DEVON

The Exmoor National Park is a harsh plateau with views over the Bristol Channel. It is also the starting point for the Exe and Lyn Rivers. If you're into water there are the 90ft White Lady Waterfall and Devils Cauldron Whirlpool at Lydford Gorge near Oakhampton. There's also a castle at Lydford.

The charming oldy-worldy village of Clovelly (near Bideford) was put on the map by Charles Kingsley's novel 'Westward Ho!' (1855). For those interested in maritime things visit Appledore (to the north of Bideford) with its colour washed cottages, tudor buildings, and the North Devon Maritime Museum. At Croyde there's a gem and rock museum.

There are bronze age and roman earthworks in the Hillsborough Nature Reserve near the village of Hele, which is also the location for a restored - and working - 16th century water mill. And there's an excellent nature reserve at Braunton Burrows.

Oakhampton Castle [SX 584942] in the small market town of the same name is ruined but reasonably preserved. Oakhampton also has a Museum of Dartmoor Life; the moorland is just to the south of town. Speaking of rugged Dartmoor there's Hound Tor, a deserted medieval village. [SX 746788]

Tarr Steps bridge (near Dulverton) may be a prehistoric trackway or a medieval one. Anyway, it consists of huge stone slabs laid across the River Barle and shows what can be done in the absence of concrete. And speaking of 'roadways' the village of Combe Martin has a high street 2 miles long - possibly the longest village street in England. Once a centre for lead and silver mining the village has a museum of industry and agriculture.

In Uffculme village there's the Coldharbour Working Museum which specialises in demonstrations of making woollen yarn.

For wildlife such as seals and varieties of sea birds check out Dyer's Lookout west of Hartland. From here Lundy Island can be seen on a clear day. The Island can be visited (catch a boat from Ilfracombe). There's a steep path up from the landing stage but you can reward yourself with a pint of beer at the village pub at the top. There's a freshwater lagoon (it's a nature reserve too) separated from Start Bay by the Slapton Sands shingle ridge.

Other places you might like to look at are Arlington Court, a Regency house five miles south east of Lynton, and Fuschia Valley in which the village of Lee sits.

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