As the regional centre of North Devon, Barnstaple boasts an excellent location, being on the banks of the river Taw, close to Exmoor National Park and near the stunning, rugged North Devon coastline.
The centre of Barnstaple offers a wide range of shops from specialist to chain stores - try Green Lane, a charming indoor mall well worth a visit.
During the day, if you are looking for something energetic to do, then cycle or walk along the scenic Tarka Trail which passes through Bideford and Barnstaple.
By night Barnstaple has ample entertainment with many themed restaurants, bars and pubs as well as a recently refurbished theatre, cinema, bowling complex just outside of Barnstaple.
Barnstaple provides an excellent base for exploring North Devon - the towns of Lynton and Lynmouth are all within easy reach, as are the popular beaches at Woollacombe, Croyde Bay and Saunton. Watermouth castle is situated near Ilfracombe and makes a great family day out.
Visit the interesting Butterfly House and gardens at Ashford. Arlington Court near Shirwell boasts some beautiful Victorian gardens, nature trail with ponds, tearooms and even carriage rides! – ring: 01271 850 296 for more information.
The thriving town centre of Barnstaple, which is partly pedestrianised, has many fine buildings and attractive streets as well as a traditional historic pannier market. Take a stroll along the 13th Century ‘Long Bridge’ which stretches across the river and overlooks Queen Anne’s walk.
Close to the bridge is the museum for North Devon with a Tarka the otter room and undersea room.