Family Attractions

North Devon is filled with things to do for all the family and finding something fun, cultural or adventurous to do is easy! Whether you’re looking for fun days out in North Devon guaranteed to keep the whole family entertained or a relaxing trip to a historic house, there are plenty of attractions in North Devon to choose from. For top Devon family attractions you can take your pick from a choice of theme parks with exhilarating rides and slides designed to thrill, or get up close and personal with the cutest animals at one of the fun packed farm attractions.North Devon boasts an enviable choice of more exotic  wildlife attractions too, from a zoo and an aquarium to a Dinosaur Park. For eating out in North Devon we have everything from family friendly Devon pubs to award winning fine dining. We list below a few examples of Family Attractions and a link to other websites listing plenty more things to do in North Devon.

COMBE MARTIN WILDLIFE AND DINOSAUR PARK  has recently been taken over by 4 new owners.  Lynne and her sister Dawn and their husbands Darryl and Alan have got great things in store for the park. Their father Robert Butcher bought the park 28years ago when it had been derelict for 10 years and had a vision to create something unique. He built it up to what it is today, adding some incredible features into the park. As the park is built into a natural valley, this is what gives it its unique and beautiful setting. The recent addition of the new Petsaurus Corner which has been newly built has been greatly received by visitors so far this year. They are really putting in a lot of time and effort to make improvements to the park, but most of the work on the enclosures will be done in the winter when the park is closed. They have built new paddocks down by the lions where they now have Alpacas and Shetland Ponies and a new path has been built up to the Wolf enclosure. They have a lot of plans for the future, they have someone working full time at the park building new dinosaurs which they are really excited about, so during the course of the year you will see more and more appear around the park, they are really looking to take the park forward with some great ideas for the future. They are an independent business and rely solely on the income from their customers during the season to see them through the winter when they are closed, this helps to feed their animals and make improvements to the park. Their main aim is to make sure their customers have a great day; this is really enhanced by all the free encounters, talks and shows they put on during the day which gives the customer a chance to get really close to their animals. You will see many changes throughout the year and they hope people will visit them and give them their support in taking the park forward in a positive way. Combe Martin had a very special visitor during their recent ‘Love your Zoo’ celebrations week. More than 50 Zoos took part in the campaign which was launched in 2011 by the British and Irish Zoos Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Its aim was to encourage people to visit their local BIAZA Zoo not only for a fun day out but to learn just how much they do for conservation, education and research. Throughout the week the Combe Martin Wildlife and Dinosaur Park ran fun activities which included a ‘love your zoo’ heart trail and colouring and drawing competitions. Bill Bailey popped in on a Bank Holiday Monday to show his support for the park, a place he has visited often over the years and has even mentioned in his stage show. Bill is an avid supporter of wildlife and actively supports the WSPA (World Society for the Protection of Animals) and the Sumatran Orang-utan Society. Bill said “Zoos are great places to visit for a fun day out, but on a serious note they are also helping safeguard the future of vulnerable species. Without you, the visitor, they would be unable to do this. Support your local BIAZA Zoo and have as much fun as I did on my visit to Combe Martin today!” Combe Martin Wildlife & Dinosaur Park are involved in a number of breeding programmes with endangered species and have actively raised thousands of pounds in the last 12 months for the South East Asian Campaign, the Barn Owl Trust and SANCCOB which is at forefront of saving African Penguins. They are also currently in talks with rescue organisations in Europe to help give a good home to animals that have been confiscated by government authorities or animal protection organisations. Dawn Gilbert Park Director said “We feel it is a modern Zoos responsibility to be ambassadors for wildlife by increasing public understanding of species and their welfare. At the same time we want our visitors to have a great day out so we do our best to combine the two by integrating strong educational messages within the parks entertainment i.e. our shows, encounters, displays and talks. We are grateful that Bill Bailey took the time out of his busy schedule to support us as he is currently on tour, so to do this for us on his only day off for months was amazing! I also want to thank everyone who visited us during Love your Zoo week especially those that participated in our trails and competitions.”  Tel: 01271 882486 EX34 ONG

is the biggest all weather, family day out in North Devon!  From rollercoasters and indoor adventure play to great live shows. If you’re looking for fun days out and things to do in Devon, The Milky Way Adventure Park has it all! Ride the Cosmic Typhoon Devon’s tallest, fastest & longest roller coaster. Have a wild time in North Devon’s biggest indoor adventure play area with assault courses & slides built for adults & children. Kick back & watch their amazing live shows featuring Merlin from Britain’s Got Talent, plus fantastic displays from the North Devon Bird of Prey Centre. At The Milky Way they’ve got attractions to suit all ages, whatever the weather. With over 110,000 sq. ft. of indoor fun & acres of outdoor activities.  There are so many things to do plus ALL the rides are included in the entrance fee! Your adventure awaits… are you ready?   Tel: 01237 431735/255 EX39 5RY

THE BIG SHEEP If you’re looking for a great day out for all the family a visit to The BIG Sheep is a must! The famous attraction and Gold Award Winner for Tourism Excellence in SW England, is now firmly established as one of the UK’s most innovative & exciting family attractions providing wacky and unique entertainment for all the family. The madcap show team will entertain you with hilarious and entertaining shows which include a hysterical introduction to various breeds of sheep from around the world, the world famous sheep racing, horse whispering, sheep shearing, dog and participating duck trials. The BIG Sheep has something to entertain any age group and children and adults can burn off excess energy and play safely on a great selection of slides and imaginative soft play climbing areas, tumble towers, mazes & obstacles in their MASSIVE indoor play area.
There are loads of fun packed outdoor activities too. For the adrenaline thrill seekers there are bookable sessions at the Adventure Centre adjacent to the park for climbing, low ropes, mountain boarding and competitive families can battle it out using state of the art eye-safe laser guns as they navigate their way through tanks, helicopters and hide outs at Battlefield Live Outdoor Combat Zone. Tel: 01237 472366 EX39 5AP

WATERMOUTH CASTLE One of the West Country’s premier Family Tourist Attractions where you can enjoy, a Victorian Castle full of eclectic treasures, nostalgic displays and curios, a theme park including rides and play areas, and beautiful landscaped  gardens. Watermouth Castle was built in 1825 by Arthur Davie Basset for his bride Harriet. It is worth noting that the Basset’s are recorded in the Domesday Book, having come to Britain with William the Conqueror. In this stunning location overlooking the picturesque Watermouth Cove, Watermouth Family Theme Park and Castle offers a unique and magical experience with entertainment for all ages. With a host of attractions there is always something to capture the imagination so come and see for yourselves! They also offer a Special return ticket! You can return again and again for just £2.00 per person per visit throughout the season. Tel: 01271 867474 EX34 9SL

LYNTON & BARNSTAPLE RAILWAY Visit the legendary Lynton & Barnstaple railway at Woody Bay Station. A mile of the original route has been reopened with steam train services. The route offers stunning views of the Bristol Channel. You can alight at Killington Lane & return to Woody Bay. 80 years after its closure in 1935, you can once more board a train of original L&B coaches at England’s highest narrow-gauge railway station – the delightfully named Woody Bay Station – 1,000 feet up on wild Exmoor. Operated almost entirely by volunteers, we are a “non-profit” organisation owned by its Members with the mission to fully restore the legendary Lynton & Barnstaple Railway. Tel: 01598 763487 EX31 4RA

Enjoy a day out in North Devon experiencing wildlife from around the world by visiting Exmoor Zoo! From the creepy crawlies of the Amazon to the wobbly wallaby joeys of Australia there are plenty of hands on activities with their animals for you to take part in. Set in the North Devon countryside the zoo hosts winding paths lined with shrubs and trees providing homes for many of their wild species of birds and invertebrates, bringing you that much closer to nature. Take a look and enjoy the atmosphere of a relaxing stroll around their family run zoo. Take your pick of a mixture of talks, handling and feeding sessions they provide all year round. You could make a friend with an Alpaca by stroking their soft warm fleece, or conquer your fears by handling a spider and snake! Ever wondered what the Exmoor Beast favourite meal is? Find out at their Exmoor beast feed and talk! They have just been awarded both the best small attraction in Devon and the whole of the Southwest – a great achievement. The zoo is not so large so as to prevent you seeing everything in a visit it has some very rare and unusual animals on display – many of which you will not see in other UK zoos! Tel: 01798 763352 EX31 4SG

Here are a few more links to websites listing many attractions in the area and South West.

We hope you enjoy all the attractions you visit during your stay at Boreat Manor.


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