Dartmoor Retreats

Top 10 on Dartmoor

With so much history, wildlife, culture, and wilderness waiting to be discovered, Dartmoor offers something for everyone! Whether you’re an outdoorsy type who loves a long hike through the wild, or a history buff with a passion for unearthing ancient settlements; we can guarantee that you’ll love every second of your time on the moors! Including famous zoos, ancient abbeys, National Trust sites and more, here are 10 of our favourite Dartmoor activities. 

A unique Village

Widecombe in the Moor

The picturesque village of Widecombe in the Moor is one of the hottest spots amongst visitors to Dartmoor, with holiday makers from around the world keen to catch a glimpse of the village’s character and charm. With quaint tea rooms, independent shops, roaming wildlife, a towering church, and a local pub offering Dartmoor beer and locally sourced food, there’s plenty of culture to absorb in Widecombe. Make sure to check the village’s busy calendar of events which includes craft markets, star walks, yoga classes, and more!

THe Heart of Dartmoor

National Park Visitor Centre

If you’re wondering where to start your Dartmoor journey, then the National Park Visitor Centre in Princetown would be a great choice! For hikers and cyclists, speak to local experts to find the most suitable route for your day; whether it be a challenging climb, or scenic stroll! With regular exhibitions, displays, maps and resources, and a children’s discovery zone… there’s so much to learn about Dartmoor. The centre is open daily from 10:00 – 16:00, so don’t be afraid to pop in and meet the locals!

National Trust

Buckfast Abbey

Nestled in a valley on the Eastern edge of Dartmoor, Buckfast Abbey has over a thousand years of history and serenity waiting to be discovered. Still home to a working community of Benedictine monks, the Abbey Church and its stunning gardens attract thousands of visitors every year. Stroll around the extensive grounds that include award-winning gardens and fields of lavender. Head into the Abbey Church to hear the famous choir, and marvel at the building’s dramatic lantern ceiling – covered with incredible paintings. The Abbey shop offers unique gifts, cards, and books, many of which are made by Monks from across Europe. 

Natural Attraction

Canonteign Falls

Canonteign Falls is a stunning natural attraction on the eastern edge of Dartmoor, here you can escape the crowds with peaceful walks surrounded by waterfalls and lakes, with gardens and playgrounds to enjoy along the way. Set across 90 acres of park and woodland, and boasting the highest waterfall in Dartmoor, the park offers walks and activities suitable for all ages and abilities. Canonteign Cafe and Gift Shop are open all day, so you won’t fall short of fresh refreshments, or local gifts to take home!

Plenty of fun

River Dart Country Park

Set across 90 acres of parkland within Dartmoor National Park, River Dart Country Park is one of Devon’s best-loved family tourist attractions! Get back to nature and lose yourself in 90 acres of stunning woodland, lakes, rivers, and parkland, all filled with exciting activities like zip-wires, high-ropes, and kayaking! Ideal for people of all ages and abilities, this spot is absolutely worth a visit if you’re happy to get wet and muddy!

We bought a zoo

Dartmoor Zoo

Set in 33 acres of beautiful woodland on the edge of Dartmoor with incredible views of the surrounding countryside, Dartmoor Zoo is a unique wildlife park with a fantastic collection of animals. These include tigers, lions, cheetah, jaguar, lynx, wolves, tapir, capybara, racoon dogs, meerkats, monkeys, a fantastic collection of bugs and reptiles, and much more! Have you seen the Hollywood film ‘We Bought a Zoo’ with Matt Damon and Scarlett Johansson? Well that film is based on Dartmoor Zoo’s story! Before your visit, make sure to check the daily timetable of public talks, feeding times, animal encounters, and demonstrations, there really is so much to see and do! 

Enjoy the water

Burrator Reservoir

Surround yourself with nature and wildlife, explore woodlands, rugged tors, and open moorland, all at the Burrator Reservoir near Yelverton on Dartmoor! With so many walking and mountain biking trails, there’s a suitable route for all ages and abilities. If you’re not there for exercise, then visitors can fish off the banks for rainbow and brown trout. Known as the jewel of Dartmoor, this dramatic landscape is one of the most beautiful spots on the Moor, making it perfect for picnics or quiet moments as the evening sun drops behind the hills.

Beauty Spot


Sitting in the heart of Dartmoor, Dartmeet is one of the most popular beauty spots in the area, with so much history, folk law, and archaeology to discover. Whether you’re hiking, cycling or driving across the Moors, stopping off at Dartmeet for a picnic or cream tea is a must, and the perfect opportunity for a photo! Scramble the rocks whilst avoiding the cold waters of the River Dart, discover ancient bridges, mysterious stone circles, and much more!

Family Fun

Pennywell Farm

With farm animals, indoor and outdoor activities, tractor and trailer rides, crazy golf, assault courses, and so much more, it’s no wonder that Pennywell Farm is one of the most popular attractions in Devon! With over 150 animals, and activities running every hour, visitors to the farm struggle to fit it all in. Home to the world famous Pennywell Miniature pigs, alpacas, horses, goats and more, get up close to the animals who love the attention. Suitable for all the family, and with cafes and shops on site, Pennywell Farm is worth a visit if you love all things cute and cuddly.

They are iconic

Moors & Tors

It wouldn’t be Dartmoor without the dramatic moorland and towering tors! Whilst there are so many attractions, museums, and picturesque villages across the National Park, you can’t beat the natural rocks and landscape that gave the area its reputation. And with over 160 granite tors across the park, there are so many trails and routes you can plan to see as much as possible. Each tor has its own history, its own vantage point of Dartmoor, and its own variety of wildlife and nature around. Learn the myths and legends of each spot, collect stamps, spot the wildlife, sit for a picnic, or keep marching on!
Hear from our

Recent Guests

“The Shippen is a beautiful, well equipped cottage in a fantastic, peaceful location. It was super clean on arrival with the addition of a lovely welcome hamper. We had absolutely everything we needed for a week in Devon. We did have occasion to contact our hosts, who were super friendly and very helpful. I would thoroughly recommend and will definitely go back!”

Mrs. S

“The cottage is lovely and very well equipped. The owners were very helpful. We love this part of the country and this made a great base for a holiday here. Now we own a dog, it can be harder to find great accommodation which allows our pet. We will definitely visit again and have already recommended The Shippen to friends who are staying there next month.”

Mrs A

“Very well equipped cottage. Nice and bright living accommodation with tasteful furnishings. The welcome basket was a nice touch and really appreciated.”

Mr. P

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© Dartmoor Retreats – All Rights Reserved.
Website Design by MiHi Digital