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“A lovely house not always open to the public”

Hartland Abbey & Gardens
Ranked #9 of 38 things to do in Bideford
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Only one mile from Hartland Quay, Hartland Abbey lies across a narrow, sheltered valley which winds its way to the spectacular Atlantic Coast. Within a designated ‘Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty’ visitors may wander around the beautiful gardens and grounds which lead to the rocky cove. Peacocks and guinea fowl roam at will, whilst donkeys and Black Welsh Mountain sheep graze the Old Deer Park.Hartland Abbey is the lived-in family home of the Stucley family. Although it was built in the 12th century, remaining as a monastery for 400 years and passing through the female line three times, it has never been sold. Consequently, it contains collections of pictures, furniture and porcelain which have accumulated over many generations. The story of the Abbey mirrors local and national history at every turn. It has a friendly and lived-in atmosphere, so often absent in many of our nation’s historic houses, a point continually remarked upon by those who visit us.
Reviewed May 7, 2013

This house is lived in so has limited opening but is definitely worth a visit.
Its in a beautiful location and the grounds are lovely. You can walk down to the beach but it is stony when you get there. It was a fabulous sunny day when we visited and we sat for sometime watching the waves and sea on the cliff top. The bluebells and primroses were all out in the woods. Dont forget to walk up to the walled garden which is about a 10 minute walk from the main house but is definitely worth the trip.
We also enjoyed a lovely cream tea here all cakes homemade, yum, yum.

Thank Tangoj63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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195 - 199 of 229 reviews

Reviewed May 7, 2013

Wonderful day out. My Husband and I enjoyed the most beautiful scenic walk through the Bluebells down to Hartland Point to see the most unusual and impressive rock formations. Followed by Cream Teas in Hartland Abbey Tea Room - absolutely delicious and very reasonably priced. The afternoon tour around the Abbey was very informative all members of staff so very friendly and knowledgeable. Definitely recommend as a good day out for all the family.

1  Thank Lorna H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 3, 2013

Shame that because of the cold weather the bluebells could have been better but an enjoyable morning. Nice cup of tea. Very dog friendly but no dog water at the cafe. Noticed that wheel chair users were having difficulty on the bluebell paths.

Thank MaryEdwards
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 1, 2013

We visited Hartland Abbey with our two dogs (it is very dog friendly) and had a wonderful time. There is a relaxing walk of about a mile along a well maintained path to the rugged coastline. It took you through the field with the black sheep, their lambs, donkeys and peacocks and on to the woods that were carpeted with bluebells, primroses and other spring flowers. On the way back we visited the gazebo with it's stunning views and the summerhouse where the only noise was bird song. We then made our way to the walled garden which was very sheltered, tranquil and full of a variety of interesting plants. We walked back to the house along Ladies Walk where rhododendrons and azaleas were flowering. We could not resist a visit to the tea rooms which we were glad we did not miss out on, the food was delicious! Everybody we met was very pleasant and friendly. We enjoyed our visit so much that we bought a season ticket so that we could see Hartland Abbey through all the seasons.

1  Thank Angela S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 29, 2013

I took my parents here on Sunday and had a really lovely day!
In the morning we walked down to the beach which was just the right the distance. Then we had a very interesting look around the house, lots of wonderful paintings and so nice to see that it is still lived in by the family. My mum has a bad knee but we managed the stairs and the staff were all very patient and helpful.
It was not the warmest of days but by far the warmest place was the tea room. Had to queue a while but obviously to be expected on such a busy day (don't think it would usually be like that) but you could see all the staff were trying their hardest under a lot of pressure. The food! There was so much choice for cake (We had a slice of Victoria Sponge which was delicious!) and my mum had homemade soup which she said was lovely - would say the prices were on a par with all those types of places.
Will return soon for a walk around the gardens and some afternoon tea!
Thank you everyone :)

1  Thank Kirsty T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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