Hartland Abbey

North Devon

History flows through the walls of this enchanting, warm-grey manor house. Built in the 12th century, it was a monastery until Henry VIII grabbed it in the Dissolution; he then gave it to the sergeant of his wine cellar. Today its sumptuous interiors house vivid murals, the ornate Alhambra Passage and a Regency library designed in the Strawberry Hill Gothic style.

It's 5 miles west of Clovelly, off the A39 between Hartland and Hartland Quay.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby North Devon attractions

1. Hartland Point

1.06 MILES

The coast around Hartland Point offers superb hiking. Tucked just under the point is the short white column of a lighthouse, which was built in 1874. You…

2. Shipwreck Museum

1.11 MILES

Artefacts and powerful photographs evoke some of the hundreds of vessels that have foundered on Hartland's jagged shore.

3. Hartland Quay

1.14 MILES

The towering cliffs at the 16th-century Hartland Quay are among the most spectacular in the region – the peninsula rises 350ft above sea level. Russet…

4. Clovelly Historic Village

4.62 MILES

Clovelly is privately owned, and admission is charged at the hilltop visitor centre. The village's cobbled streets are so steep that cars can't cope, so…

5. Crooklets

11.29 MILES

Slightly to the north of the town centre, this is a busy town beach backed by a huge car park. It's popular with families, beach bums and surfers alike,…

6. Bude Sea Pool

11.51 MILES

Built in the 1930s, this handsome seawater pool sits behind Summerleaze beach to provide a safe place for sea swimming, without the danger of tides or…

7. Summerleaze

11.62 MILES

Bude's main family beach is a classic bucket-and-spade affair, with its proximity to town ensuring it's awash with windbreaks in summer. It's also home to…

8. Bude Castle

11.71 MILES

Housed in a peculiar folly behind Summerleaze beach, Bude Castle was built by local inventor Sir Goldsworthy Gurney, whose creations included theatrical…