Devon Days Out Series – Instow and Appledore


An historic fishing village with winding narrow streets and colourful houses, Appledore is full of maritime history and cute pastel houses.

As well as being famous for its seafaring history and local seafood, Appledore has always been historically celebrated for its art and creativity. The town holds regular arts festivals and resident crafts people showcase a wide range of arts and crafts from ceramics, photography, jewellery and furniture among other products which can be picked up at independent stores and regularly held markets. Because of its artistic merits, Appledore is home to a number of popular annual events. The Appledore Book Festival draws visitors from across the country and features talks and activities with a range of acclaimed international authors. If you’re looking for family fun, try the Appledore-Instow Regatta, where you can cheer on the gig boat crews as they race along the quay or try your hand at crabbing and beach tug-of-war competitions! For those looking for a touch of adventure, Appledore is a great place to launch your own seafaring mission. You can find a range of boat and fishing trips, including a ferry across the Instow, head to the quay and follow the signs!


For a fantastic lunch in a special location it has to be the Royal George – set into the sea wall with floor-to-ceiling windows looking out over the estuary. The Yard is a lovely wine bar doing small plates with a fusion twist, or head to Sylvester’s and enjoy a bag of the freshest fish and chips sitting on a bench gazing out across the water.


Instow is a village on the estuary where the rivers Taw and Torridge meet, on the opposite bank to Appledore. There is a small river beach and sand dunes, that home some rare species of orchid including the pyramid orchid. The Tarka Trail passes through Instow, providing an easy means for people to arrive on foot or by bike. This section of the Trail is also part of the South West Coast Path, offering longer walks along the coast. At high tide you can take a ferry across the estuary to Appledore. There is a good selection of eateries along the promenade.


On a sunny day you can’t beat the Glorious Oyster – a seafood shack and beach hut set in the sand dunes serving up alfresco light bites and fresh oysters – it has a licensed bar and often has live music playing in the summer evenings. John’s deli do amazing crab sandwiches, and a Devonshire clotted cream ice-cream from the Hockings van on the beach is also a must.

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