Hotels of the week: Devon

Devon is one of my favourite places in the UK, and in my opinion makes an excellent honeymoon destination throughout the year, with plenty to offer – from the stark, wild beauty of Dartmoor, to charming old seaside resorts and beautiful little towns and villages crammed full of interesting pubs, tea rooms and thatched cottages.

The Globe Hotel, Topsham

I love Topsham – due in small part at least to the infamous “Topsham Ten” pub crawl of my university days – it’s a really charming small town right on the estuary, full of little old buildings, cobbled streets, pubs (of course) and great views across the Exe. It’s a good base from which to explore the county – with both Dartmoor and the coast just a short drive away, plus Exeter is nearby if you fancy a bit of shopping. The best reason for a stay here is to visit what is in my opinion, the best pub in the world – the Bridge Inn. Oh, and if you like your food, then be sure to stock up at nearby Darts Farm – though you’ll find it hard to drag yourself away from all the treats. The Globe Hotel is the town’s only hotel, right in the heart of town, in a lovely old coaching inn. It’s a perfect position to soak up the quiet charms of Topsham, and the hotel’s bar is a great place to sample some of the many local beers.

The rooms have an old-fashioned charm – my favourite is definitely the one with the four poster bed (above) and the cute little seating area by the window, though they all have nice period furnishings that help reflect the age of the property. The hotel has a real community feel – events are often held here, from skittles to food festivals, and there’s a weekly folk club on Sundays.

Rates from £93 a night.

Combe House Hotel, near Bridgwater

Situated near the north Devon Coast in the beautiful Quantock Hills, Combe House Hotel makes for a wonderful retreat. I love the sumptuousness of the rooms, each of which has been individually decorated and offering a contemporary take on traditional style. There’s an old fashioned but unstuffy charm about the hotel, and with four acres of gardens you’ll probably find the surroundings are enough for you to truly relax.

The hotel’s restaurant focusses on local produce to create its delicious food, and as much of the fruit and vegetables used as possible come from the on-site kitchen garden. You can treat yourselves to a massage, facial and other beauty treatments in the new health and beauty centre – prices are surprisingly reasonable, with massages starting from £30, or you can just make use of the hot tub. Within the local area you’ll find loads to do – from walking and horse-riding in the Quantock Hills to exploring Exmoor and the beautiful coast.

Rates from £165 per night.

Hotel Endsleigh, near Dartmoor

Situated in the glorious countryside near Tavistock, Hotel Endsleigh is one of those quintessentially English houses, beautifully converted into a luxury hotel. With just sixteen rooms, the hotel remains intimate and homely, and each room has been individually decorated to reflect the building’s history, whilst retaining a distinctly modern touch.

The hotel has an excellent restaurant on site, but it’s an easy drive if you want to dine (or drink) outside of the hotel. The best thing here has to be the location – Dartmoor is a short drive away, there’s lots of National Trust properties nearby to explore, and Tavistock is definitely worthy of a little time. Chances are though, you’ll be happy enough holing up in your beautiful room, or exploring the hotel’s extensive and very pretty gardens.

Rates from £200 a night

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