Manaton to Heaven's Gate via Hisley Bridge Circular Walk, Manaton, Dartmoor National Park

Manaton to Heaven's Gate via Hisley Bridge Circular Walk, Manaton, Dartmoor National Park

This can be done as a walk or on horseback. Park in Manaton car park. Head north up the lane to the right of the village green and take the track and footpath to the right after approximately 100 metres, known locally as Slinkers Lane.*

At the end end of the rocky path at Horsham, turn right on to the track past the 'hobbit house' to Water. Follow the track through the houses and back on to a paved road. Don't turn right but follow the lane which is part of the Dartmoor Way past Beckams where it again becomes a rocky track. Horse riders be warned, it is very rocky but possible!

The track goes through a gate into the plantation of Houndtor Wood. Right leads to Becky Falls, a short circular route, and left uphill goes back towards Lustleigh Cleave. Instead, keep on up the middle track that zig zags down the plantation to a bridge with a gate.

Cross the Becka Brook and follow the Dartmoor Way beside the river with Trendlebere Down on your right. You will pass a wooden footbridge. This is a short cut up the Manaton Old Road. Continue to Hisley Bridge by going left through a gate by a large, round boulder. Horse riders can go through the ford or clamber over the ancient bridge. Follow the track that climbs up to the left of the other side of the river, now heading N/E.

At the top, you have a choice. You can either go through a small gate out of the plantation and follow the path bearing left and straight on. (Turn right up the hill for Heaven's Gate and Lustleigh.) Horse riders can take advantage of a great switchback canter by ignoring the first small gate (don't run over any walkers!) and turning left at the next gate further up.

Follow the path through Lustleigh Cleave, taking the left fork downhill to reach the River Bovey at a wooden footbridge. This was helicoptered in a few years ago to replace the slippery Clam Bridge. Horse riders can follow the blue waymarkers to a fairly muddy ford 200m to the right. Follow the rocky path west uphill. It can be a bit of a stream in wet weather. Eventually, you'll reach Water from which you retrace your steps to Manaton car park.

*For horse riders in a hurry, head back along the main road and take the lane to Water just past the Kestor Inn.