Devon - a fantastic taste of rural England
Devon is a delight. Rolling hills and narrow
twisting roads. Sprawling moors and sandy beaches.
Traditional village life reminiscent of a time
gone by intermingles in complete harmony with
the 21st century, bringing you about as far from
the hustle and bustle of big city life as you
can get, without ever forgoing the conveniences
in southwest England, sandwiched between Cornwall
to the southwest and Dorset
to the northeast, the county of Devon (or Devonshire
as it is sometimes called, although there seems
to be a dispute regarding the correct terminology)
is unique in that it is has two separate coastlines,
one on the Bristol Channel, the other on the English
a delightful cathedral city, is the county capital.
A large portion of the county is rural or National
Park land and has a relatively low population
density. The many seaside resorts, places of historic
interest and breathtaking landscapes designated
areas of outstanding natural beauty account for
the droves of tourists attracted to the area.
you do or do not do - don't even think of
foregoing scones and clotted cream with your
tea. No matter if you're on the strictest
diet of all time, or if cakes are not your
cup of tea, you just have to give them a try.
You may gain a few pounds, but you won't be
Badger's Holt, in Dartmoor for fantastic
tea and scones with clotted cream
Touring Devon by motorhome is a great way to relax,
especially if you're a city boy, like me. Ther
is absolutely a myriad of great things you can
do, and I'm not talking about just lounging around
your campsite either. The names of the towns chime
in your ears, seemingly beckoning you to visit
- Ottery St. Mary, Morchard Bishop, Luffincott
and others all come to mind.
is a must-see. The cathedral is magnificent and
a stroll through the streets of the old town are
a delight. We were there on a warm summer's day,
and the many grassy public areas were filled with
people sunbathing or just taking a break. It's
fun to stroll through the winding streets of the
tiny towns along the way, too.
you love nature, and if you're touring Devon that's
pretty much a prerequisite, Dartmoor,
now a National Park, is a place where you could
easily spend a week. I actually found that Arthur
Conan-Doyle's rather morbid depiction of the moors
in the Sherlock Holmes classic 'Hound of the Baskervilles'
to have no bearing on the sunny reality of these
sprawling moors- but then maybe it's different
moors are home to many types of wildlife,
including a unique and special breed of ponies
known as 'Dartmoor Ponies'. These midget horses
wander the moors freely, and are much admired
by visitors. A stroll along the banks of the
pristine rivers that flow through the park
is a relaxing delight.
Park authorities have done a very intelligent
job of blending the natural beauty of the park
with modern day living and commerce. There are
a few towns and farms within the boundaries of
the park, but these blend in so beautifully and
naturally they seem as if they have been there
forever - come to think of it, perhaps they have.
Of special interest was a horse-riding stable
situated in one of the corners of Dartmoor. The
other was the delightful Badger's Holt - previously
an old fishing lodge, it is now a tearoom/restaurant
situated at the famous beauty spot where the east
and west tributaries of the River Dart meet. Back
to a previous topic, they serve the most amazing
Devonshire Cream Teas with scones made according
to what they claim is a secret recipe they have
had in the family for over 50 years. Secret or
not - absolutely outstanding! And to think we
stumbled across them completely by accident.
you crave sea and beaches, the town of Paignton
is a pastel-colored delight, with fine, sprawling
beaches. My daughter, though, opted to spend the
time in the great water park.
boat ride on the river Dart, originating from
the picturesque little town of Dartmouth was fun
too. We got off at Totnes and returned by train.
On this line, the trains run on steam! Steam railways
- imagine that. While the ride was a trifle slow,
it proved to be the highlight of our excursion.
you aren't convinced yet that a touring Devon
by motorhome vacation is well worth your time,
I recommend this site
- stumbling upon it was what convinced me to visit
this wonderful part of the world in the first