The Blackdown Hills were designated an AONB in 1991 and run along the pretty Somerset and Devon border. They cover an area of 143 square miles and the highest point is Staple Hill at a very accessible 315 metres. With a great selection of holiday cottages in the Blackdown Hills, this is a perfect place to get off the beaten track and it’s a bit of a hidden gem so you will be delighted at what there is on offer in this tranquil and beautiful landscape.
The hills are home to lots of wildlife and have 16 Sites of Special Scientific interest plus steep ridges, high plateaus and valleys. You can also look out for organised activities in the area such as guided walks, fishing or arts and crafts plus much more. It really is perfect for self-catering holidays and many cottages welcome responsible dog owners. The stunning pattern of countryside and farms, villages and places of interest make this a very special place.
Choose your cottage rental in the Blackdown Hills with an enclosed garden, near the coast, more rural and surround yourselves with nature or part of our luxury or heritage collections, the choice really is yours. The whole area is renowned for traditional home cooked food all sourced from local produce, including locally brewed beers, and being on the border of two counties you will be spoilt for choice.
Walkers can enjoy quiet bridleways and byways leading you to distinctive buildings and archaeological remains. Try a hike up to Dumpdon Hill, an Iron Age hill fort with impressive earthworks and now owned by the National Trust (NT), there’s also parking nearby for those who don’t want to stride across scenic Hense Moor. Wellington Monument is the most distinct landmark in the Blackdown Hills and looks over the Vale of Taunton, it was built in the 19th century and is also owned by the NT. There are two airfield heritage centres, Dunkeswell and Upottery and Loughwood Meeting house, a 17th century thatched meeting house, open every day, owned by the NT.
Yarcombe, amidst rolling fields and ancient woodland, is a pretty east Devon working village in the Yarty Valley. The village centre has an historic Norman church and old Inn with monastic roots so definitely worth a visit. Hemyock Castle is a privately owned ancient monument only open 2-5pm on bank holidays between Easter and September, so you’ll feel very privileged to have timed your visit right!