River Dart Walks
The River Dart Country Park is set in 90 acres, with lakes, parkland, woodland trails and a lovely waterside path along the River Dart. Other attractions in the park include the impressive Holne Park House with delightful grounds and the River Dart Adventures play area where children can clamber over space nets and swing through trees on jungle ropes! There is also an excellent cafe and restaurant for refreshments. See the link below for further information on the park and prices for entry. This free route takes you along the public footpath to the north of the park, starting at Holne Bridge.
The park is located in the Dartmoor National Park, just north of Buckfastleigh and the adjacent Hembury Woods. Here you can enjoy some nice shady woodland trails and a climb to Hembury Castle Iron Age Hillfort.
Just to the south is Buckfast Abbey where there's a series of well laid paths through the lovely gardens surrounding the abbey.
The Dartmoor Way long distance trail also passes just to the west of the abbey. You can pick up the waymarked path in Buckfastleigh to explore the Dartmoor National Park. Following it west will take you to the pretty Venford Reservoir which has a nice trail around the water.
Please click here for more information
River Dart Country Park Ordnance Survey Map - view and print off detailed OS map
River Dart Country Park Open Street Map - view and print off detailed map
River Dart Country Park OS Map - Mobile GPS OS Map with Location tracking
River Dart Country Park Open Street Map - Mobile GPS Map with Location tracking
Further Information and Other Local Ideas
There's lots of other nice walks along the river in Dartmoor to try. You could try the long distance Dart Valley Trail which runs from Totnes to Dartmouth.
The Ridge and Valley Walk also takes you through the river valley. This trail runs from Eggesford Barton to Witheridge.
The South Devon Railway is another fine way of viewing the river. The splendid heritage railway can be picked up in Totnes and runs for about 6 miles with nice views over the river valley. It was initially known as the Dart Valley Railway and stretches from Totnes (Riverside) to Buckfastleigh. For most of its route, the line runs to the east or north of the River Dart. This means that the river views are best seen to the left of the train when facing Buckfastleigh and to the right of the train when facing Totnes. For steam train enthusiasts the rolling stock preserved on the line include many examples of steam locomotives typical of the Great Western Railway. These include GWR 1400 Class number 1420. There are also other types of steam locomotives and a number of diesel locomotives.
Pictured above the South Devon Railway at Buckfastleigh. On the right former Great Western Railway locomotive No. 5786 and train awaiting departure for Totnes in an idyllic rural setting on a warm Sunday afternoon. It's a fine way to relax and enjoy the beautiful scenery of the area.