Watersmeet, Lynmouth, Exmoor, Devon
Watersmeet has to be on your list of places to visit when you're out and about exploring Exmoor National Park. It's where the East Lyn and Hoar Oak Water meet and is one of the most beautiful spots around, at the bottom of a deep gorge amidst ancient woodlands, and all the while, the sound of the waters racing over the rocks; it's a lovely place to be, though for obvious reasons, it does get rather busy in the summer. Have a gentle amble along the riverbank, or go on a bit further - there are over 40 miles of footpaths to explore from Watersmeet, so seasoned hikers can bring their boots and have a jolly good walk. A good one is the circular to Lynton where you can stop for a bite to eat at the cliff top cafe or ride the Victorian Cliff Railway before heading back.
Beside the river is Watersmeet House, a former fishing lodge which has served as a tea room since 1901. It now incorporates an Information Centre and gift shop and is run by the National Trust, so go and have a look round, sit in the garden and enjoy a proper job Devon cream tea. Watersmeet is also a good spot for canoeing on the East Lyn from October to March, providing the water level is high enough, and it's a popular choice for anglers fishing for salmon, sea trout and brown trout in the season.
The tea shop is open from 10.30am to 5.00pm every day from Easter to the end of October, and at weekends and half term in February.
All information is correct at the time of writing.