Best walks in Dartmoor

This huge moorland scattered with staggering granite tors in the south-east of Devon is a hiker's paradise – discover the best walking routes in Dartmoor National Park with our guide


Dartmoor national park comprises 386 square miles of moorlands, forests, rivers, wetlands and craggy granite tors.


The area is considered by many to be Britain’s bleakest national park, but in spite of this reputation its varied habitats and prehistoric remains are a great draw for many outdoor enthusiasts.

One of the best ways to explore Dartmoor is by using its impressive network of footpaths. Here’s our guide to some of the best walks in the national park.

Wistman’s Wood, Devon

Sun falls through the canopy of Wistman's ancient oaks
Sun falls through the canopy of Wistman’s ancient oaks ©Getty

Wistman’s Wood is an easy walk on a waymarked path in the middle of Dartmoor National Park. Creep beneath the trees’ lichen-covered boughs in a woodland that has remained unspoilt for hundreds of years. Map and route.

Burrator, Devon

The golden colours of autumn splashed by the rising sun against the river at Burrator near Plymouth
River near Burrator Reservoir ©Getty

Rich in history and legend, Dartmoor National Park offers an exhilarating challenge for walkers and some of the most dramatic views in England. Map and route.

Great Staple and White Tor, Devon

Great Staple Tor
Great Staple Tor, Dartmoor ©Getty

Explore mysterious remains left by our distant ancestors on wild and beautiful Dartmoor with a walk from Great Staple Tor to White Tor. Map and route.

Teign Gorge, Devon

Hannicombe Wood
Hannicombe Wood ©Getty

Take an autumn walk from Castle Drogo through Piddledown Common and Fingle Wood a see one of England’s largest woodland restoration projects. Map and route.

Hound Tor, Devon

Hound Tor

Hound Tor ©GettyGhosts, witches and dragons: walkers looking for some scary stories should head for Dartmoor. This moderate walking route takes in a host of Dartmoor’s famous tors – Saddle, Haytor, Howell Tor and Hound Tor. Map and route.

Iddesleigh and Dartmoor, Devon

Gutter Tor cloudscape
Gutter Tor cloudscape

The hills, moorlands and coastlines of Devon’s landscape have long provided inspiration for Britain’s authors, poets and playwrights, from Agatha Christie and Arthur Conan Doyle to Thomas Hardy and Jane Austen. Discover the landscape that inspired Michael Morpurgo’s War Horse with this four-mile walk from Gutter Tor to Higher Hartor Tor in Dartmoor National Park. Map and route.

Lydford Gorge, Devon

Lydford Gorge ©Getty
Lydford Gorge ©Getty

Stretching for 1½ miles, the steep-sided Lydford Gorge is a spectacular chasm in the hills. At one end lies the impressive Devil’s Cauldron whirlpool, while the 30m (100ft)-high White Lady waterfall is at the other. Map and route.


Main image ©Getty