South Molton, Exmoor National Park

South Molton, Exmoor National Park
  • Exmoor gateway town with roads leading to Simonsbath and Withypool
  • Visit the superb South Molton Quince Honey Farm
  • Shop at South Molton Country Pannier Market
  • Discover more about the local area at South Molton Museum. Explore the South Molton Heritage Trail
  • Enjoy local food and drink in one of the towns cafes and pubs
  • Main photo: South Molton Quince Honey Farm


Where is South Molton relative to Exmoor National Park?

The A361 is the main road linking the M5 with North Devon. It runs below Exmoor National Park. South Molton is an Exmoor gateway town by the A361 near the south western border of Exmoor National Park.

It's a great area in which to base yourself to explore Exmoor National Park, North Devon, Mid Devon and the northern section of Dartmoor National Park.


Directions to South Molton

Follow the A361 for South Molton.

We've positioned South Molton on Google maps. Zoom in on the 'Satellite' setting to see its location.


Parking at South Molton

There's a big car park in the centre of town.


Why holiday or weekend break in the South Molton area?

To help you chose the South Molton area, we've listed some of the local attractions below.


South Molton Quince Honey Farm

Superb visitor attraction near the south western border of Exmoor National Park.

South Molton Quince Honey Farm used to be located in South Molton but moved to a much bigger and more easily accessible site where the A361 meets the B3226 and A399.

Includes beautiful gardens, a beekeeping tractor tour, farm shop, restaurant, adventure park, indoor play area and lots of bees!


South Molton Museum and Heritage Trail

Visit South Molton Museum at the South Molton Country Pannier Market building.

'South Molton has a rich, well-documented and largely agricultural history, from its mention in the Domesday Book of 1086 as the 'Manor of Sud Moltona', through the rising of Penruddock, the Royalist rebel in 1655 to its present existence as a thriving market town.

South Molton Museum is a vibrant, growing celebration of the town's heritage, dedicated to making the collections relevant to everyone, with ever changing exhibitions, story-telling and craft events, visits to schools and retirement homes with 'handling collections', South Molton Musuem also boasts many fascinating and unique exhibits, including one of the oldest fire engines in England, and Town Charters signed by Elizabeth the First and Charles the Second respectively. Pay us a visit and you will be repaid one hundredfold, with a captivating insight into the human development of the town.' (Source: information board on site) 

Follow the South Molton Heritage Trail.

Head for the big car park and take a photo of the Heritage Trail information board before exploring the town.

'South Molton is named after the river [sic] Mole on which it is sited. Originally a Saxon settlement, by Medieval times it had become a thriving market town. England produced the finest wool in Europe at this time and South Molton became one of the foremost wool producing towns for the next 5 centuries, with spinners and weavers working from almost every little cottage.

This prosperity has endowed the town with a wealth of fine historic buildings; such that, much of the town is now preserved as a conservation area. We hope this trail will give a small insight into our town's historic past. The route is not strenuous and should take approximately 2 hours.' (Source: infromation board on site)


South Molton Country Pannier Market

If you enjoy shopping, head for South Molton Country Pannier Market. This local market runs Thursday and Saturdays.


South Molton pubs, cafes and restaurants

The town is packed with places to eat and drink.  Pubs, cafes and restaurants line Broad Street, East Street, King Street and South Street. It's a compact place so have a wander and take your pick.


Rock and Rapid Adventures

Activities centre just north of South Molton on the north side of the A361. Includes a climbing wall, kids' bouldering area, low ropes course and abseiling platform. 

'Specialist providers of an exciting range of outdoor activities, courses and expeditions in the UK and overseas.' (Source: Rock and Rapid Adventures website)


Withypool and Tarr Steps

A road climbs from South Molton to the village Withypool in the central section of Exmoor National Park.

Visit the famous Westcountry clapper bridge Tarr Steps. It's in a glorious setting. Particularly beautiful in autumn when the leaves turn in the Barle River Valley. The bridge is owned by Exmoor National Park Authority and is within the Tarr Steps Woodland National Nature Reserve. Top place. There's a big car parking area from which you walk down to the bridge.


Exford and Dunkery Beacon

Continue to Exford from Withypool and walk to Exmoor's highest point at Dunkery Beacon. The views are immense. On a clear day, you'll see Dartmoor National Park to the south and Brecon Beacons National Park to the north. Bodmin Moor is the south west and the high ground of Exmoor National Path extends west. Highly recommended.


Simonsbath and Exmoor's high moor

Alternatively, drive to Simonsbath and walk to Exmoor's wildest and most remote area around Exe Head and The Chains. 


Exmoor International Dark Sky Reserve

Exmoor was Europe's first International Dark Sky Reserve. Owing to the low levels of light pollution, you'll be able to see thousands more stars with the naked eye than you would in an urban area.

Drive to Exmoor's high moor to experience this.


Exmoor Zoo and Arlington Court (National Trust)

Follow the A399 north west of South Molton and you come to the superb Exmoor Zoo located near the western border of Exmoor National Park.

Arlington Court (National Trust) is nearby.


Combe Martin and Lynmouth/Lynton

You can then continue north to Combe Martin or north east to Lynmouth and Lynton. The coastline between these is exceptional. The Valley of Rocks is essential visiting when on holiday in Exmoor.


North Devon

South Molton is a gateway town to Exmoor and North Devon. Visit some of the UK's best beaches at Saunton Sands, Croyde Beach, Putsborough Beach and Woolacombe Beach.


Mid Devon

Visit RHS Garden Rosemoor by Great Torrington.

We'd recommend exploring Tiverton as well. Knightshayes (National Trust) is in the Tiverton area.


Dartmoor National Park

Dartmoor National Park is south of South Molton.

Head to Okehampton and then Okehampton Camp to walk to the top of High Willhays and Yes Tor which are the only two mountains in southern England and the highest points in the National Park.

We'd also recommend walking to Dartmoor's high moor from Belstone village. You can experience Dartmoor's famous granite tors by following Belstone Ridge to Oke Tor and then Steeperton Tor.

See our sister site 'Holiday in Dartmoor' for more information.