United Kingdom, South Devon, Dartmoor,

Wild Devon in July

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Group Tour
6 Days
From £953
GEOIP Not Available
Whale Watching
Self Drive
Photographic
Conservation and Rewilding

Tour Introduction

6 Days from £953
GEOIP Not Available
per adult. Prices based on rates applicable at the time of costing which may vary. Please ask for a definitive quote

Led by some of Devon’s most experienced natural history guides, this insightful small group holiday takes you on a fascinating journey through Devon’s varied habitats and history and reveals some its most exciting wildlife.

We start by exploring the rugged landscapes of Dartmoor where ancient woodlands, upland pastures and fascinating blanket bogs where fascinating plant, insect and bird life can be discovered. We can also learn from experts about the varied human history of Dartmoor, its legends, inspiration and future.

We also spend a day on the geologically rich and stunning South Devon coast, one of the most scenic in the United Kingdom. We spend a day cruising the coast of Torbay, a UNESCO Global Geopark with a surprisingly diverse marine life offshore. Our dedicated natural history boat trip will give the best chance of memorable encounters with pods of playful common dolphins and harbour porpoises, curious Atlantic grey seals and abundant seabirds. The headland of Berry Head, a National Nature Reserve, will reveal resplendent coastal wildflower colour and is also notable for cirl buntings, butterflies and geological history.

On another day we will visit a small yet exciting and inspiring rewilding project where nature is recovering and habitat creation is being driven by the return of natural ecosystem engineers such as heck cattle, wild boar, beavers and Exmoor ponies. We will take an insightful guided walk through the land alongside seeing and photographing a great range of rare British mammals and birds being bred for reintroduction projects.

A definite highlight will hopefully be spotting one of the families of Eurasian beavers living in the valley bottom, one of the few populations now re-established in England after an absence of 400 years. Their habitat creation along with the presence of large herbivores such as water buffalo and heck cattle has in turn helped successful reintroductions of water voles and pool frogs.

Accommodation is of a good standard, with a mixture of gentle paced walks through a wide range of beautiful landscapes. The group has been kept deliberately small to maximise wildlife viewing and access to your guides, who have extensive and profound knowledge of the region’s natural history.

Please note that for 2021 we are running these departures on a drive yourself basis. Each participant will need to travel to each of the specified locations themselves in their own private vehicle. Detailed locations, maps and satnav addresses will be provided.

Click here for full tour details

For a taster of some of the wildlife and landscapes that can be seen, have a look at our in-house short film here: Wild Devon Video

 

Full Itinerary

Price from £953
GEOIP Not Available
per adult. Based on sharing double / twin rooms
Day 1
Dartmoor

Arrive at your accommodation in the centre of Dartmoor.

Staying at Two Bridges Hotel . Includes No Meals.

Day 2
Dartmoor National Park

Today we will have an introduction to Dartmoor National Park. We will start this morning with a self-drive (30 minutes) to the granite rocks of Hookney Tor. On a clear day we can enjoy sweeping views over the landscapes of Dartmoor. We will also learn about the Bronze Age settlement of Grimspound.

We will also spend time exploring the valley bottom at Challacombe Farm, where we will plan to meet with the owners for an introduction to the history, ecology and wildlife friendly management of this diverse site which includes the rare rhos pasture.

Staying at Two Bridges Hotel . Includes Breakfast and Lunch.

Day 3
Torbay Coast

Today we will visit the beautiful coastline of Torbay for a cruise into the coastal waters in search of common dolphins, porpoises, grey seals, and other marine life.

After a traditional and sustainable fish and chips lunch in the quaint fishing town of Brixham we will explore the dramatic Berry Head National Nature Reserve. At this time of year, the headland is home to nesting seabirds, many butterflies and insects, and ablaze with wildflower colour.

This evening there is the option to join a evemning wildlife walk at the Coombeshead Rewilding Reserve. Wildlife that may be encountered includes, badgers, foxes, bats, barn owls and glow worms.

Staying at Two Bridges Hotel . Includes Breakfast and Lunch.

Day 4
Coombeshead Rewilding Reserve

Today we will visit Coombeshead a small but exciting and diverse rewilding project close to Dartmoor National Park on the Devon and Cornwall border. Over 150 acres of previously intensively managed farmland is now being given back to nature to recover and set its own course.

Coombeshead is also home to one of the UK’s largest native species reintroduction breeding centres with wildcats, beavers, water voles, harvest mice and white and black storks among some of the species being bred for pioneering reintroduction projects around the UK.

In the afternoon we can enjoy a guided walk through the rewilding reserve where we will pass herds of Exmoor ponies, wild boar, water buffalo and mouflon sheep. After dinner we will take an evening amble down to the valley bottom where we hope to spot beavers. This will be an exciting and inspiring day with plenty of wildlife photography opportunities.

Staying at Two Bridges Hotel . Includes All Meals.

Day 5
Dartmoor National Park

We will have a full day to explore more of Dartmoor National Park, venturing onto the notorious high moor which features in many Dartmoor legends and stories, most famously the Hound of the Baskervilles. Our route and walks taken will depend on local conditions, but we will aim to focus on blanket bogs, as well as exploring other habitats such as mires and upland streams.

Through the expertise of our local guide, we can learn all about the fascinating plant communities and incredible water and carbon storage of these habitats.

Staying at Two Bridges Hotel . Includes Breakfast and Lunch.

Day 6
Dartmoor National Park

This morning we will set off for our final walk: a one-and-a-half-mile amble (across some uneven and rocky terrain) along the West Dart river valley to the ancient Wistman’s Wood. This is one of Dartmoor’s most enchanting and special woods. Sitting at an altitude of just over 400 metres, it is one of Britain’s highest oak woods and a Site of Special Scientific Interest.

There is a unique feel to Wistman’s Wood with its stunted and gnarled English oak trees growing no more than 20 feet high.

We will return to the hotel after our packed lunch for departure.

Includes Breakfast and Lunch.

Download the full details of this itinerary and start planning your trip today.

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Tour Accommodation

United Kingdom Dartmoor

Two Bridges Hotel

Overview

Located in the heart of Dartmoor National Park where the Cowsic and West Dart Rivers meet, the Two Bridges Hotel provides a perfect base to not only explore Dartmoor, but also both north and south Devon.

The hotel became known as the Two Bridges Hotel in the early 20th century, but records show a hostelry has existed on the site for over 225 years! It is now a comfy, characterful hotel with 32 individually designed ensuite rooms divided into Premier, Historic and Country rooms.

The Tors Restaurant serves the very best in seasonal produce from local farms, fisherman and producers. Lighter bites are served in the lounges, cosy bar and outside, where the expansive garden stretches to the banks of the West Dart River. A perfect location to enjoy an afternoon cream tea!

Swimming Pool
No
Air Conditioning
No
Rooms
32
Facilities

Restaurant, lounges, bar, large riverside garden, and complimentary WiFi in most areas of the hotel.

Local Wildlife

Nearby there are a variety of habitats to explore, including ancient Wistman's Wood which is just a one mile easy walk from the doorstep of the hotel.

Optional Activities

Wildlife, history and nature walks across Dartmoor and beyond.

Route Map

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Dartmoor: 50.571886, -3.920688
Two Bridges Hotel: 50.558126, -3.965179

Departure Dates

Tour Dates
Adult Price
Single Supp
11/07/2021
£953
£385

Travel Information

Are International Flights Included?

No. Please contact us for a quote if required.

Best Visited:

July to August

Are you ATOL Registered?

Yes. This means we are legally able to book your international flights in conjunction with your ground arrangements so you can book with us with complete confidence. Read more about our ATOL license here.

Ian Loyd

Area Specialist

If you have any questions regarding this Tour, please feel free to contact me on +44 (0)1803 866965