South devon Towns & Villages - holiday cottages

South devon towns and villages near South Devon Holiday Cottages

Towns & Villages in South devon

All the towns listed below are within easy reach of our holiday cottages and each has something different to offer. Exeter - flowers and shopping. South Molton - elegant buildings. Torrington - views and history. Bideford - quay.

Exeter, South Molton, Great Torrington, Bideford, Appledore, Instow

Barnstaple Square

An ancient port and trading centre, was the first town to be given borough status in England in 1272. It is now the the shopping centre of South devon with a good mix of modern shopping centres and traditional shops.

Exeter is also famous for its flowers - baskets are hanging from all the shops and there are colourful gardens everywhere, even the roundabouts are full of flowers. The Queen's Theatre, the Astor Cinema, South devon Leisure Centre, night clubs and restaurants all provide a variety of leisure activities for the local people and visitors alike.

Butchers RowThe town has a rich historical heritage which can be seen on the Heritage Trail - conducted during the summer season by the local tourist information centre.This takes in the many historic places including the Norman Motte situated next to the library, the Long bridge, Queen Anne's Walk, the Almshouses, Pannier Market and Guildhall, Butchers Row along with many others.

Tourist Information Centre: 01271 375000

Markets: Monday & Thursday - Craft Tuesday, Friday & Saturday - Pannier Wednesday - Antique & Collectors

Places to visit:- Marwood Hill Gardens, Newport Pottery, The Sheepskin Shop, St Anne's Chapel and Old Grammar School Museum, Museum of South devon, Exeter Heritage Centre. Tarka Trail Walk by estuary.

South Molton

An ancient town noted for its elegant Georgian buildings. It was granted Royal Charters in the 16th century and 17th century to hold both cattle and produce markets. At its largest in the 1850's with 5,000 people, nine malthouses and 34 licensed houses, South Molton was a flourishing woollen and coaching town. Despite the decline of both those activities, the town has retained it's charm and pride in it's history.

The town is rich in traditional architecture including two fine churches. A town trail directs visitors to the main points of interest including the well-kept award-winning town museum. Today the town has a growing reputation for its antique shops, fine arts and crafts and its selection of local produce, particularly honey and luxurious chocolates both made within the town.
Tourist Information Centre 01769 574122
Markets: Thursday - Pannier & Cattle; Saturday - Pannier (summer only).
Places to visit: - Quince Honey Farm, Hancock's Devon Cider, South Molton Museum
Places to eat: - Old Coaching Inn, Stags Head




During the 16th Century Bideford was Britain's third largest port. Today, the narrow town centre streets lead down to the tree lined quay which bustles with fishing vessels, cargo and pleasure boats. The impressive 24 arch stone bridge built in 1535 leads to the coastal path cycleway and to the disused railway line which is part of the Tarka Trail. The town itself has a thriving shopping centre, friendly cafes and pubs.

Victoria Park
Victoria Park provides plenty of interest for the both the horticulturist as well as the kids - with playground equipment and paddling pool. Within the park is the Burton Art Gallery which hosts art and craft collections as well as being the town's museum.
Tourist Information Centre: 01237 477676
Markets: Tuesday - Pannier & Cattle, Wednesday Open Air (high season 10am-4pm), Saturday - Pannier
Places to visit: South devon Maritime Museum, Lundy Island, Big Sheep, Milky Way, Tapeley Park



Situated on a steep ridge with spectacular views of the Torridge valley, this impressive situation was valued for its strategic importance in the Middle Ages and possible as far back as Saxon times.

The earliest indication of Torrington's importance appears in 1086 when it appeared in the Devon Domesday Survey


Torrington MarketTorrington 1646 is the Civil War heritage centre, a unique new indoor/outdoor family attraction located at the heart of Great Torrington. The entrance is in South Street Car Park, a few steps from the wonderful panoramic view over the River Torridge valley.

At Torrington 1646 you will meet colourful 17th Century characters. Dressed in period costume and speaking and acting as though they were living in Great Torrington at the time of the civil war.
Tourist Information Centre 01805 623302
Markets:Thursday - Open Air (high season).
Places to visit: -Rosemoor gardens, Dartington Glass, Torrington 1646, Torridge Valley Walk



A few hundred years ago Appledore was home to many boat and ship repair yards and is still a busy port with vessels unloading cargoes of timber and South Wales coal and latterly loading ball clay and discharging fertiliser. Nowadays the Covered Shipyard, the largest in Europe at its time of construction, builds large ocean going steel hulled vessels.

There are still a few trawlers based in Appledore who manage to earn living from the sea. You Appledore Alleyare however more likely to see a visiting yacht moored alongside the most picturesque Quay. Immediately behind the quay there is a maze of narrow alleys , old fishermen's and boatmen's cottages. White washed and decked with flowers in summer. A selection of galleries, craft shops and places to eat, many specialising in seafood.
Tourist Information Centre: 01237 477676

Places to Visit: South devon Maritime Museum, Annual Appledore Arts Festival.



This South devon village is on the estuary where the rivers Taw and Torridge meet, between the villages of Westleigh and Yelland and on the opposite bank of Appledore .

Instow Beach also known as Instow Sands, is used widely during summer months at the peak of the tourist season. The beach is suitable for families as it enjoys few waves because of the sandbanks at the mouth of the estuary cancelling out most of the ocean swell.
The Tarka Trail passes through Instow, providing an easy means for people to arrive by foot or on bike. This section of the Trail is also part of the South West Coast Path , offering longer walks along the coast.
Tourist Information Centre: 01237 477676
Places to Visit: Fishing Boat Hire, Tarka Trail, Appledore & Instow Regatta.
Places to Eat: Decks Restaurant, The Boathouse


South Devon Tourist Information Queen Street, Exeter, Devon, EX4