Exmoor national park covered in purple heather, yellow flowers and green fields in the background
Exmoor national park covered in purple heather, yellow flowers and green fields in the background

Somerset - Exmoor National Park

Discover Exmoor National Park

At just 693 square kilometres, Exmoor is one of the UK’s smallest National Parks. But what it lacks in size it more than makes up for in beauty and variety.

Exmoor is a landscape that's been shaped by generations of people who have managed the environment and farmed it for thousands of years. Today, it's famed for its wonderful variety of grass and heather moors, ancient woodlands, picturesque villages, dramatic coastline, magnificent herds of red deer and native ponies, and its enchanting, starry, dark skies.

On Exmoor it's still possible to find tranquillity and peace as well as rediscover your sense of adventure; to catch a glimpse of wild red deer, be amazed by dark skies full of stars and explore quaint villages full of character and charm.

The Park has a wide range of habitats, including moorland, thick oak woodland, clear streams, and dramatic coastline. Numerous species inhabit these various habitats, including otters, and some of the most endangered butterflies and bats in the UK. Because Exmoor's wildlife is so important, nearly a third of the National Park is protected by UK and European law.

Some of the best dark skies in the UK can be found here. There is very little light pollution, and if there are no clouds, you can see the Milky Way and literally thousands of stars with your naked eye. The International Dark Sky Association made Exmoor an International Dark Sky Reserve in 2011.

Exmoor National Park is the ideal location for exploring on foot, whether you're a seasoned walker or just dabble now and then, the variety is endless. Exmoor’s 1000km of footpaths and bridelways make for a true walker’s paradise, providing spectacular access to the rugged heritage coastline amid high open moorland, wooded combes and tumbling streams. It's a landscape that has inspired generations of poets, artists and writers.

Do you like how the tarmac feels under your wheels? With all encompassing perspectives and steep valleys to climb, Exmoor has probably the best assortment of bike trails in the country. There are routes for all abilities.

The value of Exmoor is not only aesthetic. From a conservation point of view, the moorlands and oak woodlands are designated internationally for the habitats and species they support. And its archaeological and cultural heritage is remarkable: new sites and discoveries are frequent in the National Park. Plus it has a rich tradition of local art, literature, music and food.


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