Staying in Braunton means you are never too far from the best of North Devon, the beautiful golden beaches of Woolacombe, Croyde and Saunton are only a short drive away, as are many of the pretty seaside towns and villages, including Ilfracombe and Appledore.
Exploring the region is also relatively easy and can be done by car, on foot or via a bike. The handy Tarka Trail starts in Braunton and is a great way to travel to the nearby market town of Barnstaple, and the South West Coast Path also winds its way past the village.
Some of our favourite places to visit can be seen below.
North Devon is home to some of the most beautiful beaches, whether you are looking for golden sands or rock pools there is something for everyone. The largely unspoilt coastline is home to the award-winning Woolacombe, the surfing haven of Croyde and the stunning Saunton Sands, which is the closest to North Street Cottage and sheltered by Braunton Burrows. There are also some hidden beaches around the coastline, which are well worth visiting, such as Barricane Beach, Rockham Beach, Woody Bay and Broadsands.
All of North Devon’s beaches are linked via the South West Coast Path, which is an excellent way to see the coastline with its dramatic cliffs and breath-taking views over the Bristol Channel and Atlantic Ocean.
The breath-taking Braunton Burrows are easily accessed in the village and are a great place to enjoy a walk. The Burrows, which are the largest sand dune system in England have been awarded several designations over the years, including a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, a Site of Special Scientific Interest and a Special Area of Conservation. The Burrows also form an integral part of North Devon’s Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
To truly understand the size of the Burrows it is best witnessed from the hills above Saunton Sands, from here you can see all the way to the Taw and Torridge Estuary.
The Burrows are dog friendly, however the area is home to nesting birds and livestock, so please keep dogs under-control.
Baggy Point is the name for the headland that overlooks Croyde. It is the best place in North Devon to see the waves and cliffs that dominate this area. Managed by the National Trust there are cycle routes that start at the Point heading to either Woolacombe or Barnstaple and plenty of footpaths to suit all abilities of walkers. The headland is a great place to see some of the local marine life and a family activity pack can be collected from the car park hunt to help you and your children make the most of your visit.
The pretty seaside resort of Ilfracombe is a wonderful place to spend a few hours with plenty on offer for all the family. The harbour town has lots of pubs and restaurants with some of the most popular being found down by the sea, these include Damian Hirst’s 11, The Quay, which is only a short walk from the contemporary artist’s bronze clad statue ‘Verity’.
The Victorian town has lots of charm and character, as well as many attractions, such as the Landmark Theatre, Ilfracombe Aquarium and Tunnels Beach. It is also the place to set sail from when heading to Lundy Island with boats regularly sailing from the harbour during the peak holiday season.
Clovelly is a highlight for many visitors to North Devon with its cobbled streets and white washed cottages providing a wonderful setting for a day trip. The village is set into a steep hillside and the cobbled high street is only accessible on foot, although a Land Rover service does transport visitors up and down from the car park to the harbour via a back road. Once at the harbour there is a nice pub to enjoy a meal and you can even admire the local fishermen as they tend to their nets and daily catch.
Exmoor meets the sea at Lynton and Lynmouth, otherwise known as ‘Little Switzerland’. The seaside village of Lynmouth, along with the countryside town of Lynton have a laid-back atmosphere, which is ideal for those looking to relax and unwind. The twin resorts have plenty to offer their visitors too, including the water-powered Cliff Railway, which ferries guests between Lynton and Lynmouth, as well as the Valley of the Rocks, which has some of the best views, especially those of the sunset from North Walk.
Finish your visit to Lynton and Lynmouth with a traditional cream tea in one of the many cafés, or enjoy fish and chips on the sea wall as you watch the boats come and go.