Barnstaple is the key administrative centre for north Devon. It is situated on the River Taw, about seven miles (11 kms) from the river mouth. Current town population is around 25,500.
Barnstaple’s location on the main transport routes to this region makes it an important tourist hub. It is an ancient and historic town with a delightful mix of old buildings.
Vibrant shopping centre and markets
The shopping and commercial centre goes well with the historic town centre, especially since the opening of the road bypass taking traffic away from the centre of the town.
The Square has been refurbished and is now a vibrant shopping and commercial centre. There is a good selection of cafes, restaurants and pubs where you can relax and enjoy an excellent choice of cuisine.
Ever since Saxon times Barnstaple has been the major market for north Devon. In 1855 a permanent Pannier Market hall was built. It stretches the length of Butchers Row and is a paradise for lovers of local markets.
Market days are
Monday - Crafts and General (April to December),
Tuesday - General and Produce (all year),
Wednesday - Arts Collectables and Books (all year),
Thursday - Crafts and General (all year),
Friday - General and Produce (all year) and
Saturday - General and Produce (all year).
Barnstaple is the gateway to Exmoor Forest, Ilfracombe and, Lundy Island, to the north, and Clovelly Village, Westward Ho!, Hartland Peninsula, Morwenstow and Bude to the south.
Barnstaple Tourist Information Centre
Barnstaple TIC is situated in The Square Barnstaple.
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- By Mainline Rail from London
Take the about hourly First Great Western service from London Paddington station to Exeter St David’s station, a journey time of about two hours. Then change to the First Great Western service to Barnstaple with journey time of just over an hour.
There is around 20 minutes wait time at Exeter St David’s station. For train timetables, fares and ticketing go to Web: National Rail Enquiries External Link
- By Coach from London
National Express Coach service connects London Victoria coach station with Barnstaple and towns to the south. For service times, costs and ticketing go to Web: National Express External Link
- By Road
The A361 links Barnstaple with the M5 motorway at Junction 27 near Tiverton. The M5 joins the M4 from London and the West near Bristol.
The A377 links Barnstaple to Exeter, Torquay and Plymouth areas on the East Coast and from Exeter eastwards to Poole, Southampton and onwards towards the County of Kent.
Google Maps - Barnstaple