Walks in North Devon

North Devon is a must for walkers, we have many areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty to explore. We are especially blessed here at Putsborough Manor Holiday Cottages as the South West Coastal path runs past the door.  Several of the walks listed below are within a short walk from our cottages.

Whilst there are many opportunities to get off the beaten track and explore new grounds, there’s also plenty of well known and well loved routes which are perfect to walk, hike, stretch your legs.  Wander in a daydream, explore, sightsee and discover in North Devon! Many routes are also dog friendly and are perfect for families too.

Plus, due to our position on the coast, the gems of North Devon are right by the sea. So here’s our guide to some of the best coastal Walks in North Devon.  How many of these amazing routes and photo-worthy views have you enjoyed?

NDMB – CREATE YOUR OWN PATH (30) from Panoptic Motion on Vimeo.


Putsborough Holiday Cottages
Woolacombe Beach looking towards Putsborough and Baggy Point

We have to start with this one, the classic walk between the beaches of Putsborough and Woolacombe. It’s a simple idea; start from either end and follow the path overlooking the beach. Along the way you take in the sea, sand, surf and views out to Lundy and Morte Point,  – then on the way back take the same route or walk over the beach instead. Whether you’re in Woolacombe, or staying at Putsborough, this is a walk anyone can enjoy.  Putsborough and Woolacombe beach are dog friendly all year (restrictions apply in places).


This walk can be commenced from the door of your cottage, just walk across our field and across the lane, the path starts there.  Walk the Coastal Path on National Trust land around the coast to Croyde. This walk includes an easier route and a steeper path for an alternative route back. It’s a great walk for taking in amazing, panoramic views of the coastline towards Bideford and Hartland, and on a clear day you can see the coastline of Wales as well as Lundy Island and the beautiful golden beaches of Putsborough, Croyde and Saunton. Children will love discovering the secrets along the way and everyone will enjoy the rocks and cliffs – a true, North Devon experience.



putsborough beach

A walk on the pathways of Morte Point will give you the chance to enjoy a dramatic and rocky coastline with sweeping views.  You can tag this on to the walk from Putsborough to Woolacombe if you are a keen walker (approx 6 miles each way). Stop at Woolacombe for lunch or dinner.  Or you can commence from Mortehoe village carpark and look out for the sign ‘coastal path’ and have a picnic on the point or visit one of the two lovely pubs in Mortehoe.




Braunton Burrows sand dunes at Saunton near Braunton on the North Devon coast, England, United Kingdom.

If you want to get away from the crowed beaches of Croyde or Woolacombe in the summer this is the place for you! Drive to Velator from Braunton, you’ll find carparks where the Burrows meet the estuary. From there it’s up to you, as there are no set paths, instead you can simply wonder. Drop down onto the beach and follow the water to the wrecked boat and Crow Point – with views of Instow, Westward Ho!, and Appledore – and then head towards the sea onto the far end of Saunton Sands. With the Burrows behind you, there’s plenty of dunes to be explored too.



If you fancy a woodland walk alongside a river as it makes its way to the sea and then discover Heddon’s Mouth (a pebbly beach with an ancient lime kiln) then take a drive to Heddon Valley   On the edge of Exmoor the drive to Heddon Valley is worth the trip, as you drive into the valley you will discover a beautiful landscape of ancient lichen covered trees and fern forests that harken back to prehistoric times. Park near The Hunters Inn  and find the start of a beautiful walk through the woods alongside the River Heddon to where it meets the sea. These are some of England’s highest sea cliffs, framing an amazing view out to sea. Ideal.

Walking Woolacombe Coastal Path

3 miles of beach heaven in deepest Devon! Walking Woolacombe Coastal Path is a must when you stay in this area of North Devon.

Putsborough Holiday Cottages

Start at Marine Drive Car Park and walk towards Putsborough. Or Start at Putsborough Sands Car Park to and walk to Marine Drive Car Park in Woolacombe.

Easy – The path along the South West Coast Path is wide except for one stretch above Putsborough Sands where the path (gradient – 1:7 uphill for about 10 metres) narrows to a width of just over a metre. A second gradient near Broadsands Bungalow rises for 100 metres at 1:12.

An easy level walk above Morte Bay with spectacular views from Baggy Point to Morte Point and out to Lundy. The beach stretches for over 2 miles. This is an easy access walk suitable for wheelchairs, pushchairs and trampers. Those of us with, at least, a moderate level of fitness will enjoy this walk.

To check that this walk is suitable for you click here:  South West Coastal Path Information

Where you can find additional mapping and photographs showing gradients, path surfaces, and other detailed information.


Events – Croyde 2016 inc Oceanfest

Happening Events Croyde ( Goldcoast Oceanfest ) this summer!  Come and stay in one of our beautiful self contained cottages and enjoy …


Oceanfest 17 – 19 June 2016

Goldcoast Oceanfest held next to the beach in Croyde on midsummer weekend. It is all about good times, great music, keeping fit and looking after the environment. With competitions on the beach during the day and some great music from both local acts and headliners from afar.  Its a fun event for all the family. Musical acts include DJ Fresh, Reverend and the Makers, Sunset Sons and KT Tunstall plus many more.



The North Devon AONB Marathon and Half Marathon has quickly established itself as one of the most challenging and visually stunning events in the UK. As in previous years, places are expected to sell out months in advance. The coastal route is tough, which is part of the appeal, and the scenery is incomparable.  Taking you through the breathtaking North Devon Area Of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Runner’s World reviewers rated this run at an amazing 93%, with an incredible 100% saying that they would do it again.



Croyde TriathlonCroyde Ocean Tri is back, for its second year on Sunday 3rd July 2016. Based at the beautiful, award-winning Putsborough Sands, takes in some of the South West’s most stunning scenery.

This Olympic distance Triathlon is a course to be reckoned with and certainly not for the faint hearted. Join us in 2016 for what promises to be a fun and challenging event.


CROYDE’S BEER FESTIVAL @ DOWN END 12th – 14th August 2016


Beer Festival in Devon: 3 day summer festival of beers, cider and music overlooking the beautiful Croyde Beach, North Devon. With a host of beers from local breweries and a selection of the finest acts all we need is some sunshine this summer! On the edge of the beach next to one of the best surfing spots makes it a brilliant spot for a Devon Beer Festival!


Woolacombe is the largest of our rallies. Set at Golden Coast Holiday Parc in Woolacombe Bay North Devon. We pride ourselves on the fact that this rally is like no other!  Giving the best of both worlds with all the onsite accommodation and facilities plus buses that ship over 1000 of the scooterists attending into the local village of Woolacombe.  We have 3 rooms running each night with The Bowling Alley a child friendly venue that is open until midnight with DJ’s, a large bar, various kids facilities and FREE bowling all weekend. Our child policy at Woolacombe is that all under 18′s must be out of the other two venues by 9pm so this is a safe venue for kids to be able to enjoy the evening in safety. Sunday is our party night with all our normal rally DJ’

events in croyde Croyde Craft Market – Every Thursday on the Green in Croyde Village

Whilst in Croyde visit the stalls of the craft market where local vendors sell their wares.



Regular live music is to be found in Croyde at our local pubs (The Thatch or the Manor Inn) and sometimes in the village hall.  Great live music can also be heard at the Kings Arms in Georgeham and Saunton Road Studios in Braunton.  Check the websites for more information on when and where:

Things to Do in Clovelly – 2016

Whilst enjoying a holiday in one of our cottages a visit to the lovely village of Clovelly is high recommended, here are some of the events happening in 2016:

July 01, 2016 to July 31, 2016


Visit Clovelly during the month of July and enjoy diyarn bombingscovering the yarn-bombed areas of our famously picturesque fishing village.

The *tight-knit* community of Clovelly residents have been busily preparing a ‘blooming’ lovely project. Yarn-bombing the village, with the help of people from all over the UK & abroad, who are donating beautiful yarn samples! The white knitting of Celebrity Design Guru, Laurence Llewelyn Bowen, will have pride of place in a very special, secret feature of the Clovelly Yarn Bomb. 

The village will look even more colourful than usual, with knitted donkeys, seaside garlands and crocheted ‘cobble-cosies’ plus much more. This unusual project is part of Clovelly’s entry to the ‘Britain in Bloom’ competition and is in aid of the Devon Air Ambulance Trust.

Yarn Bombing is a type of street art that employs colourful displays of knitted or crocheted yarn rather than paint or chalk. Yarn installations can be easily removed if necessary.

Lifeboat Weekend in aid of the R.N.L.I.
August 06, 2016 to August 07, 2016

Held in aid of the RNLI, this popular event is a celebration of the Clovelly lifeboat and its volunteer crew.
The Lifeboat House will be open to visitors and there’ll be operational displays by the Clovelly lifeboat. It’s a fun-packed weekend with games, competitions, entertainments, food and drink, music and other family fun in and around the harbour.
September Sailings aboard historic vessel, Irene
September 04, 2016 to September 19, 2016
Experience life at sea and the exhilarating pleasure of sailing aboard the historic vessel, Irene, along the stunning coastline of Clovelly or to Lundy Island this September. Enjoy lending the crew a hand by hoisting sails, trimming jibs and steering the ship. No experience necessary – just come along for the fun!

Lobster and Crab Feast
September 04, 2016

Clovelly celebrates its famous lobsters and crabs sustainably caught by its fishermen with a great day out for all the family.
Choose from a variety of crab and lobster dishes cooked on the quay or book a table at the Red Lion Harbour Restaurant and dine on delicious lobster and seafood platters.

There’ll be live folk music, chef cookery demonstrations…

Apple Day
October 28, 2016

Bring a bag of apples, watch them being pressed, taste the juice outside the Visitor Centre, or bring more for pasteurisation and bottling. On entry to Clovelly, children can also enjoy apple games, crafts and an apple modelling competition with prizes.

Clovelly Herring Festival. 10th Anniversary
November 20, 2016
Herring Festival
Clovelly Herring Festival 2014

Clovelly was once a major centre for herring fishing! Our annual Herring Festival is held to promote these tasty, nutritious ‘Silver Darlings’ and support carefully managed fishing as carried out by our local fishermen.

The village once depended on the harvest of herring, which are caught in superb condition for a short season off its coast. Records go back over 400 years and in 1749, there were a hundred herring boats in the port. When fishing was good 9000 herring could be landed at one time. Those days of massive catches are long gone and there remain just two herring fishermen who still employ sustainable fishing methods using drift nets and long lines.

Maritime historian and writer Mike Smylie will return with his ‘Kipperland’ exhibition, which is devoted to the history of the herring. He will also be turning herring into delicious and delicate-tasting kippers and bloaters in his smokehouse.

There will also be net making, flax processing and a curragh on show provided by ‘Flaxland’.

Enjoy a wide variety of herring dishes in the quay kitchens or at the Harbour Bar. Cookery demonstrations, live shanty and sea song singers, stilted entertainers, other local food. Craft stalls, a photographic exhibition of Clovelly herring fishing, a Herring Hunt, face painting, henna tattoos and National Trust event-themed, free craft activities.


Clovelly Gig Regatta
July 30, 2016

The West Country boasts a long tradition of racing pilot gigs. Gig racing is exciting and strenuous, with crews reaching speeds of 9 knots in North Devon’s powerful tidal waters. You’re assured an exhilarating day’s racing. So come along and cheer on the brave crews

Woolsery Agricultural Show
July 25, 2016

Summer in North Devon would not be complete without a visit to this ever popular show.

A fun-filled day packed with a programme of activities. Classes include crafts, cattle and sheep, together with horse and pony competitions. There will be a Dairy Marquee with displays such as yoghurt and ice cream making and the chance for children to “milk a cow” along with competitions. You’ll find bustling trade stalls offering locally made crafts and food with fairground rides and a bouncy castle for the children. There’ll also be a family dog show, a display of hounds, the Young Farmers’ “It’s a knockout” and to finish the day, a parade of vintage farm machinery.

It’s a great summer day out for all the family

Clovelly Maritime Festival in aid of the N. Devon Hospice.
July 17, 2016

maritime festival

The day will be full of fun and packed with a programme of all sorts of activities and entertainment for all ages. The ‘Clovelly Gun Run’ starts the event from the harbour to Victoria Fountain. Then there’ll be lively music, street entertainment, crafty creations, sea sea-themed story telling, puppet shows, family activities and a workshop about exploring the great outdoors.

On the quay, there’ll be seafood kitchens and a range of food and art & craft stalls.

The North Devon Yacht Club will be participating in the first Clovelly Cup Race. There is also a chance to have a go in a gig with the Clovelly gig team.

Free entry for under 16s if they come dressed as a pirate, mermaid, salty sea dog or fish wife.Under 7s have free entry anyway, but we would love it if they come dressed up too. So do come along and enjoy this fun-packed day out in support of the North Devon Hospice.

Woolacombe Britain’s best beach 2016

Devon beach named the best in Britain by TripAdvisor for the second year!

(and if you go now you’ll probably have it all to yourself!)

Woolacombe wins TripAdvisor Traveller's Choice Award 2016

TripAdvisor’s Travellers’ Choice Awards has named the breathtaking Woolacombe Britain’s best beach.
This glorious beach is a spectacular gem right on our doorstep, and is attracting visitors all year round.Woolacombe Britain’s best beach in Devon is the number one in the UK, for a second year in a row.

The quieter, and some might say even more beautiful, Putsborough Sands is located at the far end of the beach.

Backed by sandy hills and the Woolacombe Downs, the beach boasts a three-mile long stretch of golden sand and rolling, unbroken surf which makes it the ideal hotspot for surfers. The sheer length of the beach means that there is no shortage of sand to sit down and relax on during the busy summer months.

1. Woolacombe Beach, Devon


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Putsborough Beach
Putsborough Beach

Woolacombe Beach has received the best reviews and ratings from travellers, landing it the number one spot again in the top 25 beaches category in the TripAdvisor 2016 Travellers Choice Awards. One person said: “Three miles of heaven. In wild weather, it is beautiful. In good weather, it is a delight.” The beach is part of the beautifully unspoilt north Devon coast which has protected status as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

It boasts nearby parking, surf hire, showers and toilets. There are also plenty of cafes, pubs and shops nearby.

At the Putsborough end of the beach there is surf hire, showers, parking, toilets, and beach shop and cafe. There is also the beautiful award wining Putsborough Manor Holiday Cottages for visitors who want to sample the delights of this amazing part of the world! 

The Travellers’ Choice Beaches Awards were determined by the quality and quantity of traveller reviews and ratings for beaches, gathered over 12 months.


North Devon Marine Conservation Zone

North Devon Marine Conservation Zone announced by government

imagesTwo areas of North Devon’s coastline have been officially designated as Marine Conservation Zones from this month. More areas of North Devon’s coastline will be protected as the Government announces (17.1.16) new North Devon Marine Conservation Zone.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has today (Sunday 17th January 2016) announced 23 new areas of the UK coast which will be awarded environmental protection. With North Devon Marine Conservation Zone being one.

The 8,000 sq miles nationwide include the area from Bideford to Foreland Point near Lynmouth. And from Hartland Point to Tintagel in Cornwall, as two of the zones

‘Vital we protect our marine environment’

Marine environment minister George Eustice announced the site and said: “As an island nation, the UK is surrounded by some of the richest and most diverse sea life in the world. From the bright pink sea-fan coral colonies off the south-west coast, to the great chalk reef stretches in the east.

“It’s vital that we protect our marine environment to ensure our seas remain healthy, our fishing industry remains prosperous and future generations can enjoy our beautiful beaches, coastline and waters. “By designating these new Marine Conservation Zones and creating a Blue Belt of protected areas around the country, we can better protect our environment through careful marine management in years to come.”

The country currently already has 27 designated MCZs, including around Lundy Island, and a third phase of the project is expected to be consulted on next year.

Bideford to Foreland Point

The site between Bideford and Foreland Point will protect a wide range of habitats, from beaches to intertidal sands which are exposed at the low tide.

Rock habitats and sediments will also be included,  This MCZ will fill a gap in the network for honeycomb worm reefs, which are formed from the closely-packed sand tubes of the worms’ colonies.

The site will also protect important and vulnerable species such asspiny lobster, and the pink sea-fan coral. These provide homes to other creatures and an attachment for dogfish’s ‘mermaid’s purses’ eggs.

Hartland to Tintagel

The site between Hartland Point and Tintagel in Cornwall contains rocky habitats in deeper waters, dominated by creatures such as sponges, anemones and sea-fan corals.

The honeycomb worm reefs and pink sea-fan corals are also protected within this site, as with in Bideford to Foreland Point.

Woolacombe Beach / Putsborough Sands Voted No1 UK Beach 2015!

Woolacombe Beach / Putsborough Sands Voted No1 UK Beach 2015!

Great News for North Devon as Trip Advisor Reviewers vote Woolacombe Sands the Best Beach in Britain 2015.

Woolacombe Sands is a 3 mile stretch of beautiful beach incorporating the quieter Putsborough Sands at the southern end. The Putsborough end of the beach is well served by the Beach Shop selling hot and cold food and drinks, and beach goods, large car park, surf hirer and beach goods rental, toilets and shower etc.  Putsborough is in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, sheltered by Baggy Point with its fantastic coastal paths over the National Trust owned headland – famous for its amazing views towards Lundy Island and the South Wales coast… A must visit for lovers of the outdoors!


8983-Putsborough-Beaches-Coast-Coastline-Rocks                        baggy

Top New Year’s Eve in Bideford

Top New Year’s Eve in Bideford

New Year in Bideford

Did you know that Bideford has been voted one of the top ten places to celebrate New Year?

See the article in The Guardian

Wikipedia says:

New Year traditions

Bideford is renowned for its New Year’s Eve celebrations, when thousands of people – most in fancy dress – from surrounding towns, villages and around the world gather on the quay for revelries and a fireworks display.[83][84] The event normally includes a number of local musical acts performing on the X Radio One Roadshow stage.[85]

Bideford New Year’s Eve 

Bideford has been heralded in the national press as hosting one of the top ten New Year’s Eve events in the country! (The Guardian) The town puts on a host of activities, is closed to traffic and revellers enjoy the festivities in fancy dress. The people of Bideford really look forward to this annual event and every year thousands of people dressed in inventive costumes ranging from vampires and villains to Disney characters flock to the town centre to enjoy the outdoor roadshow and dancing.

The New Years Eve celebrations will also incorporate day time events, which will have a strong family feel about them. There is a fancy dress theme which changes from year to year, a fun fair, and live music from afternoon and through the evening.  All of this is topped off with a fantastic firework display to bring in the New Year.

Clovelly Herring Festival

Clovelly Herring Festival

Herring Festival
Clovelly Herring Festival 2014

A visit to Clovelly’s Herring Festival is a great day out whilst staying in North Devon.  This years was on 16th November and in addition to getting the opportunity to see the beautiful and unspoilt village with its famous cobbled street (made famous in the Hovis advert) you can sample the foodie delights on offer…

Clovelly was once a major centre for herring fishing and our annual Herring Festival is held to promote these tasty, nutritious ‘Silver Darlings’ and support carefully managed fishing as carried out by our local fishermen.

The village once depended on the harvest of herring, which are caught in superb condition for a short season off its coast.  Records go back over 400 years and in 1749, there were a hundred herring boats in the port.  When fishing was good, 9000 herring could be landed at one time. Those days of massive catches are long gone and there remain just two herring fishermen who still employ sustainable fishing methods using drift nets and long lines.

Maritime historian and writer, Mike Smylie, will return with his ‘Kipperland’ exhibition, which is devoted to the history of the herring.  He will also be turning herring into delicious and delicate-tasting kippers and bloaters in his smokehouse.

There will also be net making, flax processing and a curragh on show provided by ‘Flaxland’.

Enjoy a wide variety of herring dishes in the quay kitchens or at the Harbour Restaurant, (visit http://www.clovelly.co.uk/red-lion-hotel-harbour-restaurant to view the menu), cookery demonstrations, live shanty and sea song singers (Flash Jack, Tavy Tars and Rakes Adrift), stilted Seagulls, other local food and craft stalls, a photographic exhibition of Clovelly herring fishing and National Trust event-themed, free craft activities.

Standard admission charges include all entertainment.

Clovelly Herring Festival featured in:Countryfile Magazine
Channel 4’s River Cottage series