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Join the thousands of sheep that flock to Woolacombe for the annual ovine hairdressing championships, with a trip to the green and pleasant gardens of the Golden Coast Holiday Village.
Visitors will find masses of free activities on site, from the pumped up (cycling, tennis, water flumes, four indoor and outdoor swimming pools), to the more leisurely (indoor and outdoor bowling, fishing, pitch and putt, sauna and solarium). Although there’s no shortage of mod cons, the site retains a old school charm, not least thanks to its Old Mill Inn, which has been keeping people fed and watered since the seventeenth century.
In the evenings, guests can chill out and enjoy the valley views, grab a pint in the sports bar, or enjoy entertainment including game shows, family discos, tribute bands, comedians and illusionists.
“Messy mayhem” is promised at the various kids’ clubs for all age groups, and the little sprouts will have a beano on the electric go-karts, bungee trampoline and climbing wall; parents can confirm that their offspring actually do walk on water as they take to the inflatable human hamster balls in the pool, or show off their board skills on the Wavesurfer artificial wave machine. For a pit stop, try creating a family heirloom over a cuppa at the ceramic painting café.
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Leisure on park
Bar or club house
Indoor swimming pool
Outdoor swimming pool
Amenities on park
Ice pack freezing
Parent & baby washroom
Pick-up from public transport
Propane/gas cylinders available
Touring and motorhomes
Full hook-up sites
Gray water hook-up for RVs/trailers
Motorhome service point
Tourer storage facilities
Water hook-up points for tourers
Barbecue grills allowed
Commercial vehicles allowed
Leave the car at home
Cycle hire nearby
Horseback riding nearby
Indoor pool nearby
Leisure/theme park nearby
Mountain biking nearby
Outdoor pool nearby
Surf school nearby
Single-sex groups welcome
Student groups welcome
Convenience store nearby
Nearby farmers' market
Public transportation nearby
Large (51-200 sites)
- Coach stations
Ilfracombe Bus Station
— 6.0 kilometres
6.0 kilometres Braunton (Devon): George Hotel Coach Stop — 7.1 kilometres
7.1 kilometres Chivenor (Devon): Camp Gates Coach Stop — 9.0 kilometres
- Train stations
Barnstaple Rail Station
— 13.3 kilometres
13.3 kilometres Chapelton (Devon) Rail Station — 20.1 kilometres
20.1 kilometres Umberleigh Rail Station — 23.6 kilometres
- Ferry ports
Ilfracombe Ferry Landing
— 6.4 kilometres
6.4 kilometres Appledore Ferry Landing — 13.0 kilometres
13.0 kilometres Instow Ferry Landing — 13.3 kilometres
— 48.7 kilometres
From Junction 27 of the M5 take the third exit on the left hand and follow the signs for the A361 to Barnstaple approximately 34 miles away. The views from this road are amazing, as there are hills and trees as far as the eye can see, with the odd scatter of houses dotted around the rural landscape. Be aware of speed cameras situated on these open stretches of roads.
Approximately 10 and a half miles from J27 you will come to Stoodleigh Cross where for about 10 miles onwards on the left, stags are often seen. Continue along this road until you arrive at the South Molton roundabout housing "The Northgate Inn".
At this point there is a choice of routes. If it is not a busy time it is easier to drive through Barnstaple by going straight over this roundabout and continuing along the link road. However if it is busy and you don't want to get stuck in traffic then turn right at this roundabout and follow the A399 to Combe Martin.
Please note that this route is not suitable for touring caravans.
If You Choose the A399
Turn right at South Molton roundabout and carry along this road, this tends to become very bendy so beware of slow moving tractors. You will come to The Old Station Inn at Blackmoor Gate, continue straight past and follow the road. Approximately 39 miles from the M5 you will see the Bristol Channel at Combe Martin Bay. Along this road you will come across the turn off to your left, sign posted Woolacombe on the B3343. Follow this road for 4 miles until you reach a junction known as Berry Down Cross, Turn left here. Beware of the sharp bend but follow it around to the right. Continue until you reach the petrol station situated at Lynton Cross Junction.
Travel straight across the junction and follow the road till approximately 47 miles from the M5 you will reach Mullacott Cross Roundabout. Proceed straight across and follow the signs for Woolacombe.
If You Choose the A361 towards Barnstaple
Follow the link road for about 30 minutes until you see the town of Barnstaple in front of you. Turn left at the 1st roundabout towards Bideford (as it will be faster than travelling through the town centre) and proceed along the A361 and turn right at the 2nd roundabout signposted A361 Ilfracombe. After a mile or so continue straight through the 2 sets of traffic lights on the roundabout and over the Taw Bridge, turn left when you reach the dual carriage way following the A361 through the villages of Braunton and Knowle until you reach Mullacott Cross Roundabout.
At the roundabout take the first exit which is the B3343 to Woolacombe, after 2 miles you will come to a Y junction. For the Golden Coast Holiday Park follow the road around to the left and you will arrive at the park on your left.
Venture out and you’ll find loads to see and do in this part of North Devon. Clamber down the steep, cobbledy streets to the fishing boats on Clovelly’s fourteenth century quay, or pay a visit to Barnstaple Pannier Market to browse the local foodstuffs, arts and crafts, and antiques. Watermouth Castle has dungeon labyrinths and a gnome land (anyone who thinks this sounds like the stuff of nightmares will be pacified by the dreamy views!).
Nature lovers might enjoy an outing to the Exmoor wilderness to spot wild deer and ponies, or to the ruggedly beautiful Valley of the Rocks for wild goats and fossil hunting.
The kids can come face-to-leg with scarily lifelike dinosaurs and go swimming with sea lions at Combe Martin Wildlife and Dinosaur Park, or just get spaced out by the rides at the Milky Way adventure theme park.
- RHS Garden Rosemoor (25.4 kilometres)
- Arlington Court and the National Trust Carriage Museum (13.7 kilometres)
- Heddon Valley (17.9 kilometres)
Find local routes on the National Cycle Network - over 12,000 miles of cycling routes.