things to do
Explore beautiful North Devon
Upcott House is ideally placed for a totally relaxing holiday away from the hustle and bustle or, for the adventurous and active, there are ample opportunities for walking, cycling, surfing, wildlife watching or visits to historic places.
The market town of Barnstaple with its shops, restaurants and historic Pannier Market is only three miles away, and from there you can take the train to the county town of Exeter, leisurely travelling through the scenic Exe Valley.
To the north are the Victorian towns of Ilfracombe and Combe Martin, and the picturesque villages of Lynton and Lynmouth linked by a unique water-driven cliff railway – a must-do experience!
If it’s the beach you want, there are several famous and fabulous, mile-long stretches of golden sand within a very short drive. Saunton, Croyde and Woolacombe are legendary surfing beaches in the West Country, but they also offer a great family experience of soaking up the sun or splashing around in the waves.
Behind Saunton Sands beach are Braunton Burrows, a huge sand dune system with an incredible variety of rare plants and animals. Along the coast there are long- and short-distance footpath walks taking in exhilarating views of sea, land and sky.
Further afield is Exmoor, where you may chance on a herd of the famous red deer or see some Exmoor ponies, an ancient breed of horses dating back to the Iron Age, or you might stop off at one of the many historic moorland pubs.
Exmoor is considered by many to be the most beautiful of England’s National Parks, and there are plenty of hidden gems of places to find.
For the more active holidaymaker, there are opportunities for fishing, sailing, canoeing or windsurfing.
The Tarka Trail footpath and cycleway runs on both sides of the estuary and, to the south side, out towards Great Torrington, where you can stop off to watch glass being blown at the Dartington Glass factory. Bikes can be hired in Barnstaple or Braunton.
Portmore golf course is close by in the village of Landkey, or for a bracing round of golf by the sea, there are the links courses of Saunton and Westward Ho!, and at Westward Ho! there are also pony rides and sea-based adventure schools.
There are plenty of restaurants and pubs in the local area providing a wide choice of places to eat out.