Short Breaks in Devon

Short Breaks in Devon: The Perfect Break

If you’re contemplating short breaks in Devon, you’re in for an experience that combines relaxation and adventure in a setting that’s nothing short of spectacular. Located in South West England, Devon is a haven for those seeking a brief yet memorable escape from the daily grind.

Its diverse landscapes range from jagged coastlines to tranquil rolling hills, offering a plethora of activities that promise to keep every traveller engaged.

This article is crafted with UK residents in mind, especially those yearning for a short break without the complexity of travelling abroad. If you live in cities like London or Birmingham, consider this your guide to a Devon experience that promises both tranquillity and excitement.

Here, we’ll explore what makes Devon a unique and perfect choice for a weekend getaway, from its breathtaking outdoor attractions to its delightful local cuisine.

Photo of the port of Bantham, in Devon. perfect for a short break.
The river Avon at Bantham in Devon

Why Devon is the Perfect Short Break

If you’re in search of the perfect locale for a short break that offers a balanced mix of culture, scenery, and contemporary amenities, look no further than Devon. This South West English county effortlessly marries the charm of traditional English life with the conveniences of the modern world.

Its diverse array of attractions means that there’s something for everyone, from the history buff eager to explore ancient ruins and stately homes, to the beach enthusiast craving the salty sea air and the feel of sand between their toes.

Photo of the Jurassic coast in Devon.
The incredible Jurassic coast, a must-see destination on any short break in Devon.

Devon’s unique selling point lies in its versatility. Whether you’re an adrenaline junkie wanting to tackle water sports off the coast of Torbay, or a nature lover aiming to stroll peacefully through the Dartmoor National Park, Devon caters to a wide range of tastes and interests.

It’s not just the activities that are diverse; the scenery is equally captivating. Picture-postcard villages, bustling market towns, and trendy coastal areas like Salcombe and Ilfracombe provide a rich tapestry of experiences that make Devon an ideal destination for short breaks.

Getting to Devon: Your Quick Guide

Reaching Devon couldn’t be more straightforward, given its exceptional transport links. If you opt for the train, you’re in for a treat: the journey from London takes roughly 3 hours, serving up panoramic views of the British countryside as you make your way southwest.

The main rail hubs in Devon are Exeter and Plymouth, both offering convenient access to other parts of the county. For those who prefer the freedom of driving, the M5 motorway runs directly into Devon.

Driving Times To Devon

Starting CityApproximate Driving Time to Devon
London3-4 hours
Glasgow7-8 hours
Edinburgh7-8 hours
Liverpool4-5 hours
Sheffield4-5 hours
Bristol2-3 hours

The Jurassic Coast: A Must-See in Devon

For those taking short breaks in Devon, the Jurassic Coast is an unmissable attraction. Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site, this geological wonder stretches over 95 miles, from East Devon to Dorset.

It’s a treasure trove for fossil enthusiasts, providing a tangible link to Earth’s prehistoric past. Each layer of sedimentary rock is like a page in a history book, chronicling life on this planet over 185 million years.

But the Jurassic Coast offers more than just a lesson in paleontology. The coastline is punctuated with natural limestone formations that are nothing short of breathtaking. One such landmark is the Durdle Door, an iconic limestone arch that has been sculpted by the hands of time.

Whether you’re interested in hiking, photography, or simply soaking in the views, the Jurassic Coast is a highlight that adds a layer of depth and excitement to any visit to Devon.

Photo of the Jurassic coastline in Devon, England
The coastline of Devon is truly stunning and offers a glimpse into the ancient world.

5 Places You Should Visit On Your Short Break In Devon

When you’re enjoying short breaks in Devon, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to attractions. Each locale is a jewel in its own right, contributing to the rich tapestry that makes Devon so intriguing.

Here are five essential places that offer a diverse range of experiences to enrich your visit:

  • Exeter Cathedral – This Gothic marvel stands as one of the finest examples of medieval architecture, capturing both history and spirituality.
  • Clovelly Village – A charming village renowned for its steep, cobbled streets and picturesque views of the North Devon coast.
  • Dartmoor National Park – Step into a world of dramatic landscapes, from craggy granite tors to misty moors, perfect for hiking or a leisurely drive.
  • Salcombe – An idyllic coastal town that serves as a hub for sailing and water sports, complemented by stunning sea views.
  • Tintagel Castle – Immerse yourself in the mystique of Arthurian legend at this cliff-top ruin, which blends history and myth seamlessly.
Photo of Exeter in Devon, England
Exeter is a beautiful stopping point on any short break in Devon. Photo © Rob Farrow (cc-by-sa/2.0)

Towns and Cities In Devon Well Worth Exploring

  • Torquay – A lively town known for its beaches and palm trees.
  • Plymouth – Steeped in maritime history.
  • Exmouth – Offers excellent watersports activities.
  • Barnstaple – Known for its local market and rich history.
  • Totnes – A bohemian town with a focus on sustainability.
  • Ilfracombe – A Victorian-era town with a bustling harbour.

Each of these towns and cities has its unique characteristics that contribute to making Devon a rich and varied destination. Perhaps a little too much to see on short breaks in Devon, but you can choose the areas which interest you most and fit with your schedule.

Last-Minute Tips For Short Breaks in Devon

When planning your short breaks in Devon, consider the season as it can impact your experience significantly.

Summer breaks in Devon are perfect for beach activities, while autumn offers delightful walks through foliage-rich landscapes. Always keep local maps handy and consider making dining reservations in advance to avoid disappointment.

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