Combe Martin Cottages
Combe Martin is a village with a significant quirk. The village consists of one long street that is wedged into the valley and runs for roughly one and a half miles. At one end of Combe Martin you can be in the countryside a stone's throw from Exmoor, at the other end you could be sat on the beach staring out into the ocean.
The A399 is the road splitting the village in half, and is packed on either side by a host of pubs, restaurants and quaint cottages. In fact, the street is thought to be one of the longest in England, and here in the office we once heard it holds a Guinness World Record. Now this would need clarifying, but apparently Combe Martin holds the record for the longest ever street party.
What is there to do in and around Combe Martin?
Combe Martin is blessed with its own little beach. Sheltered from the elements, this sandy beach is very popular with families and locals. Most beaches in the UK can feel slightly detached from the village or town they are connected with, but not Combe Martin Beach. You can be sat on the beach, just a few yards away from the main high street, a unique experience, but that is not to say the beach will be a noisy, bustling environment.
If you want to be a little more active down by the beach then you can hire out a kayak, and paddle your way out into the bay. If you are lucky, you may even spot a dolphin or two.
Away from the shoreline, you can head along the high street and dip in and out of the many boutique shops and cafes. With many coastal walks and Exmoor on the door step, it could be well worth dropping into Outdoor Leisure. They stock a variety of paraphernalia, perfect for outdoor activities. For the kids, Tina’s Sweet Shop is sure to keep them happy (and hopefully not too hyper!). Packed with sweets and treats from traditional to retro, pick n mix to jars, this is a must visit.
On the edge of the village is one of North Devon’s largest attractions. Combe Martin Wildlife and Dinosaur Park is a popular family attraction set in 28 acres of beautifully presented gardens. The park is home to several exotic animals including: lions, meerkats, penguins and reptiles.
Just a ten minute drive from the village and you can be in the heart of Ilfracombe, a seaside town packed with activities and holiday souvenirs. If you want to find the golden beaches of Woolacombe and Croyde, they will be roughly a 30 minute drive from your Combe Martin cottage.
Where are the best places to eat and drink in Combe Martin?
At one point in time, the village was home to nine pubs, all scattered along the main high street. Today the number of pubs has been significantly reduced, but the quality of the food and drink still remains. Ye Olde George and Dragon is a tavern steeped in over 400 years of history, you will never be short of an ale or two inside. It is also home to the Quackers Restaurant, serving up delicious pub grub Wednesday-Saturday, and a speciality carvery on a Sunday.
As with all locations near the coast, fish and chip shops are the cornerstone of traditional grub. Black and White Fish and Chip Shop, and Top Chippy, both vie for the attention of chip loving public.
And lastly, but certainly not least, no trip to Combe Martin is complete without a visit into the Pack O Cards Inn. Its unique shape, design and name are rumoured to have originated from a gentleman named George Ley. He reportedly built the inn following his successful gambling exploits, and in homage to his victory, he built the property to reflect a pack of cards. The inn originally had 52 windows, 13 rooms, and four floors. Today it serves up a tasty a la carte menu with locally sourced produce, complete with stunning riverside garden.