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exterior of a historic Dartmoor manor house overlooking a large lawn

Our Favourite Family Attractions on Dartmoor and in West Devon

Dartmoor and the western side of Devon between Yelverton, Morwelham, and Holsworthy offer an enchanting blend of natural beauty, history, and adventure that appeals to adults, adolescents, and families alike. Whether hiking the moors, immersing yourself in history or enjoying a day of thrilling activities, this corner of Devon invites you to create cherished memories that will last a lifetime. Plan your next family getaway to this captivating region and discover the magic of Dartmoor and Devon's western wonders. Click on the title to view the website for each attraction.

Banner image photo: Great Bidlake Manor in Bridestowe

Where to Stay in Dartmoor and West Devon

Peruse a selection of fine holiday cottages in Dartmoor and West Devon, from large country houses to small thatched Dartmoor cottages.

Large Attractions:

Dartmoor National Park: A Natural Playground

Begin your journey in the Dartmoor National Park, a sprawling expanse of rugged terrain that beckons explorers of all ages. With its network of walking trails, you can set off on exhilarating hikes that lead to ancient tors, lush valleys, and hidden waterfalls. For families, Dartmoor provides ample opportunities for picnics, wildlife spotting, and even pony trekking. Don't forget to visit the National Park Visitor Centres for educational exhibits and interactive displays that bring Dartmoor's unique history.

Address: Dartmoor National Park Authority, Parke, Bovey Tracey, Newton Abbot, Devon TQ13 9JQ


Phone: 01626 832093

Plymouth Aquarium

The National Marine Aquarium is located in the city of Plymouth, this expansive aquarium, the largest in the UK, allows you to explore the mysteries of the deep sea. Get up close and personal with a diverse range of marine life, including sharks, turtles, and colourful tropical fish.

Address: Rope Walk
Coxside, Plymouth, PL4 0LF


Phone: 0844 893 7938

Dartmoor Zoo

Situated near Plymouth, this zoo is a fantastic place for families to observe and learn about a variety of animals, including big cats, meerkats, and primates. It also offers educational programs and interactive experiences.

Address: Sparkwell, Plymouth, Devon, PL57 5DG


Phone: 01752 837645

Becky Falls Ancient Woodland Park

Tucked within the Dartmoor National Park, this woodland park offers scenic trails that lead to a breath-taking waterfall. The park is a great place for family hikes and picnics, with opportunities for wildlife spotting.

Address: Becky Falls Ancient Woodland Park Limited, Manaton, Newton Abbot, Devon, TQ13 9UG


Phone: 01647 221259

Pennywell Farm

Located near Buckfastleigh, Pennywell Farm is a fantastic attraction for families with young children. You can interact with adorable farm animals, enjoy entertaining shows, help with feeding times and even try your hand at mini-pig racing.

Address: Pennywell Farm & Wildlife Centre Buckfastleigh, Devon, TQ11 OLT


Phone: 01364 642023

South Devon Railway

Take a nostalgic Great Western Railway journey following the bustling River Dart along the southern fringes of Dartmoor. This heritage railway runs between Buckfastleigh and Totnes. It's a delightful picturesque experience for train enthusiasts and families alike.

Address: South Devon Railway, Dart Bridge Road, Buckfastleigh, Devon, TQ11 0DZ


Phone: 01364 644 370

Museum of Dartmoor Life

Located in Okehampton, this museum provides insight into the history and heritage of Dartmoor. It's an excellent place for children and adults to learn about the region's past through engaging exhibits and activities.

Address: 3 West St, Okehampton EX20 1HQ


Phone: 01837 52295

Miniature Pony Centre

Situated near Moretonhampstead, this charming attraction, ‘the gateway to the rich history of Dartmoor,’ allows, amongst other exhibits, children to interact with adorable miniature ponies, explore the animal barn, ride the train, burn off some energy in various play areas and enjoy pony rides.

Address: The Miniature Pony Centre, North Bovey, Moretonhampstead, Devon, TQ13 8RG


Phone: 01647 432400

Lydford Gorge

A stunning National Trust-managed natural attraction, Lydford Gorge offers dramatic, photogenic walks along a ravine carved by the River Lyd. Children will love exploring the woodland trails and viewing the impressive Whitelady Waterfall.

Address: Lydford, near Tavistock, Devon, EX20 4BH


Phone: 01822820320

Okehampton Castle

Explore the ruins of this medieval castle in Okehampton. While not as extensive as some castles, This English Heritage-managed castle is an intriguing site for families to discover and imagine the area's fascinating history.

Address: Castle Lodge, Castle Lane, Okehampton, EX20 1JA


Phone: 0870 333 1181

Canonteign Falls

Visit England's highest man-made waterfall just South of Dartmoor near Chudleigh. Canonteign Falls offers scenic walks, nature trails, and the chance to spot wildlife in a beautiful wooded valley.

Address: Canonteign Falls, Christow, Nr Exeter, Devon, EX6 7RH


Phone: 01647 252434

Castle Drogo

This imposing castle near Drewsteignton is the last castle built in England and is managed by The National Trust. Explore the gardens, enjoy family-friendly activities, and learn about the castle's history and inhabitants.

Address: Drewsteignton, near Exeter, Devon, EX6 6PB


Phone: 01647433306

Buckfast Butterfly and Dartmoor Otter Sanctuary:

Located in Buckfastleigh, this sanctuary allows you to get up close to butterflies from around the world and observe playful otters in their aquatic enclosures.

Address:   Buckfast Butterflies & Dartmoor Otter Sanctuary,

                  Buckfastleigh, Devon, TQ11 0DZ


Phone:     07761 447219

Western Devon

Discover many entertaining, family-friendly attractions from the North Devon coast to the South Devon coast. Here are a few suggestions that will appeal to all ages.

Tavistock Wharf

This cultural hub in Tavistock hosts various family-friendly events throughout the year, including live theatre performances, concerts, and film screenings.

Address: Canal Road, Tavistock, Devon, PL19 8AT


Phone: 01822 611166


Roadford Lake

Located near Lifton, Roadford Lake offers water-based activities like sailing and kayaking, scenic walks, and a children's play area.

Address: Roadford Lake Activity Centre, Broadwoodwidger, Lifton, Devon, PL16 0JL


Phone: 01409 211507

Okehampton Railway and Museum

Discover the history of rail travel in Okehampton at this beautifully preserved 1930s Southern Railway station and its small but engaging  Arthur Westlake Museum. You can explore vintage railway carriages and learn about the area's railway heritage.



Dingles Fairground Heritage Centre

Situated in Lifton, this unique attraction showcases vintage fairground rides and games. It's a nostalgic experience for adults and a fun adventure for kids.

Address: Fairground Heritage Trust, Milford Lifton, Devon PL16 0AT


Phone: 01566 783425

War Horse Valley Country Farm Park

Found near Okehampton, this farm park allows kids to get close to a variety of farm animals, learn about rural life, and participate in hands-on activities.

Address: War Horse Valley Country Farm Park, Iddesleigh, Hatherleigh, Devon, EX19 8SN


Phone: 01837 810318

Gnome Reserve and Wild Flower Gardens

 Situated in a new location at The Merry Harriers Garden Centre near Woolfardisworthy (pronounced locally as Woolsery), this unique attraction is a delightful place for children and adults to explore whimsical gnome homes and enjoy the colourful wildflower garden. Admission to the Gnome Reserve is free.

Address: Merry Harriers Garden Centre, Woolsery, Bideford, EX39 5QH

Phone: 01237 431611