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The 7 best pubs to visit on your South Devon break; The insider view!

Updated: Oct 10, 2023

When you stay with us at Mill Cross Retreats, we share our extensive insider view guidebook with loads of tips for pubs & places to eat & drink, which after all, is a real highlight of most people's South Devon & Dartmoor stay! Whether you are coming to stay in beautiful South Devon or you live locally and would like some ideas, read on for our "7 of the best" pubs to visit.

What can we say? Obviously we are biased with this being our local but to be honest, it was a huge part of the draw for us of moving to lovely Rattery five years ago. Will & the team are attentive & friendly and the food is excellent, restaurant standard & locally sourced. A great range of local ales & well sourced wines plus Luscombe organic soft drinks. In better weather, there is a woodfired pizza oven in the garden.

With lovely open gardens & terrace outside for better weather or sit in the lovely oak framed dining room or enjoy a cosy meal & drink in the bar. 10/10!

A great favourite of ours, due in large part to their brilliant “no bull” ethics- local, organic & sustainable. This is a pub that not only walks the talk but dishes up consistently fabulous food & drink with a hipster vibe. If you care about what's on your plate or in your glass & you love all things seasonal, we'd heartily recommend booking a table at The Bull.

If we had to choose just one beach for you to visit, it would be Bigbury with lovely Burgh Island at it’s heart. The Pilchard Inn is a tiny (and we mean tiny!) pub on the island which serves up great fodder and drinks. Go at low tide, have a walk along the estuary and then up onto the island followed by fish & chips and a pint of ale.

Our favourite Dartmoor walk starts at Bonehill Rocks & goes across Hameldown to beautiful Widecombe in the Moor. The Rugglestone is our go-to destination and then it's just a 20 minute climb back up the hill to Bonehill. Of course, you can just drive to and park in Widecombe.

Beautiful outside (enjoy the chickens wandering around the garden as you sit by the stream) & in (cosy, beamed ceilings, open fire). Staff are friendly and efficient and there’s a great selection of tasty food, local ales & cider. Well worth a visit when you're in South Dartmoor.

A really lovely coastal pub in unspoilt Beesands (another brilliant walking destination) which is renowned for serving superb seafood amongst other wonderful food offerings. Offering local ales & gins amongst other libations with views out over the sea, this is one for your little black book.

If you're planning on a coastal stroll or are somewhere between Shaldon & Torquay, check out the Thatched Tavern. Serving Devon sourced, cooked in-house food, this is a lovely old pub with smashing gardens just a stone’s throw from Maidencombe beach. Beautifully decorated inside with lovely nooks, it’s also dog friendly.

Great sharing boards, venison burgers & pizzas, plus good drinks- what’s not to like here? Meavy is on the West side of Dartmoor and the area is well worth a visit- if you go, be sure to check out The Royal Oak.

For more news and views, follow @Millcross Retreats on Facebook or Instagram or sign up for our mailing list for info on lovely accommodation for 2, woodfired cookery & crafting courses & pop up dining.

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