Two Moors Way on Dartmoor, Dartmoor, Dartmoor National Park

Two Moors Way on Dartmoor, Dartmoor, Dartmoor National Park

The Two Moors Way is a long distance path that runs from Lynmouth on the Exmoor National Park coast all the way south to Ivybridge on the southern border of Dartmoor National Park. At over 100 miles, it's a long way but, clearly, one can dip into the walk at various points.

This listing covers the Two Moors Way in Dartmoor National Park.

We're based in the north east section of the Park. As such, all descriptions of long distance paths on Dartmoor run north to south or east to west. This route description starts at Drewsteignton on the northern border of the National Park and runs down to Ivybridge just beyond the southern border. We start with practical stuff like how far it is and how long it will take. There's a route description below that. The route description is broken down into four stages coinciding with towns and villages to make it easier to digest and plan your trip.

You can return and complete sections of the Two Moors Way using this listing. For example, you can walk the four sections over a four day period if you are completing the Two Moors Way in Dartmoor. Double up and walk two sections a day to complete the Way over a two day period. If you're testing yourself, yomp in a day but you'll need to be fit and hardened to long distance walking.


How far is the Two Moors Way in Dartmoor?

It's 'about' 40 miles. 'About' because you're likely to take a few detours to see some famous sights and there are also branch routes towards the middle of the Way that can add distance.


How long will it take to walk?

People run north/south in 5 hours. We've walked a 31 mile north/south route in 12 hours. The Two Moors Way in Dartmoor is a comfortable two day walk. It's leisurely over a three to four day period. So, it depends on the type of experience you want.


What's the walking like?

Dartmoor is a great National Park for kids. The terrain is gentle. Unlike in, say, the Scottish Highlands, you can cover large distances relatively easily on Dartmoor. Add in the fact that the Two Moors Way avoids Dartmoor's more tricky high moorland and it's straightforward walking.


Where can I stay?

There are lots of villages and a few towns on the Two Moors Way in Dartmoor. As such, there are plenty of places to stay. Click on the links to these villages and towns and browse 'Places to Stay' for accommodation:



How do I get to the start?

Buses run from Exeter to Drewsteignton and the Chagford area.


How do I get back from the end?

Trains take about an hour to get from Ivybridge to Exeter. Clearly, they head west to Plymouth and Cornwall if you're coming from that direction.


Is it well signposted?

Yes, look out for a MW waymarker.


Are there shops on the Way?

Yes. For example, there are shops in Drewsteington and Chagford to the north and Widecombe in the middle. Ivybridge is a big place by Dartmoor standards so there are plenty of places to grab food and drink there.


What kit do I need?

All the usual kit for a long distance yomp. Comfortable boots and backpack are essential.


The Two Moors Way in Dartmoor

Section 1. North border of Dartmoor National Park to Chagford

Crossing Dartmoor National Park's northern border on the Two Moors Way isn't the most inspiring experience. A bridge spans the A30 Exeter/Cornwall road and the Two Moors Way runs down a road to a farm. Pass through the farm and you're on an old track that takes you to the IIMW Sculpture. This faces north. There's another on the border of Exmoor National Park facing south. From the sculpture, continue along the track to West Mill Farm passing Secret Place on your way.

You come to a country road. Wander up the road to the pretty village Drewsteignton. There's a shop and pub. Head right, or west, out of the village and you'll see a waymarker. The Two Moors Way drops to a valley floor and then climbs very steeply through woods to a couple of large fields. Cross these and you are on the north lip of the sublime Teign Gorge.

A good path, known as the Hunter's Path, trends west to Sharp Tor which offers one of the finest views on the Two Moors Way and within Dartmoor National Park. You'll see the National Trust's Castle Drogo ahead of you above the mouth of the gorge. Dartmoor's north plateau forms the horizon. Between, below Meldon Hill, is the very popular town Chagford which is where you are off to now.

Leave Sharp Tor and walk the path down to Iron Bridge. Follow the River Teign upstream to Dogmarsh Bridge and past Granite Song to a long stretch of fields. You'll see Chagford and Meldon Hill in front of you. Chagford has lots of pubs, cafes and shops.

The first, short, section is complete.


Section 2. Chagford to Widecombe-in-the-Moor

Chagford Swimming Pool is on the edge of town near Rushford Bridge. By that bridge, the Two Moors Way trends west along the River Teign to Chagford Bridge. Look out for kingfishers. At Chagford Bridge, you connect with a country road that rises towards the luxury hotel Gidleigh Park. Before you get to the turning for Gidleigh Park, across the river from the National Trust's Milfordleigh Wood, an old track climbs steadily towards Teigncombe. It connects with a country road. Wander past a cluster of pretty houses and the Two Moors Way leaves the road as it doglegs and runs through a pretty section of countryside on the fringe of the high moor.

Continue to Great Frenchbeer and Teignworthy. There's a steep descent to the South Teign River and a short, sharp ascent to Yardworthy. At this point, the Two Moors Way splits. An eastern branch follows the old Mariners' Way. We're going to stay on the central path as it leaves pretty countryside and climbs to moorland.

Wander up the road from Yardworthy towards Fernworthy Forest and you come to Chagford Common. The Two Moors Way rises south. Detour slightly to see Hurston Ridge/Chagford Common Stone Row. Turn around and Meldon Hill and Chagford are behind you. Beyond them are the National Trust's Castle Drogo and the Teign Gorge.

Towards Water Hill at the top of Chagford Common, the Two Moors Way bends and dips east to cross the busy B3212 trans moorland road. Note that the highest pub in southern England, the Warren House Inn, is just down the road. At this point, the Two Moors Way splits again. A western branch heads down to Yar Tor and onto the Dart Gorge. Once again, we're staying on the central path because it's the most beautiful and interesting of the routes.

Cross the B3212 to look at Bennett's Cross. The Two Moors Way very obviously climbs a very beautiful area of moorland near Birch Tor and then drops to another road just north of Headland Warren Farm. It's then a yomp up to Hookney Tor with its fabulous views of English Heritage's Grimspound. Drop down to Grimspound. Climb the moor to Hameldown Tor. You're now on a whaleback of moorland called Hamel Down. The views are sensational. Heather and gorse are gorgeous in late summer.

You pass numerous ancient burial mounds before descending gently to the Widecombe-in-the-Moor area where you'll find pubs, cafes and a shop as well as places to stay.

The second section is complete.


Section 3. Widecombe-in-the-Moor to Holne

This section of the Two Moors Way connects north and south. From the moor above Widecombe-in-the-Moor, the Two Moors Way drops down to a country road. Divert to Hutholes Abandoned Medieval Settlement if interested. Follow the road to Jordan where a path takes you through a pretty woodland to Ponsworthy. A road climbs steeply north west and takes you to moorland. Wander south and you come to Dr Blackall's Drive on the north lip of the Dart Gorge.

Like the Teign Gorge, the views are sensational, especially in Autumn when the trees turn. Dr Blackall's Drive descends to New Bridge which is next to a very famous wild swimming area called Spitchwick. You then ascend through woodland to Holne. There are pubs and places to stay around Holne and nearby Scoriton. You are now below the south moor.

The third section is complete.


Section 4. Holne to Ivybridge

This reasonably long section takes you down Dartmoor's south moor. You follow the old trackbed of a disused railway for much of it so it's easy walking. From Holne and Scoriton, the Two Moors Way follows a track to Chalk Ford on the boundary of the moor. The views back along this track across Dartmoor to South Devon are superb.

At Chalk Ford, you climb over domed moorland and drop down to Huntingdon Warren Cross. Note the Avon Reservoir to the south. From Huntingdon Warren Cross, head for the clapper bridge that spans the River Avon. Yomp up the steep hill to the plateau. You'll see Red Lake China Clay Works and the start/end of the Red Lake Railway.

Follow the railway south. It goes on and on until you come to a big stone with the Two Moors Way waymarker. Descend to an old track and the southern border of Dartmoor National Park. You're at the edge of Ivybridge.

The fourth section is complete.

Ivybridge is the biggest destination on the Two Moors Way in Dartmoor. There are plenty of shops, pubs and places to stay. We'd recommend continuing on the Erme-Plym Trail to Wembury which is the southern end of the Coast to Coast Path.