North Devon
North Devon

By Air

There are no airports in North Devon. The nearest airports are at Exeter, Plymouth, Newquay or Bristol. Exeter has a lot of charter flights to popular tourist destinations, but many can only be used when booked with a holiday, and are meant for a holiday from rather than to the UK. Scheduled services connect Exeter with many Western European cities, with the bulk of scheduled flights being operated by FlyBe. There are also scheduled flights to the Isle of Scilly with SkyBus.

Bristol Airport is a major UK Airport with flights to many European destinations as well as Trans-Atlantic flights to the US and Canada. This includes low-cost flights with Ryanair and EasyJet as well as National Airlines such as as KLM, Lufthansa and SAS.

There is also a small airport at Plymouth. Air Southwest run local flights from Plymouth to Bristol, Jersey and London Gatwick as well as services to Ireland, Manchester, Leeds, Glasgow and Newcastle.

There are flights from Newquay Airport to Bristol, Cork, Dublin, Glasgow, Grenoble, Leeds/Bradford, London Gatwick, Manchester and Newcastle with Air South West. Other airlines flying from the airport include FlyBe, British Airways and Ryanair.

If you are traveling from the London Airports of Gatwick, Heathrow, Luton or Stansted, it is best to take a train to Exeter St Davids station (from either Waterloo or Paddington), then change for a local train to Barnstaple. From Bristol, take the bus service to Bristol Temple Meads station then the train from Bristol to Barnstaple, changing in Exeter (taking around 2 and a half hours). From Exeter Airport take the bus to Exeter St Davids station from where there are direct trains to Barnstaple. From Newquay take the bus to Newquay town centre where there is a station for trains to Par and on to Exeter, where you can change to Barnstaple. From Plymouth take the bus into the city centre and then take the train to Barnstaple via Exeter.

By Coach

National Express run a long distance coach service which has coaches from London and Birmingham to towns in North Devon including Barnstaple, Westward Ho!, Northam, Bideford, Instow, Fremington, Braunton and Ilfracombe.

By Car

North Devon has reasonable road access. The A361 connects the M5 near Tiverton with North Devon, and the A377 also connects with the M5 near Exeter. The A39 (known as the Atlantic Coast Highway) goes close to the coast between Bude and Barnstaple. The majority of roads in North Devon, including much of the A361 and A39 are mostly single carriageway roads (in some cases with crawler lanes on hills) so be aware that journey times can be quite variable depending on the speed of traffic in front.

By Sea

The nearest Ferry port to North Devon is in Plymouth. Brittany Ferries operate from here to Roscoff, and Santander. This is useful if you are travelling from Europe and wish to take your own car with you. From Plymouth, it is a fair drive to the North Devon coast, probably taking around 90 minutes.

By Train

There is only one railway line in North Devon, which terminates at Barnstaple, at the end of the Tarka Line from Exeter. Main line trains run from Exeter to many parts of the country. The branch line service to Exeter is operated by First Great Western Trains. At Exeter there are long distance connections to Cornwall, Bristol, London, Birmingham, Manchester and the North. Trains from Exeter are operated by First Great Western (to Plymouth, Penzance, Exmouth, Bristol and London Paddington), Cross Country Trains (to Plymouth, Penzance, Bristol, Birmingham, Manchester, Northern England and Scotland), and South West Trains (to Salisbury and London Waterloo).

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