South Molton, Devon

If you happen to be pootling about in North Devon, looking for things to do, you could do worse than to stop off at South Molton, a lot worse in fact because this little market town, a relatively busy one by North Devon standards, hasn’t lost much of its charm at all over the years. The wide main street is paved and pedestrianised, lined with small and independently owned shops, the central square has attractive Georgian buildings either side of it, and twice a week there’s an indoor Pannier Market where you can buy all sorts of locally grown and handcrafted delights from over 70 stalls.

South Molton is one of many towns that prospered from the wool and cloth trade in the 17th century, so a stroll around the town will show you some fine and elegant houses that were once the homes of wealthy merchants. Should the history start to intrigue you head for the town museum, should you begin to feel peckish try The Corn Dolly Tea Shop (small and quaint) or Zest (Mediterranean and tapas).

What else can you do here, other than saunter about the shops and see what’s occurring? Well, you could go to Melchior Chocolates and see how they make their delights, or to Quince Honey Farm just outside the town, where the have over a million bees. You might have a stroll round the picturesque gardens at Castle Hill, or as South Molton is famously The Gateway to Exmoor, you can go and explore the National Park for the day - heather-clad heaths where wild ponies graze, steep wooded hillsides, timeless villages, rushing river valleys, bracing clifftops, scones and cream and jam and tea. Glory, glory be.

All information correct at the time of writing

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