymouth. At low tide, you can walk all the way to Bude along the beach, with stunning views along the coast as far as Tintagel, and the café above the beach serves excellent food all year round. Also very popular with surfers.
This hidden gem is part of a Site of Special Scientific Interest and is surrounded by steep, rocky cliffs and coastal slopes. When the tide is low it reveals a small beach of golden sand with many rock pools to be found along the foreshore. Along with some interesting geology there is a picturesque waterfall. Dog friendly but best at low tide.
Hartland Heritage Coast
The coastline around Hartland is heart-thumpingly wild and beautiful. The coast path is steep and challenging in places, but the rewards are well worth the climbs. The sea is wild in windy weather, and you can easily see why so many ships were wrecked on this stretch of coast. The Wreckers pub and museum are worth a visit. Waterfalls, hidden coves, fantastic geological features and exposed cliff-tops are all to be found here, with long walks both along the coastline and inland. The village of Hartland is quaint, with little shops and studios and a good tea-room on the Square.
Not far away at all, perhaps somewhere to stop on your way home. So much to see and do.
RHS Rosemoor, Great Torrington
30 minutes away, nestled in a Devon valley and encircled by woodland, Rosemoor offers 65 acres of magical planting and varied events. Highly recommended. Unfortunately, dogs are not allowed in the gardens, but the car park is very close by, so regular returns to chat to your dog are possible!
Docton Mill Gardens, Hartland
Docton Mill Wild Flower Gardens are situated in a stunning valley, 1000m from the coast, just a few miles from Kerswell Farm. Wild flowers, roses, magnolias, streams and herbaceous borders with an award-winning tea-room, dogs allowed.
Clovelly Court Garden
Old walled gardens, restored and most productive Victorian glasshouses, vegetables, fruit and beautiful flowers. A real treat, dogs allowed and an honesty box for payment!
Hartland Abbey, with its beautiful gardens and grounds welcomes visitors from the end of March until October. 18thC Walled and Woodland gardens, the walks and the parkland provide visitors with extensive grounds through which to wander and enjoy the lovely valley leading down to the rugged Atlantic cove and cottage at Blackpool Mill. Closed Friday and Saturday, dogs welcome. Many events take place at the Abbey during the year – check the website for details.
Marwood Hill Gardens
This magical and very special 20-acre private garden with three lakes is set in a valley tucked away in North Devon only 4 miles from Barnstaple. The gardens are a wonderful haven in which to relax and enjoy the impressive collections of plants, shrubs and trees and experience the views and peaceful atmosphere. A tea room with lovely views, and dogs welcome.
Clovelly is a joy to explore, and there are many special festivals taking place through the year – take a look at the website for more information. Wear good footwear for exploring Clovelly though, the cobbled streets are very steep and can be slippery in wet weather.
Along the quaint, narrow streets of Appledore there are many fishermen’s cottages, some of which date back to the Elizabethan era. Historic shipbuilding heritage is clear to see, and galleries, cafés, pubs, craft shops and a great deli make it an interesting place to visit. Don’t miss the Hockings ice-cream van on the quay – if you like sublime vanilla ice-cream, it’s amazing!
Burton Art Gallery and Museum, Bideford
A delightful free gallery and museum with excellent exhibitions, workshops and a French café.
Less than 30 minutes’ drive away is the UK’s only remaining glass factory, there’s plenty to see, do and buy!
The Tarka Trail is a pedestrian and cycle way in the North Devon Biosphere Reserve. It runs in a 163-mile figure-of-eight through landscapes little changed from those described by Henry Williamson in his classic 1927 novel Tarka the Otter. Lots of great routes to walk or cycle.
The Gnome Reserve and Wild Flower Garden
Fun for all ages – really! Just six miles away is the enchanting woodland garden created in 1979 and evolving ever since. There are thousands of gnomes of all shapes and sizes, and a wild flower garden for strolling around. Dogs on leads welcome.
Day trips to Lundy are easy from Kerswell Farm. We can advise or help by booking for you – just ask.