15 Best Walks in Dartmoor National Park (Hikes & Nice Walks)

15 Best Walks in Dartmoor National Park (Hikes & Nice Walks)

By will

Welcome to Dartmoor National Park, the perfect place for a refreshing and liberating outdoor experience!

Nestled within the southern part of Devon, this vast expanse of wild moorland is an ideal spot for taking in the fresh air and reconnecting with nature.

Whether you’re looking for an exhilarating hike or a leisurely stroll, Dartmoor has something to offer everyone.

From rocky tors to verdant valleys, here are 15 of the best walks in Dartmoor National Park that will have you feeling free as a bird!

1. Teign Gorge

Teign Gorge
Photo by Colin Smith

The Teign Gorge is a stunning area located in the heart of Dartmoor National Park.

It’s a great spot for hikers or those looking for a pleasant stroll.

The area is strewn with remarkable geological formations, giving the landscape an otherworldly feel.

The River Teign cuts through the gorge, and its banks are lined with lush green foliage.

The path winds along the river, providing spectacular views at every turn.

For those seeking more of adventure, there are plenty of hidden gems to discover.

From ancient ruins to hidden waterfalls, every journey here is filled with surprises.

The sheer beauty of the gorge means that it’s one of the most popular places to visit in Dartmoor National Park.

On sunny days, visitors flock here from miles around to take in its majestic beauty and vibrant atmosphere.

Whether you’re an experienced hiker or just looking for a leisurely stroll, this place has something for everyone.

So come explore Teign Gorge and experience why it’s one of Dartmoor’s best-loved attractions!

2. Wistmans’ Wood

Wistman's Wood, Dartmoor
Photo by Alan Hunt

Nestled in the northwestern corner of Dartmoor National Park, Wistmans’ Wood is a treasured gem, full of ancient trees and rugged, untouched beauty.

It’s one of the oldest surviving oak woodlands in Britain and one of the most picturesque walks on the moor.

On your journey, you’ll come across lichen-covered rocks, dramatic boulders, and stunning waterfalls.

The winding path takes you past eroded tors and deep river valleys that offer spectacular views out over Devon.

Whether you’re looking for a gentle stroll or an adventurous hike, Wistmans’ Wood has something for everyone.

The atmosphere here is magical – it’s like stepping back in time as you wander amongst gnarled trees and craggy cliffs.

For those seeking peace and quiet, this is the perfect spot to pause and take in the breathtaking scenery.

From here you can experience Dartmoor’s wild beauty up close and personal – a truly unforgettable experience.

3. Easdon Tor

Easdon Tor
Photo by Rude Health

Easdon Tor is a great place to start exploring the stunning Dartmoor National Park.

Located in the north of the park, this summit offers incredible views over the moorland and countryside below.

As you ascend, you’ll be treated to an array of wildflowers, heathers, and grasses that carpet the slopes of the tor.

Atop Easdon Tor, you can bask in the beauty of nature.

With panoramic vistas stretching far into the horizon, your eyes will take in impressive views across Devon’s rolling hills and woodlands.

On clear days, distant towns and villages can also be seen from here – a perfect reward for those who make it to the top!

Take your time here; sit back on one of the many large rocks that dot this high point, and let yourself breathe in nature’s majestic beauty.

4. Fingle Gorge

Fingle Gorge is a stunning place to explore in Dartmoor National Park, located in Devon, England.

Read  15 Best Walks In Hereford (Hikes & Nice Walks)

Whether you’re looking for a scenic walk or an invigorating hike, this destination offers something for everyone.

The gorge winds its way through lush forests and dramatic granite cliffs, providing breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape.

The Fingle Gorge circular walk is ideal for those seeking a leisurely stroll in nature.

It’s just over five miles long and takes around three hours to complete.

You’ll be surrounded by beautiful scenery as you meander along the riverside paths, with plenty of opportunities to spot local wildlife such as otters and kingfishers.

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can extend your journey by exploring the neighboring woodlands and moorland hillsides for even more spectacular views.

At the end of your journey, take some time to relax at one of the many quaint pubs and cafes that line the banks of Fingle Gorge – it’s the perfect way to round off your day!

5. Lydford Gorge

Lydford Gorge is an unforgettable place to explore the rugged beauty of Dartmoor National Park.

This magnificent gorge is a must-see on any walker’s itinerary.

The steep sides of this naturally formed ravine are filled with high cliffs, cascading waterfalls, and lush green foliage.

You’ll be captivated by the stunning views from the top of the gorge, not to mention the tranquil atmosphere that awaits you at the bottom.

The most popular route for exploring Lydford Gorge is along its 2-mile circuit path.

It’s a relatively easy hike that takes approximately two hours to complete.

Along your journey, you’ll get up close with many wonders like Devil’s Cauldron, a deep pool created by a powerful whirlpool.

You’ll also come across White Lady Waterfall – so named because of its beautiful white cascade – and a natural rock bridge that provides perfect photo opportunities!

At every turn, there’s something new and exciting to discover in this spectacular ravine.

A visit to Lydford Gorge will have you feeling like you’ve been transported into another world; it truly is one of Dartmoor National Park’s greatest treasures.

With such dramatic scenery and fascinating geological features, it’s no surprise that this destination has become such an iconic spot for walkers and nature lovers alike!

6. Burrator

The next stop on our journey is the beautiful Burrator Reservoir and its surrounding area.

Nestled in the heart of Dartmoor National Park, this tranquil spot offers breathtaking views and a wide variety of activities.

From gentle strolls to more challenging hikes, this is an ideal spot for those looking to get out of the city and enjoy some fresh air.

Take a leisurely walk along the reservoir’s shoreline, stopping often to admire the stunning scenery or take a dip in one of the many crystal-clear pools.

If you’re feeling adventurous, head up onto Burrator’s moorland plateau and explore its rolling hills, valleys, and ancient woodlands.

With plenty of trails for all levels of fitness, there are plenty of opportunities for exploration here too.

So why not take a break from your everyday life and enjoy some time reconnecting with nature?

7. Fishermans Path

Fisherman’s Path is one of the finest walks in Dartmoor National Park.

This picturesque three-mile route takes you through beautiful woodland, with views of the surrounding hills and moors.

As you meander along, you’ll discover a variety of wildlife, including birds and butterflies.

The path also offers stunning views of the River Dart and its tributaries.

The trail follows an ancient pathway that was used by fishermen to access the river hundreds of years ago.

Along the way, you can explore abandoned buildings from the past, as well as enjoy a picnic or take a dip in one of the many secluded spots along the banks of the river.

The Fishermans Path is an ideal way to experience all that Dartmoor has to offer – from nature’s beauty to its rich history.

So why not grab your walking boots and head out onto this magical route? You won’t regret it!

8. Castle Drogo And Cod Wood Circular

Next on our list of best walks in Dartmoor National Park are the Castle Drogo and Cod Wood Circular.

This is a great hike for those looking to explore the rugged beauty of this ancient landscape.

Starting at Fingle Bridge, the trail winds along the River Teign, through meadows and pastures before climbing up to Castle Drogo.

The castle’s grandeur, perched atop a granite crag overlooking the Teign Valley, is truly stunning.

Read  15 Best Walks in East Devon (Hikes & Nice Walks)

From here, hikers can take in spectacular views of Dartmoor’s rolling hills and distant tors all around them.

The trail continues through Cod Wood, a dense coniferous forest filled with lush vegetation – perfect for wildlife spotting – before descending back down towards Fingle Bridge.

Along the way, hikers will pass numerous riverside waterfalls, ancient forests, and moorland streams surrounded by wildflowers.

With its varied terrain and panoramic vistas, this circular walk offers something for everyone who loves nature and outdoor exploration!

9. Meldon Reservoir And Black Tor

Meldon Reservoir and Black Tor offer some of the best walks in Dartmoor National Park.

Located just south of Okehampton, this route takes you to a stunning reservoir surrounded by dramatic moorland, with the imposing Black Tor standing proudly in the background.

The walk is moderate in difficulty and can be completed in around 4 hours – perfect for an afternoon stroll or an all-day adventure!

The journey starts at Meldon Quarry car park before heading up a long track towards the reservoir.

Here, you’ll find expansive views across the surrounding landscape.

As you make your way around the shore, keep an eye out for wildlife such as deer, buzzards, and other birds of prey.

After taking in the views, it’s time to head up to Black Tor.

This steep climb leads to a rocky summit with breathtaking panoramic views across Dartmoor National Park – an unforgettable experience!

On this walk, you’ll feel truly liberated as you explore lush meadows and ancient woodlands; take in spectacular vistas from high-up vantage points; and discover hidden waterfalls tucked away among rugged granite hillsides.

It’s no wonder that this route has become one of Dartmoor’s most popular walks – so treat yourself to some freedom and explore this beautiful area today!

10. Combestone Stepping Stone Hike

The Combestone Stepping Stone Hike offers a unique experience that cannot be found anywhere else in Dartmoor.

This spectacular walk takes you through some of the most beautiful scenery in the national park, with breathtaking views of rolling hills and tors stretching away into the distance.

Along the way, hikers can cross rivers and streams by stepping stones, as well as take in some of Dartmoor’s iconic landmarks.

This route is perfect for those who want to explore more of the park’s wild beauty and gain a better understanding of its history.

With its varied terrain and abundance of wildlife, this hike is guaranteed to be an unforgettable experience.

11. Dewerstone To Ivybridge On The Dartmoor Way

The Dewerstone to Ivybridge walk on the Dartmoor Way is an enjoyable stroll through the wilds of this unique English landscape.

Here you can truly feel at one with nature, as you traverse a variety of terrain, from lush meadows and wooded valleys to rugged granite outcrops.

The views are spectacular, taking in some of Dartmoor’s most iconic features, such as Haytor Rocks and the River Meavy.

As you make your way along the route, there are plenty of stops to take in the sights and sounds of Dartmoor.

Take advantage of the numerous benches lined up along the path and rest awhile; enjoy a picnic or just take in the views.

You can even take a dip in some of Dartmoor’s many crystal-clear streams if you’re feeling brave!

Whatever you do, be sure to soak up every moment – it’ll stay with you long after your day trip is over.

12. Bowerman’s Nose And Lustleigh Cleave

Bowerman’s Nose and Lustleigh Cleave is a great walk for anyone seeking adventure in Dartmoor National Park.

This stunning route takes you past the bizarrely shaped rock formation known as Bowerman’s Nose, as well as the beautiful woodland valleys of Lustleigh Cleave.

As you take in the breathtaking views of the rugged landscape, you’ll be surrounded by heather-clad hills, deep river gorges, and wild moorland.

The path to Bowerman’s Nose is steep and can be quite challenging at times, but with its magical atmosphere and stunning scenery, it makes for a truly memorable experience.

Once there, you can climb up to the top of the formation and enjoy unparalleled views across Dartmoor National Park.

After taking in this unique natural feature, head down into Lustleigh Cleave where you will find lush flora and fauna, ancient oak trees, and tranquil streams – perfect for a peaceful afternoon stroll.

This wonderful walk offers a fantastic opportunity to explore some of Dartmoor National Park’s finest landscapes.

Read  15 Best Walks In Shrewsbury (Hikes & Nice Walks)

From the mysterious beauty of Bowerman’s Nose to the tranquil peace of Lustleigh Cleave, it is sure to leave you with long-lasting memories that will stay with you long after your journey ends.

13. Gutter Tor

Next up on our adventure is Gutter Tor, an awe-inspiring natural wonder of Dartmoor National Park.

From Bowerman’s Nose, we’ll take a short drive to the secluded location of Gutter Tor.

This destination is perfect for those who love a good hike and want to be surrounded by untouched beauty.

As you approach Gutter Tor, the first thing that will strike you is the sheer size and beauty of this granite rock formation.

It stands tall against the sky, providing a spectacular backdrop for your journey.

The views around it are stunning; with rolling hills and lush valleys as far as the eye can see.

You can walk around its base or choose to climb higher and explore its many nooks and crannies.

Whatever you decide to do here, make sure you have your camera ready – it’s a photographer’s paradise!

Take some time to admire the beauty of nature in all its glory before heading off on your next adventure!

14. Hound Tor

Hound Tor is a dramatic granite tor located in Dartmoor National Park.

It’s an ideal spot for a hike, offering sweeping views of the surrounding countryside as well as a rugged landscape to explore.

Established pathways lead to the top of the tor, with one following an old packhorse route that was used to transport goods from the nearby villages.

The view from the summit of Hound Tor is breathtaking, with rolling hills and lush green valleys stretching out into the horizon.

The wild Dartmoor ponies can often be spotted grazing in these valleys and it’s not uncommon to see buzzards soaring above the craggy rocks.

The area also has plenty of interesting historical sites and ancient stone circles which adds an extra layer of interest to your walk.

All this makes Hound Tor an excellent destination for any nature lover looking to explore Dartmoor’s beauty and rich history.

15. High Willhays

Next up on our tour of the best walks in Dartmoor National Park is High Willhays.

Located on the highest point of the moor, it’s a must-see for anyone venturing into this wild landscape.

From here, you get stunning views across Dartmoor and beyond – so don’t forget your camera!

High Willhays is easily accessible from Princetown, making it an ideal spot for a day trip or a longer hike.

The summit itself is marked by an ancient Bronze Age settlement – but don’t let that put you off – it’s still a great place to take in the sights and sounds of Dartmoor National Park.

On clear days, you can spot other landmarks such as Hameldown Tor and even Exeter Cathedral in the distance.

As well as being a great spot to soak up some panoramic views, High Willhays also offers plenty of opportunities for nature lovers.

There are plenty of trails that meander around the area, leading through heathland, woodland, and even mires!

It’s a great way to explore this rugged region and maybe even catch a glimpse of Dartmoor’s iconic ponies along the way.

Best Walks in Dartmoor National Park – Final Thoughts

To wrap up, I must say that Dartmoor National Park is a paradise for hikers and nature lovers.

The 15 walks I have listed here are just the tip of the iceberg; there are so many more amazing routes to explore all over this beautiful area.

From Fingle Gorge to High Willhays, you’re sure to find something that appeals to your sense of adventure.

The scenery in Dartmoor National Park is breathtaking.

Whether you’re exploring Wistmans’ Wood or Lydford Gorge, you’ll be surrounded by lush green hillsides and rolling moorland.

I can guarantee that each walk will provide a unique experience, with plenty of opportunities to spot wildlife and take in some spectacular views.

If you’re looking for an outdoor activity that combines exercise and exploration, then look no further than Dartmoor National Park.

With its vast array of trails and routes, it’s easy to see why this stunning park is such a popular destination for hikers from all over the world.

So grab your walking boots and get ready for an unforgettable day out!

FAQs

What are some easy walks in Dartmoor National Park?

Some easy walks in Dartmoor National Park are Bellever Forest, Carving a Trail, and Okehampton Town Trail.

What are the best circular walks in Dartmoor National Park?

Some of the best circular walks in Dartmoor National Park are Burrator Arboretum and Nature Reserve, Potter’s Walk, and Pork Hill Circular.

What are some good family walks in Dartmoor National Park?

Some good family walks in Dartmoor National Park are Hembury Woods, Haytor, and Hound Tor.

You may also like:

About the author

Will is an avid hillwalker and traveler. You may find him surfing in Cornwall or hiking in the Yorkshire Dales.