Bally Brilliant Best Bits To Visit Around @Middle Coombe Farm, Devon.

Situated in the heart of Devon, exclusive C16th Middle Coombe Farm & it’s 400 acres of farm & private woodland is fantastically situated for guests to enjoy this fabulous, historic area. This is still a family home and the love and constant sympathetic restoration of the buildings & grounds mean this venue becomes more beautiful each year. Leave the car parked up for the weekend and enjoy the tranquility of your very own country house experience with your family & friends or explore the surrounding areas. Whether you love walking, riding, fishing, cycling, art, history, simply watching birds & nature in their element or just general exploring, this location is fantastic.

Celebrity Inspired Dresses


Bampton: 15 minutes drive

Our little local town has a surprising range of local amenities – shops, great pubs, restaurants & businesses. It also has quite a history from the Romans to its early Saxon origins, the Norman castle, the wool and pony trade, the 12th century church, the quarrying of the local stone; now it is a thriving centre used by local villagers and visitors. Bampton has a wonderful secret.. Bawdens the Bakers. This is a family run business, established in 1939 by Frank J Bawden, and is still in his family todayThe bread is still handcrafted by master bakers on the premises. There are always keen queues when the baker opens at 7.30am Bampton is mentioned in the Doomsday book & the famous Bampton Fair (which existed even before King Henry III granted it a Royal Charter in 1258) is always held on the last Thursday of October.

Tiverton & its Castle: 15 minutes drive:

Set in the hills between Dartmoor and Exmoor, the ancient market town of Tiverton sits on the banks of the River Exe. Few people realise just how ancient the settlement. Human occupation actually dates back to the Stone Age. There is a great pannier market on Saturdays selling wonderful locally grown fruit & veg & there are plenty of places to have tea & coffee in this old market town. Tiverton has a lovely Victorian Park & famous castle.  Originally built in 1106 by order of Henry I, and later rebuilt and much enlarged in the 13th and 14th centuries, Tiverton Castle was once home of the powerful medieval Earls of Devon and of a Plantagenet Princess. With later additions and alterations down the centuries all periods of architecture from medieval to modern can be seen, with beautiful walled gardens within the romantic ruins.

Part Scheduled Ancient Monument and part Grade I Listed, the Castle is the private home of Angus and Alison Gordon, who are happy to share it with visitors. Check their website for tour day & times.

Knightshayes Court. National Trust: 10 minute drive 

Discover Knightshayes, a country estate on a grand, gothic scale. Acres of glorious gardens and parkland surround a spectacular Gothic Revival house; Knightshayes is the complete country gentleman’s dream.
The house is a rare example of the work of William Burges, whose richly decorated interiors have always inspired extremes in opinion. Full of quirks and curiosities, you can see gargoyles, corbels and a medieval inspired great hall. It is worth a visit just for it’s collection of fine paintings. Sebastiano Ricci features together with the colossal & superb unfinished masterpiece-The Judgment of Soloman- by Sebastiano del Piombo…a personal favourite.
The garden is one of the finest in Devon and its collection represents one of the most varied in the National Trust; with over 1200 plant species unique to Knightshayes and riotous seasonal colour, it’s always worth a visit.

Covering an area of just over four acres, the walled kitchen garden is another great highlight, brimming with seasonal produce for the Stables Café.

Killerton House. National Trust: 30 minute drive

Glorious landscape garden surrounded by parkland, fine 18th-century house with renowned historical fashion collection.
Would you give away your family home for your political beliefs? Sir Richard Acland did just this with his Devon countryside estate. At 2,590 hectares (6,400 acres) it is one of the largest the National Trust has acquired (it includes 20 farms and 200-plus cottages).This year’s fashion exhibition ‘The F-word: The changing language of fashion’ explores how revolutionary innovations in fabric, cut and fastenings have changed the shape of fashion for ever.

Enjoy a family day out and see the beautiful garden full of colour all year round – with rhododendrons, magnolias and rare trees surrounded by rolling Devon countryside.

Exeter Cathedral: 30 minute drive 

Exeter Cathedral, one of the great cathedrals of England, and one of the finest examples of Gothic architecture anywhere.

Iconic and beautiful as it is, the Cathedral is not a museum. Though the stewards are a significant part of the heritage of Exeter, they are most importantly a living community of faith, working to ensure that everyone who walks through the doors is inspired, engaged and moved by their experience.

The City of Exeter: 30 minute drive

Exeter is located in the Southwest of England. It is situated on the River Exe in the county of Devonshire & is a city of many aspects. Full of character and ancient history, Exeter still offers all the amenities and comforts that would be expected of a modern day city & great shopping & dining experiences. Exeter museum has just undergone a huge transformation & is a fantastic museum for all ages. Beautifully curated Michael Caines (M.B.E.) at Abode Exeter, located on the beautiful Cathedral Green, is Exeter’s most fabulous place to dine.

Exeter’s Historic Quayside: 30 minute drive

The Quayside has been enhanced to provide a fascinating mix of historic and contemporary design. It is the ideal place to browse in antique shops (of which there are many), walk and cycle, take a relaxing boat trip or find something good to eat. There is an extensive programme of events on the River Exe, in the Transit Shed and Piazza Terracina, including dragon boat racing and art exhibitions. There is plenty to occupy families and children of all ages.

Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery in Exeter (RAMM) is a museum and art gallery in Exeter, Devon, the largest in the city. It holds significant and diverse collections in areas such as zoologyanthropology, fine art, local and overseas archaeology, and geology. Altogether the museum holds over one million objects, of which a small percentage is on permanent public display. Founded in 1868, the Gothic Revival building has undergone several extensions during its history; most recently, the museum was opened in December 2011 after a redevelopment that lasted four years and costing £24M. It offers a great experience.

Topsham. Devon:  30 minute drive

 The pretty little town of Topsham was once the second busiest port in England. Topsham is a beautiful town on the Exe estuary, Devon, famous for its Dutch houses. Now part of Exeter, it nevertheless maintains a distinctive identity. Loved by its locals, and savoured by those who visit, Topsham offers river walks; wildlife; a Saturday morning market; many characterful shops, restaurants and inns; and quiet space to sit and watch the sailing boats go by. But while present-day Topsham is undoubtedly picturesque and has a rich historical heritage, it always has been a working town. Despite no longer being one of the great trading ports of Britain, it continues to have a very strong business and commercial life, with traditional maritime trades continuing alongside the modern and computerised.

For a romantic riverside walk

Take the tiny Topsham Ferry across the Exe. You can then follow the towpath of the historic Exeter Ship Canal to the popular pub at Turf Locks or continue on to Powderham Castle, currently home to the 18th Earl and Countess of Devon.

Another well trodden option is the Goat Walk. Opened in 1908, this pretty path has long been a favourite with local lovers despite its rather unromantic name. Stroll along the narrow wall that frames a perfect picture of the estuary backed by the deep green of the Haldon Hills. The footpath joins a Devon country lane with high banks on one side, spotted yellow in spring with primroses and lesser celandines.

Wildlife spectacles

Further along lies Bowling Green Marsh – one of the south-west’s best birdwatching spots. Enjoy the spectacle of thousands of overwintering wildfowl and waders from the hide. Visit just before or after high tide and look out for clouds of black and white avocets swirling above the water.

Golden moments

The Exe Estuary is well known for its wonderful sunsets, so grab some fish and chips from the award-winning Galley restaurant, cuddle up in one of Topsham’s many quiet corners and watch the water gradually turn from silver to gold.

Powderham Castle: 50 mins approx.

The Manor of Powderham was mentioned in the Domesday Book. It is located in a unique, picturesque setting just outside Exeter, beside the Exe estuary. Six hundred years of history are contained within the walls of one of England’s oldest family homes. Sir Philip Courtenay began building it in 1391 and it has remained in the same family to this day, currently home to the 18th Earl & Countess of Devon.  The magical setting and convenient location makes it the perfect venue for all manner of events including weddings and business functions. For locals and visitors to Devon it is a ‘must see’ and with its many attractions – a wonderful family day out!

Dartmoor: 30 minutes drive

Dartmoor National Park’s landscape is as dramatic as its weather. From its striking granite tors to steep wooded river valleys and from swathes of heather covered moorland to tucked away villages and hamlets. It is a land of contrasts – some people come to experience the tranquillity by getting away from it all, whilst others come to get active.

Dartmoor has 450 miles (730km) of paths, tracks and open moorland for you to explore on foot, bike or horseback and it is also a great place to try out new activities, such as climbing and geocaching.

Guided walks

Why not join an organised walk led by an experienced guide? You don’t need to worry about getting lost and guided walks are a great way to discover more about Dartmoor’s beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage.

Walking on Exmoor. Exmoor National Park: 40 minutes drive

Whether you are an experienced walker or someone who prefers a short stroll, Exmoor National Park is the ideal place to explore the outdoors on foot. With over 1000km of footpaths and bridleways, through oak woodlands, alongside tumbling rivers and across open heather-covered moorland, the variety is endless. Some of the country’s finest long distance routes pass through our National Park, or you can plan your own adventure to explore this unique landscape. Keep an eye out for the beautiful & cheeky Exmoor ponies who live wild on Exmoor & who used to be sold at the famous Bampton Charter Fair.

Exmoor National Park is designated an International Dark Sky Reserve –  the first in Europe! Exmoor National Park is home to some of the darkest skies in the country so it’s a great place to gaze at the stars.

For thousands of years, humans have looked up at the night sky and wondered at what they saw. This wonder helped to define our sense of who we are, our myths and legends, our religious beliefs and our sense of our place in a wider cosmos.  But the dark skies that were the night time backdrop for the vast majority of human history are for many of us know a rare site. Our night times are filled with the orange glow of street lighting and we are all more likely to be looking at a television that looking at the start. So why not take the time on Exmoor to look up and rediscover your sense of wonder? Good spots are Holdstone Hill, County Gate, Brendon Two Gates, Webbers Post, Anstey Gate, Haddon Hill and Wimbleball Lake.On a clear night the night sky of Exmoor is simply stunning when many astronomical sights can be seen through the naked eye and even more can be discovered through a telescope or binoculars.

Horse Riding

One great aspect of discovering Exmoor on horseback is the mixture of landscape and terrain available. Experience wide open moorland, inviting woodland tracks, as well as farmland fields and country lanes. Coming across livestock is a regular occurrence, this BHS leaflet on riding through cattle and other animals provides guidance on doing it safely. The current OS Explorer map is another useful tool to discovering some of the best bridleways on offer.

Exmouth Beach: 40 minute drive

Great, long white sandy beach & actually a personal favourite all year round. You can even take your dogs onto the beach between October and May each year so no member of your family need be left behind. Exmouth is the gateway to the UNESCO designated Devon Heritage Coast. Start your exploration of this beautiful coastline at Orcombe Point in Exmouth.
The Dorset and East Devon Coast has been officially ranked alongside the Great Barrier Reef and the Grand Canyon as one of the natural wonders of the world. The coast provides a walk through time of 185 million years of the earth’s history and stretches from Orcombe Point at Exmouth in Devon to Old Harry Rocks in Dorset.