It is only recently that I've started booking a berth on the "Night Riviera" - in days of old, when they had the "Smoking Carriage" - I always used that and had some great overnight journeys.
There is something sensual about sleeping in a moving train, a lullaby of motion, and when the land of nod hits, it hits deep!
Travelling from London, the station I should get off at is Newton Abbot, but what I do is stay on until Plymouth and then get the train back to Newton - the train gets into Newton about 4 am and would mean me having someone to pick me up at that unearthly time!
So I simply, and this is no problem whatsoever, arrange to be in the coach ( I think it is N)that detaches at Plymouth - they shunt it onto Platform 8(?) and I can sleep through until 7-ish in morning, then get my cup of tea in bed and catch the next train back.
And the weird thing is - I sleep so soundly that I don't even hear the coach being uncoupled and shunted. Yes this is the way to get down to the South West, sleep all night and wake up fully refreshed and relaxed. - For £31 GBP it is steal (or £21 each for double occupancy.)
UPDATE!!! As part of their "service improvements" coach N no longers gets uncoupled at Plymouth - Hmmmm, I will have to have words!
And a wonderful little add on is the complimentary toilet bag with its little tiny tube of toothpaste and toothbrush - must photo!
Also, I should mention the fact that on every journey the staff have been great! (Memo to self: put a feedback comment to them on this.)
To book use phone number as for some reason you can't book online - why, I don't know.
As I don't drive (never even had a lesson!) I quite often use taxis to get home from Newton - I can usually find someone to give me a lift to get there.
And my favourite taxi man is Tinky (he's actually another John): even if I miss the surcharge time (11 pm) he just charges me the standard rate, in fact we don't even bother with the meter these days - he is a real nice guy with a proper laid back Devon attitude, good conversations always.
If I give him a ring and he is not available, he'll sort out a mate of his to pick me up, same deal.
One recent evening, I think it was coming back from Ilchester, I arrived a Newton station and he was on the taxi rank - "Hi, john, you want a lift home?"
"Gonna have a quick pint or two at Railway."
"No probs, I'll pull off rank, give me a shout when you're ready."
Yeah, OK, it is a decent run for him, better than short town jobs, but he really does seem to enjoy getting out on the moor, and as I said we "shoot the bull", always enjoy the ride.
If you ever find yourself in Newton give him a shout:
Mention "John the Chef" and you can pick up my bill to date! HeHeh - I'll buy the beer when U arrive.
Must grab a photo next time!
If you ever want to come to Widecombe there are local airports at Bristol and Exeter, but there are very few deals to be done, unless you happen to be lucky. Every time I want to go from either of these airports the fares are exorbitant and so I usually end up flying from London.
It is not so much a case of cost in pure "Pounds, Shillings and Pennies" , but rather convienience - do I really want to get out of bed at 3 am for my taxi man man to get up at same time, deliver me to Exeter airport for a 7 am flight? NOPE!
What I do is get the overnight sleeper train from Newton to Paddington and when the train arrives (roughly 5 am) they allow you sleep through until about 7 and then bring you a morning cuppa!
And going the other way is even better!
I think I am running out of space here so will continue on next tip.......................