The Exceptional Tamar Valley

“Famous for its coast and beaches, Cornwall has so much more to offer, different to anywhere else in the world”. Rick Stein

The exceptional Tamar Valley is unique. It is a river valley reaching from Bodmin Moor to Dartmoor, and from East Cornwall to West Devon. An area rich in beauty and history.

  • Find Tudor houses, stunning gardens, ancient mines, and rivers to explore and fish.
  • An Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Much of the area forms the Cornish Mining World Heritage Site.
  • The Tamar is one of the most important features of southwest England, rising as a tiny spring just four miles from Bude. The river marks the border between the peoples of Devon and Cornwall. Although the river marks the border, nonetheless it belongs to Cornwall, if you are on or in the river, you are still in Cornwall until you reach the Devon bank.
  • At some sixty miles long, the river has many tributaries including the Carey, Thrushel, Inny, Ottery, Claw, Lyd, Kensey, Deer, and of course, the Tavy and Lynher.
  • For anglers, the Tamar is exceptional as the best salmon and sea trout rivers in England.
  • Cornwall Wildlife trust have reintroduced Ospreys into the Valley, these magnificent birds can occasionally be seen fishing along the Tavy and Tamar.
  • The Tamar Valley is exceptional as a veritable foodie paradise, using superb local ingredients. From amazing cheeses and unique local fruit and juices, to traditionally reared poultry, beef, venison, and lamb from small local farms.

Top Tip: You can fish from the riverbank at Primrose Cottage.

This rich gem situated deep within the Tamar Valley, has a long and prestigious history. Cotehele is a fine Tudor house.

  • See superb collections, beautiful gardens, a quay and estate woodlands, a mill and pottery. This is the closest National Trust property.
  • It is considered one of the least-altered houses of the period in the United Kingdom.
  • The house was mainly built c1485-1627 and was a home of the Edgcumbe family for centuries.
  • Allow plenty of time to take in its rich architecture, decoration, furniture and furnishings, as well as the formal gardens and woodland walks. Long views and waterside areas are a treat.
  • Cotehele Quay is the home of the restored Tamar sailing barge Shamrock.
  • Take a Boat trip! Departing from the quay, explore the beauty of the River Tamar. Available on certain days of the year.

For more information look at the blog:

One of the last great railway viaducts – Calstock

  • Calstock is situated on the River Tamar several miles east of Callington and 12 miles upstream from Plymouth in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
  • A pretty village with cottages lining the narrow streets as they climb up the steep bank of the Tamar.
  • Dominated by the magnificent railway viaduct which was built in 1907. Standing at 120 feet tall with 12 sixty-foot arches, the viaduct carries the Tamar Valley railway which runs from Plymouth to Gunnislake.
  • Now a sleepy backwater Calstock has a long history as an industrial post. In Roman times it was already settled and possibly a tin trading post and from Saxon times it was a port.
  • Calstock’s heyday was in the 19th century when it was a booming mining town with a population of around 7,000.


A wild rugged granite hilltop – Kitt Hill County Park

  • Kitt Hill County Park is famous for fine views and fascinating history covering 400 acres.
  • At the highest point in the Tamar Valley, it forms a dominating feature to be seen for miles around offering stunning views over the valley and across to Dartmoor and Bodmin Moor.
  • Lots of opportunities for walking with a network of paths.
  • Rich in archaeology with signs of thousands of years of human activity – from a Neolithic long barrow (approx. 3000BC) to 19th Century mining remains, including the ornate summit chimney stack.

Tavistock stands in the heart of an area of tremendous natural beauty

  • Tavistock – Gateway to Cornwall and West Devon Mining World Heritage sites, is a classic West Country Market Town.
  • Straddling the fast flowing river Tavy, below the western edge of Dartmoor.
  • A UNESCO World Heritage site.
  • Tavistock has plenty to look at and keep you amused. It is also a vibrant and interesting town full of fascinating history. To whet your appetite read our blog.
  • The site of the West Country’s most important Benedictine Abbey and you can still see the scattered remains of the abbey around Tavistock town centre.
  • A unique town, Tavistock has a range of beautiful, local independent shops on its high street offering a truly special shopping, as well as plenty of eating places to suit all tastes!

"Breath-taking natural beauty, history and industrial heritage. Quiet villages, bustling towns, moors, magnificent industrial heritage and quiet country walks can all be found within a few short miles."

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