After our night in the wilderness, we jumped back in the car and headed down from Exmoor to Padstow in Cornwall via North Devon. We were both a little bit tired this day and sadly the weather wasn’t brilliant, so we found the drive a particularly uninspiring one – we’ve now decided the road we took, the A39, was the most boring road of the trip! I feel like if the weather hadn’t been so foggy, it would have been a lovely drive, as the first part of it was quite spectacular along the cliff edges of the coast and the moorland, but sadly we didn’t see a lot of that!
Our first stop of the day was at the villages of Lynton and Lynmouth – “where Exmoor meets the sea”. This was really pretty and we did consider staying a bit longer to wander some more and to explore the gorge, but we knew we had quite a long, windy journey ahead so we snapped some pictures and headed onwards. It was a steep drive in and out of the villages and we weren’t surprised to read about the awful flood that had devastated the area in a storm as it was so low lying with the river down to the sea.
After leaving Lynton and Lynmouth, we drove on for quite a long time – it was one of those drives where you went up and down and round every corner in the world but didn’t really seem to get anywhere! When we saw a sign for the Lynton & Barnstaple Railway and realised it was a steam train, Ben exclaimed: “Choo CHOO!” (Can you tell we were getting bored?!), so we pulled off the road to check it out.
We were lucky as just as we pulled up, the steam train pulled into the station. We started snapping pictures then realised it was really cheap to ride (the page says £7.50 per person, but I thought it was cheaper when we stopped there, who knows!), so we bought ourselves some tickets and hopped on board.
The railway is currently in the process of being rebuilt slowly after being closed down and taken apart in 1935 and being bought again by the current owners in 1995. So far, the track only goes 1 mile, between Woody Bay Station where we got on to Killington Lane Halt, but they’re hoping to extend it the full distance between Lynton and Barnstaple in future.
As you can probably see, I ended up having to wear the same outfit as the day before (shock, horror!) because we didn’t want to take excess clothes down to the Shepherd’s Hut with us in the Gator, so only clean underwear, socks and pyjamas came with us! And no make up for the day either as I didn’t want to carry that down too!
As I mentioned before, we found the A39 road particularly uninspiring to drive on the rest of our journey, especially as it was really foggy and windy – you can probably see from the railway photos how hazy and dreary the weather was! Unfortunately, it also meant the drive was quite dangerous and took a lot of brainpower to drive, meaning we skipped out on our plan of visiting Tintagel (sadly, as it looked like a beautiful place to visit!) and went straight to Padstow as we were both exhausted. It’s always better to rest than to try to keep driving as this infographic provided by Chill who provide cheap car insurance reminded me – it shows the most dangerous driving roads in Ireland – considering that’s another road trip we’re hoping to do in future, I think it’s one to pay attention to!
Now make sure to check back in for our next road trip instalment, including dining and staying at Rick Stein’s restaurant in Padstow!