Saunton Golf Course
Cycling on the Tarka Trail
Discover Devon on foot – you’ll find walks for everyone and, with its mild climate, unspoilt beauty, peace and tranquillity, Devon is the perfect place for walkers to explore. Short stroll or epic hike, take your choice of miles of Devon’s exhilarating views, gently rolling countryside, high moorland, river valleys and some of the finest stretches of coastline in Britain – what more could you ask?
The jewel in the crown is the South West Coast Path, Devon’s only National Trail, with 205 miles of matchless coast.
Great South West Walks
The Great South West Walks will take place from 20th – 28th September 2014, with 100 popular circular walks around the South West Coast Path in Dorset, Devon and Cornwall (as well as the Exmoor coast through Somerset). Its aim is to raise vital funds for improvements to the path to enable everyone to continue “loving the South West Coast Path”.
Organised by the South West Coast Path Association, there will be guided sponsored walks of various lengths, to suit all types of walkers. Many will be themed to include wildlife walks, family friendly walks etc. (details on the Coast Path Website)
Southwest coast path
Some of our favourites:
Lynton and Lynmouth area
Head down the Valley of Rocks with its herd of wild goats to the dramatic Heddon’s Mouth and along the cliffs to Woody Bay. There’s a carpark at the swiss-style Hunters Inn, which is a good place to stop for a well-deserved pint.
A beautiful walk through ancient woodland alongside the River Heddon to where it meets the sea on the north Devon coast, between some of England’s highest sea cliffs, framing an amazing view out to sea. Down on the beach you will find a restored 19th-century lime kiln.
Watersmeet is one of Britain’s deepest river gorges, where the lush valleys of the East Lyn and Hoar Oak Water meet. This entire area is a walkers’ paradise, with options to explore inland or take the coastal path along the cliff tops. Watersmeet House is now a great little cafe where you can refuel on an ample cream tea. The river is home to otters, salmon and the occasional brave kayaker. The varied terrain in this area is striking, but it is the wealth of wildlife which is the real treat: red deer, herons, wood warblers and jays all call this beautiful place home.
Exmoor – Simonsbath
This small Exmoor village has an excellent pub, and good car parks – all well signposted. There are numerous well documented walks round here, and they mostly start following the river Barle.
From the car park walk back to the main road and turn right down through the village. At the first road junction turn left down the road, passing the National Park Authorities Sawmill, Just before the bridge, take the gate to the meadow on the left. Follow the riverbank downstream. About half way down the meadow the path moves towards the woodland and, at a choice of gaps through the far wall, joins a track. Turn right down the track and through the gate.
You can follow the river Barle down the valley, and there are several round trip routes you can follow. If you are lucky you may spot a herd of red deer.
Saunton to Croyde and on to Baggy Point
We like to park at Saunton Sands beach and then walk over the hill to Croyde. If you walk up the hill from the car park to Saunton Sands hotel and walk round the edge of the hotel grounds till you come to the coast road, you will find the public footpath to Croyde immediately opposite.
If it’s a nice day we sometimes walk on the coast path from Croyde to Baggy Point – a lovely walk on the South West coast path.
We are about 8 miles from the Tarka Trail. This old railway line is largely paved and provides over 30 miles of easy cycling between Braunton and Meeth. An excellent day out is to hire cycles in Torrington (the hire shop is on the Tarka Trail) and cycle beside the river Torridge to Bideford or Instow. The route passes through the largely unspoilt countryside as it was described by Henry Williamson in his classic novel ‘Tarka the Otter’ first published in 1927.
Cycle hire is available in:
Coast to Coast
We have had guests here who cycled from Coast to Coast. The route starting in Plymouth and heading north is a bit less than 100 miles, and the highest point is 290 metres. It includes 3 traffic free converted railway paths, Drake’s Trail from Plymouth to Tavistock, The Granite Way from Okehampton to Lydford, and the Tarka Trail from Meethe to Braunton. The other on road sections use National Cycle route 27. The off road sections are mostly tarmac.
There are several good golf courses within easy reach of Eastacott Barton.
Highbullen Country Club (about 3 miles away) offers an 18-hole USGA specification golf course, set in richly wooded parkland with breathtaking views across to both Dartmoor and Exmoor.
The 5600 yard, par 68 course is an excellent test for any golfer and is perfect for a round with friends, clients or just a chance to practice your golf skills. Testing but not intimidating, it is little wonder that golf guru and BBC presenter Alex Hay describes Highbullen as “an absolute gem”.
A little further away Saunton Golf Club provides an opportunity to play two Championship courses which have been listed in Golf World & Golf Monthly magazine’s 100 Best Courses in the UK
Highbullen Hotel also have 7 new all weather courts, 4 full size and 3 half size.
The Tarka Tennis Centre in Barnstaple was built in 2003 through local council LTA & Sport England funding. There are 6 indoor courts and 4 outdoor hard courts. Tarka is a pay & play facility so you don’t have to be a member to play here.
Gym and pool
In the gym at Highbullen Hotel/Country Club we have a variety of cardiovascular machines including treadmills, rowing machines, cross trainers and bikes plus a full range of resistance machines, free weights, boxing bag with gloves, functional exercise area with gym balls, medicine balls and stretching mats.