Bovey Tracey is located on the south-east edge of the Dartmoor National Park which is the largest area of open country in southern Britain and is called “The Gateway to Dartmoor”. The town lies in the valley of the River Bovey from where it gets part of its name, Tracey is from the de Tracey family who were the Norman lords of the manor.
See My Travel Page for more information.
I need to start this review by mentioning that it is now closed for restoration work until 2013/2014. I didnt know this until just now so apologies. However, if you like to plan well ahead then you should add this to your itinerary.
Torre Abbey is located in Torquay in devon. It is right on the coast and is near to Torquay itself. I walked from Paignton (a mile or two) to Torre Abbey but there is a train station about 3 minutes walk from the Abbey.
It was free to look around the gardens but if you wanted to go into the house itself then there was a fee. I think it was between £8-£12 but you could easily spend a few hours there if History is your thing. I took a ridiculous amount of photographs of the flowers and the garden. There were some restrictions as to what you could photograph in the House. Also in the house was a lot of Artwork, including modern pieces. At the time when I went there was an exhibition of the artist Robert Lenkiewicz. I had never heard of him before but his work was extremely good although the mummified homeless man was slightly scary. Here is a link to a site dedicated to his work: http://www.lenkiewiczfoundation.org/. There were a lo of sculptures in the house too which were created by Frederick Thrupp and the collection is thought to be the "largest surviving collection from a Victorian sculptures studio".
**Sorry its closed! I would have deleted it but I had already started..**
Plymouth is the largest of Devon’s cities and regional capital of Devon and Cornwall. It is also famous as a great sea port and from its association with Sir Francis Drake. A great deal of the nation’s seafaring history has evolved from or revolved around Plymouth.
Devon as a county embraces an amazing diversity of stunning scenery, from the bleakness of Dartmoor to the wide sandy beaches of the English Riviera, the lush rural interior contrasting with the wave-lashed cliffs of its coastlines.
Diverse too are the pubs, ranging from cavernous chain-owned city centre trendy bars with their chrome and plastic, to tiny village locals whose bar maybe no bigger than an average house's sitting-room and a log fire roaring in its grate. There are whitewashed stone-walled thatched pubs with centuries of history (and usually a ghost or two) or there are the modern monstrosities of breeze block and concrete whose ghosts are those of last Saturday's hazily-remembered shenanigins!
But what the pubs do is they ALL serve beer!!! Not only that, but whether chain-owned or individually run you can generally expect a warm welcome in any Devon pub if you are a pub sort of person - HA! Well I seem to be always welcome anyway - I can never work out why tho' ;-p
The collage here is just a small selection of personal favourites and so let me introduce them:
Starting in the top left corner and spiralling clockwise into the centre we have the cosy little Tally Ho at Hatherleigh (a former coaching inn on Market Steet), then The Minerva in Plymouth (claims to be the oldest pub in the city), followed by The Dolphin, also in Plymouth (best pint of Bass in the country), next the baronial splendour of The Tarka Inn just outside Barnstaple (great views over the Taw estuary), The Odd Wheel at Wembury (Wembury's main redeeming feature!), The Highwayman's Haunt at Chudleigh (where Widecombe goes to dine), The Rising Sun at Lynmouth (where I go to dine every chance I get), The Ring o' Bells at North Bovey (a classy character) and finally in the centre The Double Locks just outside Exeter (well worth the walk along the canal!).
Just a few and I've even left my favourite The Ruggle at Widecombe out as that gets enough mentions elsewhere!
This is a facinating place, so allow plenty of time. Near the Harliquins shopping centre in Queen Street, the museum has many objects from all over the world.
Admission is free & opening hours are from 10am to 5pm except Sundays & bnak holidays. Some of the gallaries on show are:
Clocks, watches and timekeeping
There's lots of hands on for children, including quizzes & trails. Please visit the website for more information.
Paignton zoo is very interesting place to visit. We were staying in Teignmouth when we decided to come & visit. We caught a bus from The Triangle to Torquay Harbour, here you change bus’s. There’s usually one which drops off at the zoo direct, it’s an open top bus which stop’s at Paignton bus station before carrying onto the zoo. If you don’t want to eat at the restaurant ( as it can be pricy) there’s a Safeways Supermarket next door. When we arrived it was the summer holidays & the queue was horrendous, it stretched halfway back from the entrance to the street. The first place we visited was the Reptile House, it’s very hot & steamy inside large; signs tell you not to touch the plants as their dangerous & full of toxins. Here is where the snakes live in big tanks; most of them were asleep behind the glass. A bird fly’s about & dives bombs people, there’s also a large desert area before the end with spiders in.
Dotted around are ice-cream kiosk’s which sell ice-cream by Childhay Manor, I don’t know a lot about Childhay Manor except I think monk’s live there with bee’s that make honey. Circling the park is a miniature railway, has one of those diesel trains that you used to get in the late 1960’s when they were first introduced to the UK; it’s alright for children. There’s a café at Paignton Zoo, can sit about 350 people in total, there’s outside seating & seagulls come into land hoping to get food. Peacock’s strut about hoping to get food as well, one of them like’s chips! The tables are a bit wobbly, so tea lands up everywhere except the cups. The elephant’s are good to see, & the zebra.
Adults are £6.20-£5
Child are £3.50-4.30
Torbay on the south Devon coast, it is really a collective of 3 towns Torquay, Paignton & Brixham also 2 villages, Cockington & Galmpton.
Torbay is also known as the English Riviera, the collective name of Torbay relates to Tor Bay the name of the bay these towns & villages sit on.
Very much a tourist area, thousands of young foreign students flock here in the summer to the many language schools. Also very popular with British families & older people.
Attractions in the bay are: the Golden Hind ship, Babbacombe Model Village, Kents Cavern, Paignton Zoo, Cockington Country Park, Berry Head Country park, South Devon Stream Railway, Go Karts, Greenway (home of Agathe Christie).
Quite a selection of beaches in Torbay. Brixham beaches like Fishcombe & breakwater are pebbly there is also a sea water swimming pool called shoalstone.
Paignton beaches are mostly sandy, the most popular being Goodrington & Broadsands there is also a large beach with a pier at Paignton town.
Torquay has a mixure of both types, the main Torquay beach is man made, so great for sandcastle building!!
Cockington is a beautiful "Olde Worlde" thatched cottage village, There is a wonderful country park here, with 3 lakes surrounded by mature plants, 12th century church, court house, cricket ground, glass makers, pretty walled rose garden.
The village square is surrounded by thatched buildings, the forge, old school house, granary etc. You can get a horse & cart from Torquay sea front down the lanes to the village.
Try to get here early morning before the other tourist arrive, go back in time & have this picturesque place to yourself.
Dartmouth is located in far south of Devon and not far from Torbay.
I suspect that many people think of the Dartmouth in the US or Canada, however the original Dartmouth is here!!
Dartmouth is at the end of the trail of the River Dart from Dartmoor. It has a rich 1000 year old history, evident from the buildings around the town. The Royal Britannia Naval College stands proud on the hills above Dartmouth and dates back to 1902, however the interest in the sea has dated back far longer with Dartmouth Castle being an inportant defensive post for the folk of Dartmouth in days past.
Please see my Dartmouth page for more tips on this area of South Devon.
Cockington Village is an olde world horse and cart village in Torquay, set about 1-2 km from Livermead Beach and a 2-3 km from the top of town.
There is a beautiful old church circa 1000-1200 next to Cockington Court.
In the summer there are beautiful walks around a series of man made lakes (these are not grand, however they are set within a wooded landscaped area with a lot of changing flora).
If you like thatched old buildings - this is an old English paradise!
The Drum Inn local pub isn't bad too - good food and drink throughout the day.
More information about Cockington can be found on my Torquay page.
This is the main beach on Torquay Sea Front.
The firm sand is ideal for making sand castles yet still soft enough to make it pleasant to walk on.
The tides in Torquay will cover the entire beach twice over a 24 hour period.
In this picture there is no sand to see :-(
Facilities: Ample parking; Dogs banned; swimming, safe with care; warning flags in operation; life saving equipment; first aid post; toilets nearby; cafe/refreshments; deck chair/sun bed hire; public telephone
Clovelly is a very well preserved touristic village right on the coast. There is one steep road going down to the sea. Left and right of this road are cottages/houses with shops and art & crafts things as well as examples about how life was at the turn of the last century.
Luckily there is jeep service up so you dont have to walk all the way back which would have been a very serious tester for your legs.
Up the hill is visitors centrum.
As you might know the countryside is dotted with estates and manors. Arlington Court, formerly owned by the family Chichester ,is one off them which is open to public and has wonderfull Vicotrian gardens. Its now owned by the National Trust.
The inside has some nice style chambers which show you how things were in the old days in this case the Victorian period.
There is a path to the lake where the urn of the lady Rosalie Chichester stands. When coming here in the right season you can pick the raspberries right from the bushes. They were yummie i can assure you
Berry Pomery Castle are castle ruins near Totnes. It lies a bit remote in a forest, near the small village Berry Pomeroy. The castle was built in the late 15th century as a fortified house, with strong defences including a gatehouse and towers. In the 16the century however the castle was turned into a magnificent mansion, with large windows which you won't see in a "normal" castle. It must have been a really impressive building!
There are two other castles in that region that you may want to visit also - Totnes Castle and Dartmouth Castle, both owned by English Heritage as well.
Open daily from April to October, from 10 am to 5 pm (4 pm in Oct, 6 pm in July/August).
Admission: 4,20 £ adults, 2,10 £ children. Free as English Heritage member or with Oversea Visitors Pass.
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