This beautiful North Devon village by the sea, tucked away near the border with Cornwall, is an idyllic place to take a holiday. Surrounded by peaceful countryside, and right next to the magnificent North Devon coastline, Welcombe is a fantastic spot to enjoy stunning walks and breathtaking Atlantic sunsets.
Nearby Hartland Abbey & Gardens gives visitors access to its wonderful parkland grounds and picturesque valley leading down to the remote Atlantic cove. You can also easily join the South West Coast Path for blustery cliff top walks and to explore hidden coves, and large sandy beaches, such as Westward Ho!.
Lundy Island is just off the coast here, and is accessible by ferry from either Bideford or Ilfracombe. The crossing takes two hours each way, but for wildlife lovers, the effort is worth it as this remote island's habitat has been compared to that of Galapagos islands, and it is also a walker's paradise.
Other nearby activities include the 80 mile traffic-free Tarka Trail Coastal Path and Cycle Way that follows the journeys in the novel of Tarka the Otter, Tamar Lakes Country Park near Bude, and the Milky Way Adventure Park near Bideford.
A holiday cottage in Welcombe offers a great base for a tranquil break exploring the majestic beauty of the North Devon and Cornwall coastline.
With its beautiful gardens and grounds, Hartland Abbey welcomes visitors from March to October. The home of the Stucley family, it’s filled with treasures and memorabilia collected over many generations. Wander through the beautiful 18th century walled and woodland gardens, potter through the parkland and enjoy the valley leading down to the rugged Atlantic cove and cottage at Blackpool Mill.
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Offering an action-packed programme of activities under the safe supervision of the highly experienced Sam Roberts, and his team. Whether you'd like to learn surfing or body boarding at Widemouth Bay, or experience Canadian Canoeing or the entertaining Jungle Run in the Bude canal - there is something for everyone, of all ages and abilities. Qualified coaches. All equipment provided. No experience necessary. Open 1 March through to 30 December. Booking required.
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An array of rides, slides, adventures and shows, Milky Way Adventure Park is a fun day out for the whole family with something for all age groups. There’s a café and a restaurant on site, they cater to parties, and prices vary throughout the year according to the season.
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A timeless village on the coast, Clovelly has a history dating back to the Domesday Book when it was owned by the King. There are lots of charming local activities to get involved with – silk workshops, meeting birds of prey, angling and boat trips on the water, spa treatments and even a little retail therapy, all with a view of the sea. In short, there’s something for everyone.
Clovelly Village, Clovelly Visitor Centre, Clovelly EX39 5TA (T: 01237 431781)
A huge indoor swimming pool in Bude, stretching 33m long and 5 lanes wide, offering plenty of space for fitness training and leisure swimming alike. The pool offers two distinct sessions - flat water sessions for the serious swimmers wishing to do lane swimming and sessions with waves and the flume open for families after some splashy entertainments. Check timetable to ensure you are coming along for the right session for you. Opening hours: Mon to Fri 07:00 - 21:00, Sat 07:45 - 17:00, Sun 09:00 - 17:00, Bank Holidays 10:00 - 14:00.
A 13th century traditional Cornish pub with open fires in winter and a beer garden with beautiful sea views and children’s play area for summertime. Open all day, all year round, serving tasty light lunches, cream teas and hearty evening meals along with a great selection of local ales and other beverages for all occasions.
The Bush Inn Crosstown, Morwenstow, Bude EX23 9SR (T: 01288 331242)
A picture perfect English tearoom surrounded by the beautiful wild flower gardens at Docton Mill, a great spot for a cream tea or slice of homemade cake after a few hours discovering the wonderful array of plants here. Also serves a good range of freshly prepared soups, pasties, salads and sandwiches.
Docton Mill Gardens & Tearooms Lymebridge, Hartland, Bideford EX39 6EA (T: 01237 441369)
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Lovely, lovely! Amazing garden. Amazing cakes and cream teas. Great walks. Would visit again.
Situated in a wild and beautiful bay with wonderful sea views, this family run pub and hotel was once the old customs buildings for the quay. Today the Wreckers Bar is a great place to enjoy a good pub lunch including excellent local fish, accompanied by a pint of local ale or cider. A good spot for refreshments after a day walking the South West Coast Path, or spent enjoying the pretty beach below.
Hartland Quay Hotel Hartland, Bideford EX39 6DU (T: 01237 441218)
A pretty tea garden by the sea run by local legend Margaret, who is as famous for her delicious home-made cream teas and pasties as she is for her sense of humour. Pretend to walk off the calories afterwards by strolling down to the beach or along the cliffs to Northcott Mouth. All seating outside, dogs welcome.
Margarets Rustic Tea Garden S W Coast Path, Bude EX23 9ED (T: 07747 537564)
Hartland Quay is primarily a pebbles and rocks beach but low tide exposes sand and interesting rock pools to explore. It is splendidly isolated with no facilities but that's part of the charm. Car parking is available at Hartland Quay Hotel & Pub, EX39 6DU
Crooklets Beach, near Bude, offers golden sands and rock pools to explore. There is a cafe right on the sea front and access from teh car park is level. There are public toilets and an outdoor shower for sandy toes. Car parkign is available at Crooklets Road car park EX23 8LG.
Less the five minutes on foot from the centre of Bude, Summerleaze Beach is an easy beach to get to and enjoy for the whole day. There’s a river flanking the sandy beach and it’s sheltered by a breakwater, making it popular with families and surfers. You can book beach huts daily or weekly, and adding to its charm is a part man-made/part natural salt water sea pool to swim in at the foot of the cliff, that’s been welcoming swimmers since it opened in 1930. There’s lifeguard cover in the summer months, dogs need to be kept on leads from May to September, and there are toilets and disabled toilets close by as well as an RNLI shop, sandy play area, a beach café, and a large car park that leads directly to the sand dunes.
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Busy car park but the sandy beach is worth it. Cliff top walks and a tidal pool made this a perfect spot on a sunny day.
Bucks Mills beach is situated in a rocky secluded cove at the bottom end of the ancient fishing village of Bucks Mills. No public toilets, no shops or other facilities, just a lovely place. Car parking is available at Bucks Mills car park EX39 5DY.
Three miles south of Bude, Widemouth Bay Beach is a long, open bay that’s popular with families and surfers, while at low tide there are hundreds of rock pools to explore. It’s a wonderful place to learn to surf or body board thanks to fantastic conditions and lots of local surf schools in the surrounding area. There’s free parking at both ends of the bay as well as viewing points. Dogs are welcome throughout the year on the south section of the beach, otherwise known as Black Rock, but on the northern part there are seasonal dog bans. It has a wild feel to it, which adds to its appeal, and there is lifeguard cover in the summer, but nonetheless do be careful when swimming.
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Lovely clean beach.
Lovely clean beach. Dogs enjoyed it!