This family home and great estate is the crowning jewel in the National Trust’s collection of beautiful homes. The house was given to the trust by Sir Richard Acland in 1944 for his political beliefs, and since then it has been lovingly restored and kept to the highest standard. The glorious gardens are extensive, and a whole day wandering the grounds and house just aren’t enough to see all that there is to see. Don’t forget the café, which serves excellent cake.
Powderham is an enchanting place and was built all the way back between 1390 and 1490. It was severely damaged throughout the civil war, however, but the house was restored by a rebuilding programme which ran all the way through to the 19th century. The fortified mansion has a Georgian interior and is surrounded by woodland, a deer park and formal gardens.
High in the hills in Axminster, hidden down a bumpy track, is River Cottage HQ. It’s aesthetics are everything we think of when we think of English country; painted white with a thatched roof, a garden kitchen out front and miles and miles of green and rolling hills for miles around. A visit here is idyllic and usually filled with outstanding grub.
Also known as Lawrence Castle, this 26-metre high castle sits on a high knoll with panoramic views of the Exe Valley and Devon countryside. The castle sits upon five acres of woodland, just six miles out of Exeter and is triangular, with just three turrets. This is one of Devon’s finest wedding venues, and the top floor is a self-contained holiday apartment.
Built over 600 years ago, this picturesque castle has guarded the entrance to the Dart Estuary for centuries. Climb to the top of the gun tower, see it perfectly reflected in the river from a boat or get lost through the mazes of the old Victorian battery.
A traditional farming estate in the heart of the Devonshire countryside, this family home is a place of real tranquility and calm. The Fursdon family have lived here for over 750 years, and opened the house, tearoom and gardens to the public on certain days from Easter to the end of September. Fursdon is charming, and any visit will end in total relaxation.
A beautiful, fortified manor with turrets and parapets galore lies in a sheltered valley setting surrounded by woodland and orchards. Built in the 12th century, the castle walls are 3 feet thick and made of local sandstone. There has been extensive work done on the house to repair it back to its former, glorious self, but a visit to Compton Castle is an enchanting one, sure to whisk you back in time.