Dartmoor, a way of life....



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Dartmoor National Park is 368 square miles of semi-natural landscape that has been created by thousands of years of human inhabitation. It is not just a National Park, an area protected for all to enjoy, it is a place where people live and work. It has seen many forms of industry, tin mining, farming of course and forestry but also once a potato starch factory and even now a company making weather satellite equipment! Evidence of hunting, settling and farming going back to the bronze age can still be seen today but it is the farming that has sculpted the landscape and keeps Dartmoor the way it is. Certainly it is the scenery that brings most people here but there is much more that brings them back, time and time again.

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For the physically active walking, letterboxing, cycling, horse riding, climbing, fishing and kayaking are common pursuits but exploring by car, visiting museums, investigating local history, admiring local arts and crafts and just simply shopping are equally enjoyed by visitors to Dartmoor.

Thriving market towns around the edges of the moor, picturesque villages nestling in wooded valleys, and hamlets and farms dotted across the high ground all have long and fascinating histories. Towns like Widecombe-in-the-Moor, made famous by the song, Chagford with its renowned hardware stores, Princetown built around the famous Dartmoor Prison and stannary towns like Ashburton and Tavistock are places that perhaps all visitors should see at sometime. Buckfastleigh and nearby Buckfast Abbey, Buckland Monachorum and Buckland Abbey, Okehampton and Bovey Tracey are all steeped in history.

Evidence of human habitation and activity on Dartmoor dates back 6000 years and many bronze age settlements, stone rows and stone circles are easy to find but not all are easy to explain or understand. Grimspound is one of the largest and most significant settlement sites and is not far from Postbridge.

Dartmoor Ponies
Dartmoor Ponies


On the open moors wildlife and farm livestock live together and the iconic Dartmoor ponies are often to be seen grazing or running free in family groups. Sheep often lie on the roads for warmth or to lick salt water from the catseyes and cattle will suddenly decide to cross the road with little regard for traffic.


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"What a great stay. We felt like we were staying with friends. Great food.
Will come again.
- Pete Shirley, Taunton
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Discover the Dartmoor National Park and enjoy a great holiday at any time of the year.

Welcome to Dartmoor National Park and the Dartmoor National Park Authority's web site


5 day weather forecast: Tavistock from the Met Office metoffice.gov.uk


"Gems in a Granite Setting", an overview of the many aspects of Dartmoor
legendary dartmoor.co.uk


Take a look at the largest human edited directory on the web...


Take an ineractive visit to Dartmoor with these excellent virtual tours of Postbridge, Princetown, Haytor and a devon long house at Higher Uppacott.