We love a day out whether it’s just a weekend day popping out somewhere, or a day out while on holiday. I’m reliving my childhood visiting around the UK, near home and further away, and love sharing it with N. So if you’re looking for days out in Devon, you’re in the right place.
This series of days out posts are based on round ups of places we’ve loved on our travels. Hopefully it’ll make them easier for you to find, especially if you’re looking for recommendations for places to visit. I’ll also be including recommendations from other bloggers, because if you’re looking for guidance on where to go you want to hear from local people as well as visitors to an area.
Museums, culture and history
House of Marbles, near Newton Abbot
For children of all ages, a free marble museum. Lots of mechanical marble runs, displays of marbles and local historical building displays. A great outdoor picnic and play area, nice café (with huge cream teas), plus a great shop with pick and mix marbles. Can get busy with coaches, but go early to get the place to yourself.
Buckland Abbey – Former monastery and Francis Drake’s home
Golden Hind, Brixham – Explore the full size replica of the historic ship with a bargain family priced ticket.
Greenway, nr Paignton – The home of Agatha Christie. Check opening hours before going
Arlington Court – a classic National Trust location, with plenty of estate to walk, adventure playgrounds (quite a walk from the main area), plus the national carriage museum is included on site.
Killerton House – house with dressing up for the children, and huge estate to walk the trails
Castle Drogo – a modern castle with nice gardens and a croquet lawn with garden games to play
Wildlife and nature
Paignton Zoo – good sized zoo covering most of the animals you’d want to see. Train ride costs extra. Take your own picnic or buy hot food (the choice was limited and delivery of our panini was not great.
Miniature Pony Centre, Moretonhampstead – children’s farm focusing on ponies. Perfect for animal lovers. Be prepared for a hilly walk
The Big Sheep – not just about sheep, there’s play equipment, displays, laser tag and more.
Axe Valley wildlife park – great wildlife park at a reasonable price. During holidays, they also have animal encounter sessions
Sidmouth Donkey Sanctuary – around 500 donkeys looked after here, enjoy the maze and watch out for seasonal events.
Plymouth National Marine Aquarium – UK’s largest aquarium
Combe Martin Wildlife and Dinosaur Park – animatronic dinosaurs, soft play and animals. It’s hilly, some areas not pushchair friendly.
Wildwood Escot – wildlife park, with maze, adventure playground and an anglo-saxon village. Set in woodland, can get muddy, and a carrier might be easier than a buggy.
Goodrington and Paignton – Paignton is nice to walk along the beach front, plus there’s a pier as well as the long beach good for families. Goodrington is a bit further along, smaller, and more secluded down a deadend. Small car park immediately in front, but lovely beach with a café and small beach goods shop. Or park nearer the water park and walk. Watch the train go past above the beach.
Woolacombe – beach that stretches for miles. Great for families to swim or rock pool, and move further along the coast for great surfing. Watch out because the tide comes in fast.
Westward Ho – explore the wrecks at low tide
Babbacombe – Check out the Bygones museum for old shops and goods (not for children who don’t like mannequins, like mine!), or Babbacombe model village which is great for all ages.
Watermouth Castle – the quirkiest, manmade built castle museum and children’s theme park. Most of the rides are suitable for primary age/preschool children, check out the old fashioned arcade, enjoy the gnome village and the ball shooting barn. There’s also a Vegas style light water fountain display regularly through the day. It’s eccentric, but a great day out especially for age 4-8ish year olds.
Ilfracombe – fishing town, take the landtrain round the town, check out the lifeboat museum, and enjoy fish and chips on the small harbour beach.
Crealy Park – child friendly adventure theme park
Milky Way Adventure Park nr Bideford – as well as the rides and bouncing pillows, find out about local farming history or enjoy soft play. Good for rainy as well as sunny days.
Woody Bay Station – good for an hour or so for railway fans
Seaton Tramway – short tramway ride, through nature reserves to the coast
Diggerland – digger based activity park. Dependent on height, kids and adults can drive and experience rides on different types of diggers.
Exeter – explore the historic university city, from cathedral to underground passages and craft workshops.
The Pig on the Hill, Westward Ho
The Wood Oven, Boscombe
Where to stay
Andrews Hayes Holiday Park – with holiday houses, glamping pods, playground facilities and pool
Crealy Meadows – glamping
Kerrington House B&B, Axminster
Hope and Anchor, Hope Cove – good food, and beautiful area to enjoy the views
Where do you like to visit in Devon?
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