Exmoor - Outdoor Activities and Sports

Exmoor Outdoor Activities in West Somerset and North Devon.

Activity Details Useful Links
ACTIVITIES FOR THE DISABLED The Calvert Trust specialises in outdoor activities for the disabled and have a centre at Wistlandpound near Barnstaple to the West of Exmoor.  MAP www.calvert-trust.org.uk

Easy Access Walking routes page

Cycling for the disabled page 

BEACHES There are sandy beaches at Combe Martin,  Minehead, Woolacombe and Croyde Bay:-


Map of beach locations around Exmoor

NOTE: The tides rise and fall as much as 12metres at certain times so the beaches can vary in size considerably! 

Combe Martin is small but right in town.
Croyde Bay is a good beach which is a mecca for surfers.  There are a number of surfing and surf hire shops. The Little Pink Shop has a great web site with pictures of the surf either end of Croyde Bay updated every morning at 09.00 - see Surfing below.
Minehead has a new, large sandy beach with groynes.  Long seafront with lots of parking, amusements, shops etc. There is a small harbour at the western end.
Woolacombe is at the North end of a 3 mile beach and the section near the town is an EU Blue Flag beach (no dogs in this section). Lifeguards always in attendance. Popular with surfers. Lots of shops, fast food outlets.
Barricane Bay is a great beach just around the North headland at Woolacombe with some interesting rock pools full of sea anenomes but does disappear when the tide comes in.
Putsborough Sands is at the Southern end of Woolacombe beach and is approached by a different route.  There is a car park but no shops. There is a spectacular walk round Baggy Point to Croyde Bay from Putsborough.

Tide times


Rockpooling - Barricane Bay

Devon Beach Guide




Woolacombe's website



With 80 resident species and many more visitors and passage migrants, Exmoor is a great place to watch birds.  eg; The abundant gorse on North Hill (240 hectares of coastal heath and woodland with super views above Minehead) is now home to a small breeding population of Dartford Warbler.  You will also find Stonechats here.  Across the moor you can see many unusual birds including Harriers, Peregrines, Kingfishers, Merlin, Redshanks, Nuthatches, Woodpeckers, Barn Owls and Buzzards. Rare Species page
CANOEING & KAYAKING There are a number of good rivers for kayaking on Exmoor and several reservoirs for canoeing.
Exmoor Adventures provide BCU Courses, Guided White Water trips, Taster Sessions & Canoe and Kayak skills training
CYCLING see cycling page  
FALCONRY There are several 'birds of prey' centres:
Exmoor Falconry & Animal Farm at Allerford, near Porlock:
"An experience of a lifetime to fly your own birds of prey for the day!  Here you will be in a small group of up to four people, in the company of our falconer, for the day discovering how the birds are trained and handled, and with the opportunity of flying your own birds.  You may take a Hawk Walk, A Falconry Experience Half Day or Full Day, or 2-5 day courses.  Vouchers available.  Also Riding for the experienced and Clay-pigeon Shooting."

There is also a Bird of Prey Centre at The Milky Way near Bideford with regular flying shows and hunting expeditions.



FISHING see Fishing page www.hartflyfishing.demon.co.uk
SW Lakes Trust
GOLF The Royal North Devon Golf Club at Northam Burrows near Bideford was founded in 1864 and is the oldest course in England and Wales.  Visitors welcome.
There is an 18 hole par 3 course at Chulmleigh Golf Course which is open all year and testing for beginners and the experienced.
Royal North Devon Golf Club

Chulmleigh GC tel:01769-580519

HASHING The Exmoor Hashers meet every Tuesday evening at 7pm.  
See Exmoor Hash House Harriers

The Barnstaple Hash House Harriers meet weekends for a Hash in the North Devon and Exmoor area.
See http://www.swh3.info/ for a directory of SW Hash clubs.

RIDING see Riding page  
RUNNING The Lyn Lynx Running Club in Lynton organise The Doone Run every year. This cross country event starts and finishes in the Valley of Rocks (to the west of the town). It usually takes place on a Sunday in the middle of September.  
All possible at many places along the coast and at Wimbleball Lake.  South West Lakes Trust run a watersports centre for sailing , windsurfing and canoeing. Wimbleball Sailing Club operate a members club.
Some canoeing takes place on the Exe and the Barle.
There is a (new in 2005) locked marina at Watchet for pleasure craft.
Tide times page
Wimbleball Sailing Club
SWLT website:www.swlakestrust.org.uk
SCENIC TOURS '21 MILE DRIVE' scenic tour - Where Exmoor meets the sea, words and pictures can only tell part of the story, 
Experience the thrill of this scenic tour and discover it's magic as you explore the beauty of Little Switzerland.
Details and Map
SURFING The best surfing is probably at Croyde, Woolacombe or Saunton Sands.  The beaches have a number of surfing shops with hire facilities, training and plenty of camping sites. North Devon Beach Surf Cams
croyde-surf-cam:daily early morning pictures.
Surf report from the BBC
Surfparadise Croyde
WALKING  see Walking page