Things To Do
Ilfracombe has one of the most picturesque harbours in the whole South West, surrounded by pastel coloured shops and restaurants, the quaint St Nicholas Chapel perched on Lantern Hill and the ‘sleeping elephant’ of Hillsborough Nature Reserve and with Damien Hirst’s statue Verity standing guard at the entrance, it really is a unique place to visit.
Explore the many art and craft galleries, quirky shops and tea rooms. Discover beautiful parks and gardens, visit the Aquarium, Ilfracombe Museum and the famous Victorian bathing pools at the Tunnels Beaches which have been voted third best rock-pooling beach in the country.
Take a boat trip up the coast and look out for seals and dolphins. Try deep-sea fishing from one of the many boats in Ilfracombe Harbour or enjoy a day-trip to Lundy Island, a completely unspoilt nature reserve off the North Devon coast. For the more adventurous there is surfing, golf, horse riding, quad biking and clay pigeon shooting, plus numerous attractions for all the family.
Always plenty going on with festivals and events throughout the season to enjoy like the May Day celebrations and beer festivals, Victorian Week, All Things Morris, South West Birdman Competition and Sea Ilfracombe to name but a few. Or why not take in one of the many shows at the Landmark Theatre or go to the cinema. Relax in Runnymede Gardens and listen to musical performances in the band stand throughout the summer months.
Just 10 minutes’ drive by car or bus, experience the surfer’s paradise of Woolacombe, Croyde and Saunton with their miles of golden sand and dunes. To the East discover the delightful moorland reaches of Exmoor with its rolling hills and quaint villages including Lynton and Lynmouth with its cliff top railway and to the west the delights of Clovelly, Appledore and Westwood Ho!
Ilfracombe is the perfect base for walkers as it is situated directly on the rugged South West Coastal Path and has spectacular scenery in either direction. Why not join some of the guided walks in the North Devon and Exmoor Walking Festival in early May.
Ilfracombe is the start of the Coast to Coast cycle route to Plymouth and we have many guests staying who do this challenge. Usually done over 2 to 3 days we are ideally situated for the start or end of the route. We can also give advice on how to get back from Plymouth or arrange transport with your bikes.