Devon and Cornwall can offer so much, stunning scenery, open countryside, secluded beaches, mythical castles & good food to name a few. Starting off in the town of Minehead, which is actually in Somerset, take the A39 and travel West towards Porlock and the Porlock Hills. Minehead is also the start of the incredible South West Coastal Path which for the walkers is up there with the best in the UK.
There are so many quaint and wonderful towns and villages along the route such as Countisbury, Foreland Point & Lighthouse and Lynmouth. Consider stopping off at such places as the Valley of the Rocks and Lee Abbey and the toll road to Woody Bay.
Stay on the A39 until you reach Blackmoor Gate, then take the A399 towards Combe Martin. This is the village with the longest high street in England and the highest sea cliff – there’s a fact for you pub quiz experts.
After Combe Martin it’s off to Ilfracombe, Mortoe and one of our personal favourites, Woolacombe. Woolacombe is a fabulous little town, popular with surfers and a great beach. Look out for the Sri Lankan beach cafe serving great food on Barricane Beach, also the perfect place to entertain yourselves with a stone skimming competition.
If the weather is good the sunsets from the headland are to die for.
Another great beach is Croyde, a short drive from Woolacombe, for those of you who enjoy a scenic coastal walk, park up in Croyde and walk along the coastal path to Baggy Point. After leaving Croyde you can head off towards Downend Point and Saunton Beach before leaving on the B3231 towards Braunton and Barnstaple.
The route from Minehead to Barnstaple is approximately 90 miles, depending on your exact route but there are many places to stay.
Below are a few suggestions: –
- Minehead Caravan Club Site, Hopcott Road, Minehead, Somerset, TA24 6DJ
- Damage Barton Caravan and Camping Site, Mortoe, EX34 7EJ, Tel: 01271 870502 http://www.damagebarton.co.uk
- Woolacombe Bay Holiday Parks www.woolacombe.co.uk
- Ruda Holiday Park, Croyde Bay, Croyde, EX33 1NP Tel: 0333 207 6964 https://www.parkdeanresorts.co.uk/location/devon/ruda/touring-and-camping/
Leaving Barnstaple on the A39 Atlantic Highway travel South towards Bude, another favourite of ours. The road twists, turns, climbs and drops its way along its merry way, however before reaching Bude a must-see place is the picturesque fishing village of Clovelly. Clovelly clings to a 400-foot cliff in North Devon and has no vehicular traffic on its steeply cobbled street, just donkeys and sledges. Visiting Clovelly is such a special experience. It is a beautiful picturesque fishing village, steeped in maritime atmosphere and history and was once owned by the Queen of England.
Its flower-strewn cottages “tumble like a waterfall” down a cleft in the cliff to the ancient working port. There are breathtaking views down the traffic-free high street. The street is unique with just its donkeys and sledges. And the working harbour, with its 14th century quay, is another scene to be captured as a treasured memory.
To get the best out of the Atlantic Highway you have to make little forays down little country roads to such places as Peppercombe, and Welcombe to find small isolated coves and combes before reaching the town of Bude. Bude is another personal favourite of ours with so many wonderful memories of family holidays. The area offers a number of beaches such as Summerleaze, Crooklets and Widemouth all safely patrolled by lifeguards from the RNLI (subject to time of year).
Beyond Bude head towards Upton, Millhook and Crackington Haven before re-joining the A39 and travelling towards Newquay, along the way it is worth paying visits to Tintagel and its castle set high on Cornwall’s rugged coast which is heavily linked with the legend of King Arthur, the fishing village of Boscastle, a National Trust sheltered natural inlet with an unspoilt harbour and Port Isaac.
The town of Wadebridge is where the Camel Trail starts and is popular with cyclists cycling the flat and gentle 5 miles (10 miles return) to Padstow where Fish & Chips from Rick Stein’s is a must.
And finally, from leaving Wadebridge it is off to Newquay for more Cornish delights, Fistral Beach offers the annual Boardmasters Surf Festival, as well as other fine beaches, Newquay Zoo is another family favourite.
The route from Barnstaple to Newquay is around 80 miles but with so much in between that is likely to be your minimum. Everybody has a different outlook for visiting Cornwall, be it the stunning coastal walks, quaint picturesque villages, the beach and surf life and of course cider, cream teas and Cornish pasties. What more could you want…………….
Places to stay in your campervan
- Trewethett Farm Caravan Club Site, Trethevy, Tintagel, PL34 0BQ. Tel: 01840 770222
- Wooda Farm Holiday Park, Poughill, Bude, EX 23 9H www.wooda.co.uk
- Newquay Holiday Park, Newquay, TR8 4HS www.parkdeanresorts.co.uk
Great Escape Campers