Lynton and Lynmouth

A Visitor Guide to Lynton and Lynmouth on Exmoor in North Devon

Two villages on the coast, one above the other, Lynton and Lynmouth where known by the Victorians as Little Switzerland.  Lynton is an attractive village with a museum and good range of restaurants, cafes, tea shops and 'art/craft' shops.  There are many hotels and guest houses in Lynton and Lynmouth.  The town hall is very grand and is home to the Visitor Centre as well as films, drama and exhibitions.

600 feet below Lynton is the small harbour of Lynmouth.  The two villages are linked by a famous and ingenius cliff railway which is well worth a ride. 
Two rivers - the East Lyn and the Hoaroak - combine just inland from the harbour at Watersmeet and sweep down a spectacular gorge and through the village to the sea.  Reminders of the disaster in 1952, when the rivers flooded and a torrent of water washed many cottages into the sea with great loss of life, can be seen in the Memorial Hall.  

There are some lovely walks from Lynmouth, notably up the river gorge to Watersmeet where the National Trust have a shop and tea rooms, West along the coast path to the Valley of Rocks with its wonderful scenery and flock of wild goats or round Hollerday Hill overlooking Lynton (see 'History' below). 

Regular events:
Lynton Farmers Market: First Saturday each month. 10.00am Town Hall.

There is a village cinema in Lynton with an interesting program - see website  


Lynton and Lynmouth owe a great deal to one very generous benefactor - Sir George Newnes, the publisher who loved the place and lived at a great mansion called Hollerday House.  The place unfortunately burned to the ground in 1913 in mysterious circumstances. The house was built on Hollerday Hill above Lynton.  The hill is now mainly wooded and there is a nice walk up from behind the Town Hall.  The site of the house can be seen along with the remains of an Iron Age settlement on the hill top.  There are some great views east to Foreland Point and west along the Valley of Rocks.
   The steep gradient between the two villages had always been a deterrent to visitors and hard work for the locals.  In 1887 Newnes and Thomas Hewitt (later Sir Thomas Hewitt K.C.) began a project, using the recently patented invention by local engineer Bob Jones, to lay a 900 foot  twin track up the 1 in 1.75 gradient.  The railway was opened in 1890 and apart from new track in 1908 operates now as it always has.  The total cost of the project was 8,000 and there has never been an accident.  
In the early days of motoring when the road hill was too steep for cars between the two villages the railway transported cars up the gradient for between 7s. 6d. and 10s. 6d. depending on the size of the car!
   A few years later in 1895 Newnes got involved in a project to build a light railway linking Lynton to Barnstaple.  Newnes became chairman of the development company.  The project was plagued with difficulties, not least a cost-overrun of 100% !  However they persevered and the first train ran on 11 May 1898.  They ran four locomotives and sixteen coaches initially and the average speed was about 12 mph.  The route was extremely beautiful and included crossing Chelfham Viaduct - the largest narrow gauge railway viaduct ever built in Britain.  Just a couple of miles to the west of the National Park, this structure was refurbished during 2000 at a total cost in the region of one million pounds.  It is now in running order (but there is no public access to the top). The line struggled financially and it was not until 1913 that the company managed to pay a 0.5% dividend!  
In 1923 The Southern Railway bought the line and lost 60,000 in the next twelve years.  The railway was finally closed on 29 September 1935.  A major project is under way to fully restore the line - see the Lynton and Barnstaple Railway web site
Lynton Lynmouth Hotels B and B
Lynton Lynmouth Holiday Cottages
Public Transport
OS map of Lynton & Lynmouth

Lynmouth Harbour
Lynmouth Harbour
Lynmouth harbour
The picture above Lynmouth at low tide. 
A prominent feature in Lynmouth is the 'Rhenish' tower at the end of the Quay.  Built in the late 1850's by General Rawdon to store salt water to supply his house with sea baths, it was faithfully reconstructed after the 1952 flood disaster.
Foreland Point from Hollerday Hill above Lynton and Lynmouth
Foreland Point from Hollerday Hill above Lynton


Exmoor villages : Lynton Lynmouth

Panorama of Lynton


Accommodation in Lynton and Lynmouth area

Hotels and B&B in Lynton and Lynmouth     click here for Self Catering

Lynton Cottage Hotel Hotel Lynton
Family run Hotel with panoramic sea views over Lynmouth Bay. Fully refurbished. Suites, Four Posters, Ground Floor, Balcony, Twin and Family rooms available. Free Car parking, Free WIFI. Sea view Dining Room. No Pets. "The view from the Balcony was beyond anything I have seen" - C S Lewis 1925
Longmead House Hotel Lynton
A beautifully comfortable 4 star house set on the edge of Lynton, close to the spectacular valley of rocks. 
En-suite facilities, Licensed guest lounge, WiFi internet, LCD freeview TVs, home cooked food, very friendly welcome!
North Walk House Hotel Lynton
A Bespoke AA-4 Star Highly Commended Guest Accommodation on the South West Coastal Path for fine dining and walking. 
Serving the best in local Organic food, the Property has undergone major refurbishment over the past 5 years to give it a unique Boutique style accommodation.  
6 full en-suite letting rooms, most with magnificent sea views & King size iron Beds.
1 Self Catering fully Fitted Studio Apartment. 
Private car park.  Fully licensed
Hillside House B&B Lynmouth
Hillside is a beautiful listed building overlooking the East Lyn River at Lynmouth. Built in 1790 many original features are still in place today. An ideal base for exploring Exmoor and the North Devon Coast. We are open all year (including Christmas and New Year). Well behaved dogs welcome.
Online booking and vacancies available from our website.
Seawood Hotel Lynton
The Seawood Hotel is one of the finest and most impressive historical grade II listed buildings in Lynton. Spectacular panoramic sea views from all rooms set this unique 12 bedroomed hotel in a class of its own. Complete tranquility with attentive service from owners will make this a place you will want to return to. Ideally situated to explore Exmoor with the Cliff Railway at the top of our garden. 
Car parking on site - All rooms ensuite - Fully licensed bar - Comfortable Lounge - Full dining menu - 4-poster bedded rooms - Tea/coffee making facilities - Complimentary Toiletries.
St. Vincent Hotel St. Vincent Hotel and Restaurant Lynton
Welcome to St. Vincent House Guest House. St. Vincent house is one of the most attractive houses in Lynton offering comfortable bed and breakfast accommodation all year round.
Peter and Daphne would be pleased to welcome you to our lovely grade II listed home. Built in the early 19th Century, this Georgian house is full of character and charm where you can spend a relaxing and peaceful break in the heart of the Exmoor National Park.
We pride ourselves on our friendly and helpful service where your comfort and enjoyment are assured. Fully licensed. Free Wifi throughout the building.
The Turret Hotel Lynton
Step back in time and experience old world hospitality at The Turret.  
Built in 1898 for a Baronets son, the charm of our hotel will relax and welcome you.  
Short breaks available.  
B&B from 25.00
Southcliffe Hotel, Lynton Southcliffe Hotel Lynton
Sue and Andy North look forward to welcoming you to the delightful village of Lynton and making your stay at Southcliffe enjoyable and relaxing. Southcliffe offers a pleasant atmosphere, with friendly service and value for money. 
Traditional/Vegetarian/Vegan breakfasts. 
All rooms ensuite. 
Private car park. 
Convenient location. 
Walkers' paradise.

Lynton and Lynmouth Holiday Cottages for Self Catering

N Devon Holiday Cottages N Devon Holiday Cottages   Dean, nr Lynton   
Dean is not second home country, it has a living, breathing soul and the small community welcome you to share their world. Nestled in the stunning Exmoor countryside and just minutes from the rocky, North Devon coastline, these cottages are ideal for families, walkers, cyclists or those just looking for some R&R. Dogs are welcome and there are wonderful walks right from your doorstep but we can also arrange pick up/drop off for more adventurous walkers!
The Hayloft in Oare The Hayloft   Self Catering Holiday Cottage,    Oare
Luxurious en-suite self catering holiday cottage accommodation for up to 4 people set within its own combe in Lorna Doone country at the heart of Exmoor National Park on the Somerset/Devon border.
Kemps Farm is completely private and secluded, yet is only one mile from the most beautiful coastline in England and close to both Lynton and Porlock. 
The Hayloft offers total seclusion from the outside world and if you truly want to get away from the madding crowd then this is the place for you.
Woodside self catering apartment in Barbrook near Lynton and Lynmouth Woodside Apartment  Self catering Holiday Apartment Barbrook, near Lynmouth
Woodside is a spacious, well-appointed apartment for two situated in the village of Barbrook overlooking the West Lyn River. Fully equipped, centrally heated with private patio and car parking. 
All-inclusive rates.  Also short term breaks available during off-peak season. 
Ideally situated for walking/touring Exmoor and the coast.
List. Dogs welcome. Non-smoking indoors.  Tel:01598-753298 email
Voley Farm self catering in Parracombe Voley Farm   Self Catering Holiday Cottage,    Parracombe
Two charming, comfortable cottages set on a secluded, peaceful Exmoor farm. Spacious, well-equipped accommodation with high-beamed ceilings and many period features. Pretty, canopied bedrooms. Central heating and wood-burning stoves. Panoramic views. Excellent walks from your door to moorland and the sea. Beaches and stables a short drive away. Games room. Laundry room. Help feed our friendly Shetland Sheep and rare breed Gloucester Old Spot pigs!

Public Transport for Lynton and Lynmouth

THE BEST bus map linked to timetables is at the Devon CC website here -

300 Minehead/Porlock/Lynton/Lynmouth
309 Barnstaple/Arlington/Blackmoor Gate/Parracombe/Barbrook/Lynton/Lynmouth
310 Barnstaple/Bratton Fleming/Blackmoor Gate/Parracombe/Barbrook/Lynton/Lynmouth

Timetables & all public transport services/route planning can be accessed here: