Places to Explore ~
Here’s an overview of things to do in the local area
There are lots of leaflets in our information room as well as posters promoting local events. Feel free to ask member of our team for advice and ideas. Before your visit you can also look on our Facebook page where we share details of local events.
For even more up to the minute details of additional places to visit with reviews ~ you must visit the local Discovery Blog created by FlipFlops or Wellies
Andrewshayes is surrounded by gently sloping meadowland, nestled in the Blackdown Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. This means there are lovely country views all around us and as you explore the village of Dalwood.
There are many pleasant country walks on footpaths, through lanes and local woods to keep any walkers happy.
For the less energetic a five minute drive will bring you to the centre of Dalwood, a typical Devon village with a pretty Norman church and thatched 15th-century Tuckers Arms pub. The delightful Corry Brook runs through the village joins the Axe and reaches the sea at Seaton.
Outside the village but close to Andrewshayes are beautiful Burrow Farm Gardens, where you can explore the gardens and also relax with a lovely Devon Cream Tea. We also have Dalwood Vineyard in the village that is producing award wining vine. Private tours and tastings can be arranged or even help pick grapes in the autumn.
In less than twenty minutes by car you can be in one of the many well-known seaside resorts; Charmouth, Lyme Regis, Seaton, Beer or Sidmouth. Known to locals as West Bay, you can also be in Broadchurch in 1/2 hour. A mixture of sand and pebbles along our coast provide fun for all the family.
Take a look at our Guide to Local Beaches where you can search for the type of beach that best suits you. If the children would like a go at rock-pooling there’s plenty of choice locally. Have a look at this Guide to Rock Pooling
The Jurassic Coast is famous for dinosaurs so for amazing fossil hunting contact the Heritage Centre at Charmouth or Lyme Regis Tourist Information Centre for guided walks which are well worth doing.
This beautiful World Heritage nominated coastline cannot fail to impress and everyone can walk a short part of the South West Coast Path even if it is just to find the nearest ice cream shop!
Ranging from exciting adventure parks to children’s farms and wildlife centres, East Devon has plenty of fun days out for the family. We created a page for some of the Best Local Attractions such as Crealy Adventure Park or Seaton Tramway.
The choice is endless buts here’s a few local favourites. For animals there’s the local Axe Valley Wildlife Park, Sidmouth Donkey Sanctuary (free) or Wildwood Escot, a little further afield is the Swannery and Children’s Farm at Abbotsbury. For something a bit more educational how about the Fleet Air Arm Museum, the Tank Museum or Dinosaur Museum.
Locally in Beer we have a real family favourite Pecorama, not only an amazing miniature train ride, but plenty for the children and wonderful gardens.
We keep a well stocked information room full of leaflets as well as posters advertising local events.
Food and Drink in Devon
In the Westcountry there is a huge variety of independent food and drink producers and great places to eat and drink. Whether you are after a Michelin Star restaurant or just some great fish and chips or a cream tea we have got it all.
Our most famous local eatery is the River Cottage Canteen (Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall) in Axminster. There are many lovely pubs, cafes and restaurants all round us – to be honest it would almost be unfair to start naming places to eat as part of the fun of being on holiday is to discover them, but do feel free to ask the in reception if you want some help.
We are just 10 minutes drive from Park Farm, the River Cottage HQ, make us an ideal base if you need local accommodation near to River Cottage during courses or for visiting one of their Festivals.
West Country cider making is seeing a real resurgence at the moment and many producers are open for visitors. For a whole day of food you can use us as a base to visit the Exeter Festival of Food and Drink which is held early May or the Axe Vale Show in June which always has a lovely food tent or the Powderham Castle Food Fair in the autumn.
Stately Homes and Gardens Devon
We are blessed with a huge variety of gardens and country houses nearby. From the unique Burrow Farm Gardens on our doorstep to the grandeur of Forde Abbey near Chard, as well as National Trust properties like the lovely Killerton House and Montecute House.
Bicton Park and Gardens has something for all the family; traditional English and formal gardens, a palm house and woodland walks as well as a train ride, indoor and outdoor play areas, perfect for the under 8’s.
Others worth travelling for are Mapperton House near Beaminster, Hestercombe Gardens near Taunton, Abbotsbury Sub Tropical Gardens and Minterene Gardens near Dorchester.
On selected dates nearby Shute Barton is open to the public, a fascinating Tudor property owned by the National Trust.
Walking Devon & Dorset Countryside
We are in an “Area Of Outstanding Natural Beauty” (AONB) in the Blackdown Hills and East Devon, so the picturesque Axe Valley and the impressive local coastline provide no end of opportunities for every level of walker.
Within walking distance of Andrewshayes are Shute Woods, beautiful Burrow Farm Gardens, National Trust Loughwood Chapel and Shute Barton.
There are local buses to Lyme Regis and Seaton for the South West Coastal Path as well as the beautiful East Devon Way. We are just a one hour drive from Dartmoor.
Find some of these local walks and many more locals favourites by taking a look at Clare’s blog Flip Flops or Wellies, where you will find details a range of nearby walks, perfect for exploring, admiring the views and dog walking.
Playing Golf in Devon
East Devon, Dorset and Somerset have some of England’s finest courses. Within half an hour you can reach courses at Axe Cliff (with breathtaking views over the cliffs), Lyme Regis, West Bay, Honiton, Windwhistle (nr Crewkerne), Sidmouth and Padbrook Park at Cullompton, search on www.devongolf.com for more details.
For an experience not to be missed, treat yourself to a day at the famous championship quality course at Woodbury Park near Exeter where you can also enjoy their spa facilities and restaurant.
Fishing & Boat Trips Devon and Dorset
There are plenty of fishing opportunities locally both fly and course fishing. The local tourist information centre in Axminster
keeps up to date details of coarse fishing lakes and open times.
For something different for all the family, how about a mackerel fishing trip. They leave daily in the summer from Lyme Regis, Branscombe or Beer. The picture shows Harry May and his popular boat Marie F that offers regular trips from Lyme Regis.
in Beer you also can hire a small self drive motor boat for an hour at time to explore the coast. For a bigger trip head to Exmouth for one of the many lovely boat trips along the Jurassic Coast or towards Torquay with Stuart Line Cruises. We have leaflets and cards in our information room for all these.
Bird Watching Devon and Dorset
The nearby tidal Axe Estuary and Seaton Marshes (Seaton Wetlands) has fine opportunities for bird watching and wildlife, with superb lookout hides as well as easily accessible public footpaths.
There is also the varied coastline with its cliffs and crags, a great attraction for seabirds. The Undercliff Nature Reserve, which is part of the Lyme Regis to Seaton coastal path is also a fantastic place for nature enthusiasts.
A little further afield is the Dawlish Warren Nature Reserve, an area of grassland, sand dunes, mudflats and centres on a 1½ mile long sandspit beach across the mouth of the Exe Estuary.
Cycling in Devon and Dorset
Whether you’re an energetic cyclist with your own bicycle or just fancy a short trip around the country lanes with a pub lunch en route, you will love the local area around Andrewshayes.
Bring your own bikes on holiday or you can hire bikes from Exeter Quay, Darts Farm, Haldon Hill Forrestry Commission and Bridport Cycles based at Manor Yard, Symondsbury.
The Sustrans National Cycle Route 2 passes nearby so can be easily joined. East Devon has also developed the Buzzard Route, the whole circuit is 80 miles but shorted sections can easily be taken from it.
Shopping in Devon and Dorset
The small market town of Axminster is 3 miles away. The Heritage Centre is a lovely museum detailing the history of the town and its world renowned carpet factory heritage. Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s popular River Cottage Canteen is in the market square as well as a number of coffee shops and restaurants. It has two supermarkets and a good range of independent shops including Complete Meats an award winning butcher.
On the way to Axminster is the popular Millers Farm Shop at Kilmington, a delight to browse for local and French food, it even has it’s own wine cellar and cafe, as well as an independent fish shop and florist on site.
Six miles in the other direction is Honiton, larger and famous locally for its antique shops, traditional Honiton Lace and pottery – both towns have weekly produce markets.
For more extensive shopping, Exeter is a lovely city with a combination of high street stores and cobbled streets with specialist shops. The unique Gandy Street was apparently JK Rowling’s inspiration for Diagon Alley
The historic Quayside at Exeter is a lovely riverside resort with shops, cafes and pubs.
There are free historical guided city tours, underground tunnels to explore, the beautiful Gothic cathedral and the interesting RAM Museum.
Also in Axminster is the well know Axminster Tool Centre – an aladin’s cave for anyone interested in power tools, woodturning and other activities. Again we are well placed to offer accommodation for courses at Axminster Tool Skill Centre
East Devon Excellence
Andrewshayes is part of a select group of local companies that are members of East Devon Excellence. Making up some of the best places to stay, eat and visit in East Devon, it is a great resource if you are looking for more research for your visit to East Devon.