The building – almost 500 years old and rumoured by locals to be the longest longhouse in Devon – is delightfully quirky, with ancient nooks and spiral staircases offset by sleek urban furniture and contemporary art. The six bedrooms have beamed ceilings, deliciously comfy beds and sheepskin-covered window seats; one has a dreamy double-ended bathtub. Downstairs, Jo’s excellent home cooking is just the ticket after a day's walking, and there's a very cosy bar with an honesty system. Perfect for stressed-out city folk who need a countryside fix; you can even bring your dog.
- Glorious landscapes and views, and plenty to do nearby: moorland walks or bike rides, horse riding, historic houses
- Plus an enormous garden and a cosy lounge with DVDs, for those who want to do nothing at all
- Delicious food, with lots of local treats: Devon sausages at breakfast, wild venison for dinner, meat pies, bio-dynamic wines and local ales
- Book the whole house for a large family or small group getaway, catered or self-catered (a 2-night minimum)
- Surprisingly easy to reach given its remoteness: 20 mins' drive from Exeter (which is 2 hrs by train from London)
- When booking B&B, you'll need to pre-order picnic lunch packs; no lunch is served on the premises
- No TV signal, but there's a flatscreen for watching DVDs
- Over Christmas and New Year, Weeke Barton is only available on a self-catered whole-house basis
- Only Henry's room can be a twin
- The low, beamed ceilings might mean tall guests need to crouch a bit
Best time to go
Our top tips
- B&B/House Rental
- 6 rooms
- Breakfast (+ dinner on request)
- All ages welcome
- Open all year
- Spa Treatments
- Beach Nearby
- Pet Friendly
- Disabled Access
- Car not necessary
- Off-street Parking
- Restaurants Nearby
- Air Conditioning
- Guest Lounge
- Daily Maid Service
- Towels & Bedlinen
- Electric car charger
The five rooms in the main house are accessed via a pair of staircases twisting up from the dining room. All are stylish with pared-down décor, views over hills and valleys, and an eclectic mix of vintage and contemporary furniture. Throws and artwork provide pops of colour, and little details – an embroidered footstool, an owl-shaped lamp – are dotted here and there. We particularly loved the sheepskin-covered window seats in every room; perfect spots for curling up with a book. But best of all was the near-total silence, with nothing but the gentle braying of distant cattle to wake us from our slumber.
On our first visit we were treated to Orla’s Room, a vast space with a double-ended in-room tub and a TV which swivels so you can watch DVDs (there’s no signal) as you snooze or soak. On our return we stayed in Henry’s Room, which has an ancient hearth and double sinks beneath soaring rafters. Almost as large is Avalon’s Room, which has a bath and shower; Otis’ Room and Alfie’s Room are smaller but no less lovely, with ensuite rain showers.
The sixth room, Kota's Room, is a self-contained unit out in the garden. It's quirky and cosy with wonky walls, a wood-burning stove, and a projector with a pull-down screen for watching films in bed. We found the WiFi struggled to stretch this far, so make sure you download your films in advance. The bathroom was particularly indulgent with its free-standing tub, giant ornate mirror, and a disco ball for glitzy bathes! Being out in the garden means you get extra privacy, though be aware that other guests might wander past your door (though blinds stop them from seeing in).
Beds throughout are super-kingsize or kingsize; you also get gorgeous local toiletries and hanging space, plus tea- and coffee-making stations either in the room or on the landing outside.
- Central heating
- Cots Available
- DVD player
- Extra beds
- Family friendly
Jo’s penchant for local, seasonal and organic fare, combined with her deft hand in the kitchen, produces brilliant results. If it’s not homemade then it’s sourced nearby.
Dinner, available on request, is a real treat; choose from a seasonally changing menu. It kicks off with drinks from the honesty bar (sparkling wine from the vineyard next door, Dartmoor gin, local ales) before you move to your dining table, lit by flickering candles, with music playing softly in the background. In summer, you eat outside, at small tables. The food is delicious: we tucked into Dexter beef pie and a fennel salad, followed by damson crumble – perfect comfort food after a day roaming the moor.
Breakfast is similarly hearty. You text your order to Jo 10 mins before you want to eat, then come down to find the dining table stacked with bags of homemade granola, baskets of home-baked bread, local jams and preserves, steaming pots of tea, and cafetières of coffee. Hot dishes are cooked to order – try the carnivore breakfast of succulent sausages and bacon, eggs from a neighbouring farm, and juicy slow-baked tomatoes; there are both veggie and vegan options too.
If renting the whole house, you get use of the beautifully equipped kitchen.
There are plenty of good pubs and restaurants within 15 mins' drive. Our favourite was The Horse in Moretonhampstead, which serves up Mediterranean-inspired grub. We also had great Italian fare at Emilia in Ashburton. Jo recommends The Rugglestone in Widecombe, where outdoor tables line the banks of a burbling stream.
- Coffee / tea making
- Communal dining
- Dinner by arrangement
- Family friendly
- Kids' meals
- Organic produce
- Go walking among Dartmoor’s craggy granite tors and tumbling rivers. Jo and Sam have put together a booklet of tried and tested routes of varying lengths
- Bike hire and horse-riding can be arranged if you’d prefer to explore on two wheels or four legs
- Dartmoor is dotted with Bronze Age sites, including menhirs, stone circles, cairns and huts. Some of the most impressive are Upper Erme, Challacombe, Drizzlecombe, Grimspound and Merrivale, all within an hour's drive
- Or fast-forward a few millennia and explore remnants of the area's fascinating industrial heritage, including the Wheal Betsy engine house, the ruined gunpowder factory at Powdermills, and the ghostly outline of the Haytor granite tramway
- Visit Castle Drogo, 20 minutes away. Designed by Sir Edward Lutyens, it’s perched above the Teign gorge and was the last castle to be built in England
- Head next door to Swanaford Vineyard, where tastings and tours are available, and the sparkling wine is delicious
- Wander along Lydford Gorge (40 minutes away), with its gushing whirlpools and the 30m-high White Lady Waterfall. Lydford village is also worth a stop for its ancient castle and thatched cottages
- Spend a day on the beach. Dawlish Warren (40 minutes away) has sand dunes, safe swimming and traditional seaside cafés, while Exmouth (40 minutes) is great for rock-pooling. Shaldon (30 minutes) is a sweet village with a sheltered lagoon for swimming, while Oddicombe and Babbacome (40 mins), near Torquay, are lovely secluded beaches. Bigbury (45 minutes away) is particularly pretty, too, with a 13th-century pub and sea tractors out to Burgh Island
- In season, Jo and Sam can arrange shooting, fishing and foraging
Activities on site or nearby include:
- Historical sites
- Horse riding
- Mountain biking
- Shopping / markets
- Wine tasting
Weeke Barton's laid-back ambiance makes it ideal for families seeking a stylish country base, or for an extended family gathering if you take the whole house. Children of all ages are welcome; baby cots and extra beds can be added to some rooms for a small supplement, though the steep staircases mean you’ll want to keep an eye on roving toddlers.
There are plenty of attractions nearby to keep little ones amused, and they may even spot a Dartmoor pony on the moors. Some of Devon’s best beaches are within striking distance, too.
Babies (0-1 years), Children (4-12 years)
Family friendly accommodation:
All rooms can accommodate a baby cot or rollaway bed except Alfie and Kota. We recommended larger ones (Henry's Room, Avalon's Room and Orla's Room) as being best for families. Avalon's Room and Orla's Room are the only rooms with bathtubs. Families of four should book Alfie and Otis together, two adjacent rooms.
Jo and Sam can recommend tried and tested babysitters.
Baby monitors work between the bedrooms and the lounge, bar and dining room – you'll need to bring your own.
- Baby cots
- Changing mats
- Booster seat
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
Jo can tailor dishes to young tastebuds by prior arrangement, and will happily prepare simple meals like pasta with tomato sauce. Kids are served at 19:30 with adults and are offered half-portions from the adult menu.
Kids Activities on site:
- Boules pitch
- Children’s DVDs
- Homemade den by the stream
- Craft materials, crayons and pens
Kids Activities nearby:
- Miniature Pony Centre (15 minutes away)
- Castle Drogo (20 minutes away)
- Bellever Woods (20 minutes away) - perfect for picnics and paddling in the river
- Becky Falls (25 minutes away) - woodland park with waterfalls, a picnic area, bouldering and animals
- Dawlish Warren beach (25 minutes away)
- Woodlands (50 minutes away) - a family theme park and indoor playground suitable for all ages, including toddlers
Families Should Know:
All rooms in the house are on the first floor, accessed via steep spiral staircases.
- Airport: 30 minutes (Exeter)
- Hospital: 20 minutes (Exeter)
- Shop: 15 minutes (Moretonhampstead)
Weeke Barton is located 1.5 miles from the village of Dunsford and 7 miles from Moretonhampstead, on the edge of Dartmoor National Park in Devon, southwest England. It’s a 20-minute drive from Exeter and the M5.
Exeter (17 miles / 27km away) is the nearest airport; you can also fly into Bristol (77 miles / 125km away). Both are served by flights from elsewhere in the UK and Europe. If you’re arriving from outside Europe you’ll probably fly into London Heathrow (171 miles / 276km away).
There are frequent trains from Bristol, Birmingham, London Paddington and other towns and cities in the UK to Exeter St David’s, which is a 20-minute drive from Weeke Barton.
The remote setting means you'll need a car to explore. For car hire, see our car rental recommendations.
Detailed directions will be provided when you confirm a booking through i-escape.
- Exeter 27.0 km EXT
- Bristol 125.0 km BRS
- Beach 15.0 km
- Shops 11.0 km
- Restaurant 4.0 km