Exploring South Devon and West Dorset
Sidmouth makes an excellent base for exploring this part of the West Country. Within half an hour’s drive you can be in Dorset, exploring the Jurassic coast; discovering pretty thatched villages in the heart of the Devon countryside or soaking up the culture in the cathedral city of Exeter.
Or let someone else do the driving for a change and take advantage of the extensive local bus network which links Sidmouth to many of the towns and villages you’re likely to want to visit.
Here is a selection of some of the attractions that are within half an hour of Chandler’s holiday cottage.
Lyme Regis and the Jurassic Coast
Famous for it’s fossil finds and as the location for the movie of ‘The French Lieutenant’s Woman’, Lyme Regis is a lively seaside resort on the Dorset Devon border with plenty of cafes, restaurants and unique local shops as well as family friendly beaches.
Beer village, model railway and caves
The charming Devon fishing village of Beer has local pubs, cafes and galleries and is also home to the Pecorama model railway centre and gardens as well as the 2,000 year old quarry caves.
Seaton Bay, the Axe Valley and tramway
At the mouth of the river Axe lies the sweeping pebble beach of Seaton Bay. The Axe estuary is known for it’s rich and varied bird life which can be spotted from the Seaton wetlands and the riverside tram line.
The cathedral city of Exeter
Just 30 minutes drive from Sidmouth is East Devon’s main city with a cosmopolitan shopping centre, beautiful medieval buildings, a Gothic cathedral, historic quayside, museums and theatres.
Budleigh Salterton village and beach
Distinctive red cliffs flank the mouth of the River Otter and beyond the clean pebble beach lies the village of Budleigh Salterton with its cafes, pubs, independent shops and galleries.
Otterton village and working water mill
Otterton is a traditional Devon village with thatched cottages and a working water mill that is also a centre for local arts and crafts.
A La Ronde
This fascinating 16 sided house now belongs to the National Trust so visitors can enjoy its Georgian owners extensive collections of grand tour mementoes as well as the views from the lawns across the Exe estuary.
Escot gardens, maze and woodland adventure
Escot is a place to celebrate the outdoors with woodland trails, a fiendish maze, rare red squirrels and playful otters (and a play barn in case of the odd rain shower).
Bicton Park botanical gardens
A mixture of formal gardens, open parklands and an arboretum as well as it’s own steam railway to help visitors get around.