Maximise your experience
Dartmoor and its surroundings offer a wide range of activities to suit all members of your group – there is no shortage of experiences to try and places to visit. Some of our suggestions about sporty/active activities are detailed below, but do also take a look at our Days Out page or look for further ideas on the Visit Dartmoor or Visit Devon website.
Horse riding: Pony trekking on Dartmoor can be booked at Cholwell Farm & Riding Stables in Mary Tavy – approximately 20 minutes drive from Vixen Tor Farm.
Kayaking/canoeing: Tamar Trails offer canoeing on the river Tamar – a truly relaxing way to enjoy the stunning scenery and wildlife on and around the Tamar Valley. A Canoe Tamar safari is only 20 minutes drive from Vixen Tor Farm.
Tree surfing: For an adrenaline-pumping, heart-thumping bird’s eye experience, get up into the tree canopy by clambering over and through a complex of ladders, rope bridges, zip wires and walkways at Tamar Trails.
Mountain biking and cycling: Mountain bikers can experience stunning rides across the moor and the Tamar Valley, with options to vary terrain and difficulty. There are also a multitude of challenging road rides across and around the moors. A number of guide books in the barns set out local routes, as well as online resources including the Cycling on Dartmoor page of the Visit Dartmoor website and an interactive cycle map on Travel Devon. Two of the most popular local routes include Drake’s Trail and the Granite Way (both are part of the National Cycle Network – NCN Route 27).
You can hire bikes to ride Drake’s Trail (or ride wherever you want) from Tavistock Cycles who offer hybrid bikes on a day rate basis. Their bikes are perfect for general riding and cycle tracks.
To ride the Granite Way, you can hire bicycles from Devon Cycle Hire, which is located right on the trail itself. They stock a wide range of hybrid bicycles for hire, of all sizes, and also serve delicious fresh coffee and snacks. Based at Sourton Down, Devon Cycle Hire is c25 minutes drive from Vixen Tor Farm.
For mobile bike service, contact Dartmoor Cycle Workshop, run by mountain and road bike specialist Andy Boyle. Andy can come to Vixen Tor Farm to give your bike a thorough service at the start of your break, or fix any problems which may arise during your stay. Andy is also a qualified guide and can take groups on local day or half day rides, with pub breaks!
Wild swimming: Discover beautiful and secluded wild swimming spots all over Dartmoor. You don’t need to venture far as there is access to a private stretch of the River Walkham about ten minutes away.
Walking: With the whole wild expanse of Dartmoor to explore, right from the doorstep at Vixen Tor Farm, you will not be short of places to explore and find on foot. Walks in the immediate vicinity are suggested in the Guest folder, and there are OS maps in the Barns to help you plan your own route. Other suggestions can be found on the Walking on Dartmoor page of the Visit Dartmoor website, and the Granite Way’s spur routes.
Climbing – independent: The immediate area provides plentiful outdoor climbing opportunities, and there are also challenging pitches at Foggintor Quarry and Sheeps Tor. For indoor climbing try The Barn Climbing Centre in Milton Abbot (30 mins drive).
Climbing – guided: Highly experienced and qualified Mountaineering & Climbing Instructors (MCI) offer several different climbing course options, as detailed on their website Crag 2 Mountain. In particular, the guided multi-pitch climbing course is a fantastic way to see some of the awesome climbing routes in this part of the southwest, and is tailored to your skill level and aspirations. Families with young children particularly enjoy the Rock Adventure Session which includes plenty of rock climbing, abseiling and ‘weaselling’ (squeezing through short tunnels in the Tors).
Hill walking and navigation skills: Crag 2 Mountain provide a range of navigation courses to get the most of your time on Dartmoor. Get started in countryside and moorland walking (including basic map and compass skills) or develop advanced compass skills to get off the beaten track. All courses will give you a fantastic day out on the moors.
Caving: Led by experienced and qualified Caver Leaders, Crag 2 Mountain‘s Caving Adventure Session is a great way to explore our local cave system, learn about the cave and its history. Perfect for beginners and those who have never caved before, with big open caverns and challenges along the way.