Dulverton is known as the ‘gateway to Exmoor’, and for good reason. Not only does it offer excellent access to the wild moorland and hidden valleys of the park, it’s also home to Exmoor House, the headquarters of the Exmoor National Park Authority.
But Dulverton is also a lively small town in its own right, a rugged and pretty place with great independent shops, award-winning restaurants and pubs, and tea shops galore. There’s also an annual carnival, folk festival and a great musical tradition in the town’s pubs and restaurants.
What is there to do in and around Dulverton?
Exmoor beckons! This magnificent national park is made for outdoor adventure. Whether it’s mountain biking along rivers and through woodland, road biking across the upland stretches, horse riding across the moorland or walking the South West Coast Path, Exmoor is a place to blow away the cobwebs and reconnect with England’s beautiful countryside and coastline.
A magical way to experience the landscape of the park and get up close – and we’re talking real close – to the wildlife, North Devon Hawk Walks is a practical and hands-on introduction to falconry. You’ll spend four hours in a stunning little valley near Withypool handling, feeding and flying hawks. Unforgettable.
If you fancy seeing the best of Exmoor but in comfort, why not try a Red Stag Safari? You’ll be taken up on to the moor in a Land Rover Discovery 3. Your guide is an Exmoor resident who will point out the landmarks, explain the geology and farming traditions, and regale you with tales of local customs and the legend of Lorna Doone. If you’re lucky, you might even spot a majestic red stag!
Where are the best places to eat and drink in Dulverton?
Dulverton and its neighbouring villages have a great selection of eateries – from cosy country pubs to eccentric restaurants in town.
With its eclectic décor – think antlers on the wall, mismatched chandeliers and furniture, and bookshelves crammed with cookery books – the Exmoor Beastro is a quirky and informal eaterie which has built a great reputation for its unstuffy attitude to delicious food. Highlights include pork ribs (with meat that falls off the bone) in a sweet and sticky sauce, and beef kefte cooked on the outside courtyard wood-fired oven! Make room for pud – ‘dreamy brownies’ and hazelnut meringues ‘the size of Cornish pasties’, according to one very happy Tripadvisor reviewer!
Tucked away in the Barle Valley a short walk from the wonderful clapper bridge at Tarr Steps, the 16th-century Tarr Farm Inn is situated in a magical spot surrounded by woodland. The low-beamed main bar is the perfect spot to sup Exmoor Ale and Mayner's cider while the menu features locally shot pan-roasted partridge or rabbit casserole, perfectly accompanied by the extensive list of French and New World wines. On a sunny day, the views in the beer garden are unbeatable. A word of warning to those who need to stay connected: there’s no mobile signal – not even a whisper!