Why go there?
Any country lover will be in awe of the supreme natural beauty of Dartmoor. With endless walks over the tors there is plenty of room to explore and admire the local wildlife; including the infamous Dartmoor ponies that carried tin off the moor, which is central to Chagford’s lineage. With many nature reserves and reservoirs there will always be plenty to see.
If you enjoy horse riding there are opportunities to gallop across the wide plains of the park, or trek through the beautiful lanes, The Dartmoor Stables are located 25 minutes away at Widecombe in the Moor. For those who would prefer to indulge in a traditional Devon cream tea, Chagford is filled with quirky teashops serving light refreshments and home cooked meals.
Chagford is rich with historical buildings, firmly holding on to its roots with the famous ironmongery stores, Webbers and Bowdens on the high street. There is additionally Endecott House built in the 16th Century, which dominates the town square, which has been used as the local school but now provides a space for the local community to meet.
A hidden gem that lies just outside of Chagford is the impressive Gidleigh Park Hotel providing gourmet meals for those who want to spoil themselves! With acclaimed Head Chef Michael Caines and an array of awards, he and his team are sure to excite your taste buds, as well as special offers on lunches, you can dine with breathtaking views across the moor.
Chagford is famous for it’s vast selection of festivals and annual show selling local produce, appealing to everyone all year round. In the autumn there is the new Chagford film festival, and in the spring the ChagWord literary festival. There is additionally the popular Chagstock music festival in July. This rural town really does accommodate all delights all year round!
Where to stay
You will be spoilt for choice with a vast selection of pubs, guesthouses and delightful country cottages.
Stay in one of Chagford’s oldest houses Cyprian’s Cot and surround yourself in culture. With two comfortable rooms, a guest sitting area with an inglenook fireplace and a private walled garden with moorland views, there is plenty to offer. Rooms are from £30 a night including breakfast in a panelled dining room, and dogs welcomed on arrangement it is great value for money.
Where to eat
Among the many quirky cafes and pubs that Chagford boasts is the Ring O’ Bells Inn which promises to offer ‘A Warm Dartmoor Welcome’. With a varied selection of fresh ploughman lunches and a daily specials board it is sure to please. Everything is locally sourced to give a fresh taste of all Devon has to offer.
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Tell us a local secret…
Dartmoor is a place riddled with ghost stories and folklore, Chagford being no exception. There is a local legend of the Faithless Wives, which tells of how unfaithful wives were trekked across the moor, where the would wash their hair in Cranmere pool on route to the stone circle called The Grey Wethers. The Wives had to pray for forgiveness – if the stone stayed erect she was forgiven, and if it fell over she would have to face the consequences.