Walking in North Devon and Exmoor

If you want to experience some of the best walking in the UK (yes, I mean that from experience) then the North Devon coast and the Exmoor National Park have some of the most challenging and scenic walking you could wish for. Because the South West Coast Path passes right through this area, the quality of the coastal footpath is kept high. The National Park also maintain its 300 miles of footpaths and bridleways to a high standard. What you will be impressed by is the standard of signage across the whole area. All the signs, bridle gates and stiles are made locally in the parks own workshops.

So, you are in for a walkers’ treat. All the Tourist Information Centres and National Park Centres have a good selection of walks leaflets to choose from. These are often written by locals who know the paths very well, so the routes taken are usually the best for that area. Overall, there should be very little road and field walking.
The South West Coast Path near Heddon Valley
Walking near Arlington Court (NT)
Great Hangman's cairn above Combe Martin
Where to find walks online
If you want to plan before coming on holiday, then try these websites. You may need to use the websites search facilities to pin the walks down to North Devon or Exmoor.

http://www.exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk/enjoying/walking/exmoor-walking-map and then click the map icons to get full details.

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/watersmeet/lists/the-best-walks-across-north-devon offers some great walks in North Devon.

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/heddon-valley/features/best-picnic-spots-in-north-devon offers some stunning picnic spots close to good walking country.

http://www.northdevon-aonb.org.uk/explore and then click the ‘Walks’ tab for the map to show the walks icons. Click the relevant icon(s) to get the full details of the walk.

https://www.southwestcoastpath.org.uk/ and click on Walks in the header and then use the search.

http://www.walkingworld.com/ and then use ‘Find a walk’ section and the ‘Area’ tab which does have ‘Devon’ and then ‘Exmoor’ in the dropdowns.
Walking above Exford
Walking near Watermouth Cove
Overlooking Broadstrand beach near Combe Martin
Advice for walking in this area
  • 1. Always wear quality walking boots with good grips
  • 2. Always take waterproofs or windproofs with you
  • 3. Always take plenty of water with you, and snacks or sandwiches if the walk does not have somewhere to get refreshments along the way
  • 4. Always take a walker’s OS map with you, Explorer OL9 for Exmoor, Explorer 139 for Bideford, Barnstaple and Ilfracombe
  • 5. Be aware of ticks. Check yourself over after a walk. Ideally wear long trousers tucked into your socks. You can get good tick removers from most of     the Tourist Information Centres
  • 6. This whole area is hilly, so a 9-mile walk is like a 12-14 mile walk in much of the rest of the country
  • 7. Remember that mobile signals are very patchy in this whole area, so you might have to search for a signal.
  • 8. Don’t forget your camera, it is very scenic around here
  • 9. Do not wild camp or light fires or BBQ’s
  • 10. Take all your litter home, leave only footprints, take away memories.

Enjoy some of the best walking in the country!

Combe Martin Museum/Information Point
Cross Street
Combe Martin
EX34 0DH
Telephone: 01271 889031
Combe Martin Tourism