Unique Devon Things to Do
Are you planning a trip to Devon and looking for unique experiences? Look no further! This post covers some of the unusual things to do in Devon.
Devon is renowned for scenic coastal towns, rolling countryside, and temperate climate that draws crowds year-round.
But beyond its postcard-worthy beaches and cream teas, there are several hidden gems for those who veer off the beaten tourist path.
From ghost walks to gin tasting, and shipwreck snorkelling to underground caverns, Devon has plenty of unusual things to do.
So let’s jump into this list of 23 unusually quirky attractions.
Unusual Things to Do in Devon
1. Travel to Burgh Island on a Sea Tractor
Hop on the unique sea tractor transport – only accessible at low tide – to the beautiful Burgh Island.
Hear interesting commentary on this ingenious vehicle that has ferried passengers across sandy shores to the iconic island hotel, that inspired Agatha Christie, since 1969.
2. Visit the Magical Wistman’s Wood
Take a magical walk through Wistman’s Wood to see hundreds of short, twisted oak trees covered in green moss and dotted with mushrooms.
These ancient dwarf trees have grown for centuries in a secluded part of Dartmoor, creating a fairytale-like place.
3. Babbacombe Model Village
See tiny buildings and scenes beautifully created at Babbacombe’s Model Village. Explore incredibly detailed small-scale copies of landmarks, villages, and towns from across England.
The best miniature attraction allows you to discover exquisite hand-crafted models up close and even become a giant walking through Lilliputian streets! Great family fun imagining yourself shrinking while touring this tiny world.
4. Take a Seaton Tramway Ride
Ride comfortable heritage tramcars along a flat, scenic railway route showcasing beautiful Axe Valley vistas.
Pass through forested areas, meadows, and the riverside while hearing interesting commentary. Kids will love the family-friendly tram ride revealing the English countryside.
5. Visit the Big Sheep
At this popular family attraction, enjoy sheep-themed shows, walks, zoo exhibits and even sheep racing!
Learn surprising facts about sheep while feeding, petting or watching sheepdog demonstrations. An amusingly entertaining way for kids and parents to discover sheep husbandry first-hand.
6. Visit the Golden Hind in Brixham
Climb aboard a full-sized reconstruction of Sir Francis Drake’s 16th-century ship docked in Brixham Harbour. Walk the decks imagining sailing the high seas during Tudor times.
Kids can dress up as pirates and take part engagingly in a treasure hunt adventure onboard.
7. Visit the House of Marbles
This amazing marble museum lets you explore thousands of beautiful glass and stone marbles spanning centuries.
Learn about marble history while playing classic marble games. Kids and adults alike will enjoy the vast collection and fun interactive exhibits.
8. Go Underground at Kents Cavern
Descend into the depths of these ancient caves used by Stone Age people. Walk through impressive limestone caverns and winding tunnels created over countless years.
Marvel at rock formations, archaeological finds, and resident bats while learning about the caves’ long history.
9. The Templer Way Tramway
Trace an early 19th-century granite tramway built to transport clay and workers through the countryside on the scenic Templer Way.
Follow old rail routes across hay fields, heather moorland, forests and babbling streams until reaching the impressive Stover Canal. Finish at Teignmouth’s beaches exploring this legacy of Devon pioneer, James Templer’s fascinating industrial past.
10. Explore the Valley of the Rocks
Trek through the unworldly Valley of the Rocks near Lynton to admire its striking volcanic rock formations and cliffs surrounded by the sea.
Follow winding trails around pinnacle stone spires, steep ravines, small caves, and grazing mountain goats in this geologically fascinating landscape.
11. Attend Brixham’s Pirate Festival
Enjoy pirate-themed family fun at Brixham’s annual Pirate Festival on the harbour!
See performers enact swashbuckling scenes, sword fights, and pirate character adventures throughout town. With live music, performances, dressing up and market stalls, Brixham’s Pirate Festival promises a high seas good time for pirates of all ages!
12. Take a Ghost Tour in Plymouth
Join a late-night walking tour through creepy alleys and burial grounds of Plymouth’s historic sites.
Hear chilling tales of resident spirits, haunted mansions, and paranormal encounters from a theatrical guide. Visit dark places linked to tragic events while discovering the city’s supernatural secrets.
13. Go Crabbing at Salcombe
Try catching fresh crabs off the docks and estuary waters of scenic Salcombe. Use simple bait and line techniques used by locals for generations. The perfect activity to keep kids occupied for hours.
14. Explore the Jurassic Coast by Kayak
Paddle a kayak along sheer coastal cliffs and secluded coves that reveal 185 million years of geological history.
This stunning UNESCO World Heritage Site holds visible prehistoric ammonites, fossils, and richly hued rock layers from the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods now eroded dramatically by the sea.
15. Attend the Totnes Orange Races
Each March, watch colourfully dressed daredevils sprint while balancing oranges to roll down steep High Street in chaotic annual races. J
oin cheering crowds spurring on runners hoping their orange makes it furthest without falling off in this zany Elizabethan-era tradition.
16. Visit the Bickleigh Castle
Explore the enchanting 800-year-old Norman Bickleigh Castle. Try medieval archery on the sprawling grounds or observe magnificent birds of prey like falcons and owls during scheduled displays of this regal ancient sport.
More Unusual Things to Do in Devon:
- Go snorkelling at a WWII shipwreck site in Lyme Bay – Take a guided snorkel tour to see the beautifully preserved remains of ships sunk during a wartime training exercise.
- Take a Torbay treasure trail – Interesting self-guided walking tours direct you to uncover clues revealing stories of smuggling coves and haunted feats.
- Watch a performance at the Theatre Royal Plymouth – This local theatre company puts on quirky, avant-garde productions in their historic city centre venue.
- Take a ghost walk in Clovelly Village – Led by a village historian, hear tales of hauntings and paranormal activity as you climb up and down this picturesquely steep fishing hamlet after dark.
- Explore the Museum of Dartmoor Life – Discover intriguing artefacts and recreations portraying the rugged, rustic lifestyles of generations past on Dartmoor.
- Try paddleboarding with dogs – Some providers offer stand-up paddleboarding lessons where eager dogs can ride along on board or swim nearby.
- Attend a Gin Festival – Devon hosts several festivals each year celebrating unique local and national gin varieties.
Still Wondering What Else You Can Do in Devon?
Looking for more unusual things to do in Devon? Explore the stunning coastline for outdoor activities and breathtaking views.
Don’t miss the UK’s largest aquarium and indulge in cream teas at traditional tea rooms. Wander through market halls for unique souvenirs, or take a nostalgic trip on the Dartmouth Steam Railway.