With half term and the fun and games of the upcoming season, there is plenty going on in East Devon. This is a region that is teeming with natural beauty, rich history and vibrant culture. Here are some of the top things to do when in East Devon.
Visit historic towns and villages
The region is full of charming market towns and quaint villages, all with their own unique charms. Sidmouth is known for its Regency architecture, the iconic beachside view and several beautiful gardens, which remain landscaped even in the autumn and winter months. Nearby, Ottery St Mary has a vibrant farmers’ market and plenty of history to explore, while Seaton has a traditional seaside resort atmosphere. At this time of year, you can avoid the crowds at the beach and enjoy a leisurely stroll with some fish and chips. Elsewhere the town of Honiton, famous for lace making is a great place to get cracking on the Christmas shopping, especially if you’re in the market for some antiques.
Explore the Jurassic Coast
This 95 mile stretch of coastline follows the coast along from Dorset through to East Devon and is one of the biggest draws to this area. As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is a must visit for history enthusiasts, nature lovers, walkers and any one who loves fossil hunting or rock pooling. Depending on where you are along the coastline, you can see the change in the eras and there are lots of opportunities for following coastal walks and immersing yourself in history.
Speaking of history…
East Devon is one of the most historically interesting areas of Devon, not only because of the Jurassic Coast but also because of the individual areas – did you know Queen Victoria spent time living in Sidmouth as a child? You can even now stay in her former home! Her wedding dress was also made in the region, from the famous Honiton lace! That’s not the only history you can find here, Sir Walter Raleigh hailed from Budleigh Salterton and writers including Samuel Coleridge and JRR Tolkien have links to both Sidmouth and Ottery St Mary giving you plenty to explore both via the town’s Blue Plaques and their museums.
East Devon’s natural beauty makes it a great location for anyone who loves being outdoors. The region’s walking festival might be over for another year but that doesn’t mean you can’t still head out and see the season’s change. Around Sidmouth you have places like the Byes and the Civic Arboretum for bracing autumnal walks. Honiton is full of lovely walks like those at Roundball Woods and Seaton Wetlands offer a host of family friendly activities throughout autumn to help you enjoy the changing seasons. The South West Coast Path also passes through the area and of course, you have the famous East Devon Way too.
The summer might be over but there are still some amazing events to look forward to across East Devon. Sidmouth, Budleigh Salterton and others have their incredible Christmas shopping coming up and no one wants to miss the Ottery Tar Barrels! This traditional event forms part of the town’s Bonfire Night celebrations and sees residents carrying flaming barrels through the town in a procession leading to a giant bonfire. It’s one of the biggest dates in the town’s calendar!
So what are you waiting for?! East Devon is a wonderful destination that blends history, tranquillity, shopping and amazing attractions and activities into a memorable experience. Whether you’re here for the Jurassic Coast, want some retail therapy or are just looking for somewhere quiet to escape for an autumnal get away, there’s always something to do here.
Plan your trip to East Devon now!