Our suggested walk takes you along the Dartmoor section of the Two Moor Way. This unspoilt wilderness in the heart of Devon offers heather and bracken covered moorland, interspersed with deep wooded river valleys. Granite tors occasionally breached the skyline, whilst wild ponies roam the wild and open landscape. Archaeological remains of stone circles and enclosures from the Iron and Bronze Ages intermix with Dartmoor's more recent tin and iron mining past. Along the route are some picturesque villages, many with buildings dating back to the Medieval Ages, each one with its own tale.
Ivybridge grew around the medieval packhorse bridge that gave it its name. It was the only means of crossing the River Erme for over 500 years until the construction of a second bridge in 1829. Today, it is a bustling little with with an arts and entertainment centre. Once you leave Ivybridge, you will very quickly find yourself in open moorland, though. There will be neither settlement nor refreshment for the next 12 miles until you reach Scorriton! The route follows initially a disused tram track. Bronze Age remains and former mining activities litter the route. As you descend the last mile to Scoriton, you can enjoy well-deserved extensive views on your right to Torbay, as reward for your effort. The landscape changes to green farmland.
The route passes through the villages of Scorriton and Holne (possible overnight stops), through Cleave Wood before re-entering open moorland. It then drops down to Ponsworthy, an attractive hamlet with thatched cottages and a single arched bridge that is worth a diversion. Continuing north, the route passes through woods and fields before taking you back to open moorland.
Widecombe-in-the-Moor, not too far off the route, is worth an overnight stop or rest day with its interesting mix of historical buildings. There is a popular monthly market and, from April to October, Devon crafters bring the fruit of their labour and artistry to a craft market held in the Church House. Back on the route, Bronze Age burial mounts litter its length as it straddles the ridge on Hamel Down, including the well-preserved Bronze Age enclosure of Grimspound. Within the massive granite walls are the remains of hut circles (some restored) and stone buildings. Past Bennett's Cross - there is indeed a cross - are more disused mine workings. The Path passes for a while alongside Fernworthy Forest, along Chagford Common, leaving behind moorland for fields and farmland. The Path weaves through several small woodlands and, at one stage, it walks alongside the River Teign, on which river sits the lovely little town of Chagford.
Chagford was once an important centre for tin and, later, wool. The wealth generated by these two industries is reflected in the many splendid buildings that you see today, some of which go back to the 15th century. Further along the river is Castle Drogo with impressive views over Dartmoor. This impressive medieval looking castle was actually built in the 1910s and 1920s. There are themed rooms through the centuries but with the mod cons of the 21st.
Drewsteignton is another pretty village in a picturesque setting, with thatched cottages and a parish church that goes as far back as 15th century. Just north of Drewsteignton, on the edge of Dartmoor National Park, is an impressive memorial stone to Joe Turner who set up the Two Moors Way. It is one half of a boulder, with the cut face mirroring the other half, which is 30miles away to the north on the outskirt of Exmoor National Park. The Path continues north through rolling fields and woodlands and after Hittisleigh a two miles stretch on the road. Much of this section is well-marked. The route ends at Colebrooke, 0.5miles/0.8km off the Two Moors Way. The 14-15 century church there has some interesting relief carvings - of a Wild Man and a fool!
The nearest railway stations to the route are listed below.
Ivybridge: On route
Yeoford: Colebrooke 2.2miles/3.5km
Copplestone: Colebrooke 2 miles/3.2;
The National Rail Map provides a map of the rail network for you to plan your journey.
The nearest National Express long distance coach stops are listed below.
Ivybridge: on route
Totnes: Scorriton 9.2 miles/14.8km and Holne 9.8 miles/15.8km
Newton Abbot: Widecombe-in-the-Moor 11.7 miles/18.8km and Chagford 17 miles/27.4km
National Express has a route network with over 1,000 UK destinations. The best value tickets will be secured with advance booking.
There is a limited bus network along the route due to the remoteness of some of the areas, in particular over Dartmoor and Exmoor National Park.
Ivybridge is easily accessible by car, being cose to Plymouth and just off the A30 dual carriage. Colebrooke is also easily accessible, being just off the A377 around 20km north west of Exeter.
We may be able to arrange car parking at your first nights accommodation for the duration of your walking holiday. This will be subject to availability and may incur a small extra charge.
It is possible to reurn to your car by train from Yeoford to Ivybridge via Exeter. We will be happy to advise on the public transport options and also to get quotes and book a return journey by taxi for you if you prefer.
We are not offering Dartmoor walking holidays in 2020.
Good navigational and map reading skills are recommended.
The route is waymarked, although good navigational and map reading skills will be required over the moorland stretches
March to October.
We specialise in providing walking holidays in Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Pembrokeshire and Somerset. We are enthusiastic about outdoor pursuits and have experienced climbing, canoeing, skiing, caving and potholing and windsurfing as well as walking throughout the UK, France, Spain, Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand.
We use our experience to provide self-guided, pack-free walking holidays, tailored to the requirements and abilities of our clients.