Welcome to a different world!
Clovelly is a picturesque, historic, fishing village, steeped in maritime atmosphere and history, and was once owned by the Queen of England. This atmosphere is embodied in a traffic-free, cobbled street with flower-strewn cottages, tumbling down a cleft in the 400-foot cliff to the ancient fishing harbour and 14th-century quay bringing glorious views along the way. Just donkeys and sledges move needed supplies to the village.
Once a bustling fishing port, Clovelly was renowned for its herring and mackerel and today for lobster and crab. Although fishing has declined, it is still very much a part of village life. Sustainability is the key watchword.
There are many literary and artistic connections; Charles Kingsley lived here, Charles Dickens wrote about it, William Turner painted it and Rex Whistler featured it in much of his work.
It promises visitors a wonderful half day out, full of memories and staying a night or two is a very good thing to do. You can also book and take a village tour about the village history and traditions.
Clovelly’s two hotels: the 400 year old New Inn, in the heart of the village and the C18th Red Lion on the quay, provide delicious lunches, dinners and Devon cream teas. There is the Quay Shop at the harbour for take-aways to enjoy on the quay while watching the harbour traffic come and go. Boat trips are available to take you along the dramatic coastline.
For those who do not want to walk back up, there is a fare-paying Land Rover service for much of the year to return you to the top of the village. You can also visit Clovelly Court Victorian kitchen gardens and see its splendid herbaceous borders and magnificently restored Victorian glasshouses. It lies adjacent to the C13th parish church of All Saints.
The modest admission charges include parking, a must-see film show of the history of the village, access to craft workshops for silk and pottery, Charles Kingsley and Fisherman’s Cottage museums, seeing the famous donkeys, two welcoming inns, Clovelly Court Gardens at the top of the village and a contribution to the preservation of this very special private estate.
Visit one of our annual festivals such as the “Seaweed Festival” in June, “Maritime Festival” in July, “Lobster and Crab Feast” in September and the “Herring Festival” in November and there’s no extra admission charge.
Clovelly is open all year round, except for Christmas, and Boxing Day (free access). During the summer months, open from 9am to 6pm. For other opening times, please call the Visitor Centre T: 01237 431781 or email: [email protected]
Clovelly lies off the A39 Atlantic Highway, 10 miles west of Bideford.