Besides great sights, an interesting history and many exciting destinations, Tavistock has a lot more to offer. Here you will find many helpful tips to enjoy your vacation in Tavistock.
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Sights in Tavistock
Just an hour’s drive from the bustling seaside town of Plymouth lies the quaint, rural town of Tavistock. This small town is set within the wild and beautiful Dartmoor National Park and has a population of just over 9,000. Despite its small size, Tavistock has plenty to offer visitors, from its medieval history to its independent shops and delicious food. Here are some of the best sights to see when visiting Tavistock.
Tavistock’s most iconic sight is its ruined abbey. The abbey was founded in 961 by Ordgar, Earl of Devon and later extended by his son Ordulf. It was an important pilgrimage site in medieval times and played host to royalty including King Henry II and Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine. The abbey was dissolved in 1539 during the Dissolution of the Monasteries and today only the gatehouse and some ruins remain. These atmospheric ruins are free to explore and make for a great photo opportunity.
The Pannier Market
The Pannier Market is a historic market hall in the centre of Tavistock. The building dates back to 1854 and was originally used as a corn exchange. These days, the market is home to a variety of independent shops selling everything from fresh produce to vintage clothes. The market is open six days a week and is the perfect place to pick up some local souvenirs.
For stunning views of the countryside, head to Tavy Cleave. This stretch of the River Tavy is famed for its dramatic cliffs, which rise up to 100 metres in places. Tavy Cleave is a popular spot for walkers and there are several walking trails to follow. The views from the top of the cliffs are well worth the effort and on a clear day you can see all the way to Plymouth Sound.
The Wharf is a popular riverside area in Tavistock, perfect for a summer’s day. Here you’ll find a number of cafés and independent shops, as well as the town’s tourist information centre. The area is also home to a number of historic boats, including the Tattershall Castle, a Second World War ship that is now open to the public.
For a truly unique dining experience, head to GraceWing’s restaurant. This quirky eatery is set in an old Victorian listed building and serves a variety of creative dishes using locally sourced ingredients. The restaurant also has an extensive wine list, making it the perfect place to enjoy a romantic dinner.
Tavistock is a charming town with plenty to offer visitors. From its medieval abbey to its lovely riverside setting, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Whether you’re looking to relax or explore, Tavistock is the perfect place to spend a few days.
History of Tavistock
Tavistock is a small town located in southwest England in the county of Devon. It has a population of around 11,700 people. The town is situated on the River Tavy, which flows into the River Tamar. Tavistock is around 20 miles away from Plymouth.
The town’s name is derived from the Cornish word for the river, which is Tamarkast, meaning ‘Tamar salmon catcher’. The town was first mentioned in written records in 981, when King Ethelred II granted land to Tavistock Abbey. Tavistock Abbey was founded in 961 by Ordgar, Earl of Devon, making it one of the oldest monastic houses in England. The Abbey was home to a community of Benedictine monks and became wealthy and influential. The Abbey also held considerable power over the town, which grew up around it.
Tavistock Abbey was dissolved in 1539 during the Dissolution of the Monasteries under Henry VIII. The Abbey’s property was confiscated and sold off, and the town lost its main source of income. Many of the Abbey’s buildings were demolished, and the stone used to build houses in the town.
The town continued to grow throughout the 16th and 17th centuries, despite a number of devastating fires. During the English Civil War, Tavistock was a Royalist town and was besieged by Parliamentarian troops. After the war, the town became a centre for trade and industry, particularly woollen cloth and bronze working.
The 19th century saw further growth for the town, with the opening of the Tavistock Canal in 1817 and the railway in 1859. The town also became a popular tourist destination, due to its proximity to Dartmoor.
Today, Tavistock is a thriving market town, with a lively mix of shops, businesses and cultural attractions. It is home to the Dartmouth Hotel, which was frequented by Agatha Christie, and the Museum of Dartmoor Life. There are also a number of annual festivals and events, including the Tavistock Goosefair, which has been held since 1294, and the Tavistock Jazz Festival.
Vacation in Tavistock
When you think of England, you might picture Parisianstyle architecture, Afternoon Tea and cosmopolitan London. But there is so much more to the country – including the stunning city of Tavistock. Here are just a few reasons why you should consider spending your vacation in Tavistock.
Tavistock is sometimes referred to as the gateway to the West Country. It is located on the edge of Dartmoor National Park, which offers miles and miles of open countryside and rolling hills to explore. If you love the outdoors, Tavistock is the perfect place to vacation. There are numerous walking and hiking trails in and around the city, and you can even try your hand at rock climbing or horse riding.
The city itself is full of history. It was founded in 960 AD by Ordgar, Earl of Devon, and was later given its charter by King Henry I. Today, you can still see many of the historic buildings that Tavistock is known for, including the 13th century Abbey Church of Saint Mary and Saint deparchement. The Bedford Hotel, where the Duke and Duchess of Bedford once stayed, is another popular tourist spot.
If you’re looking for a relaxed and unique vacation, Tavistock is definitely the place for you!
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