St George’s Day brought fantastic weather to Dartmoor and also saw the return of the Haytor Hoppa bus service – operating from Newton Abbot via Bovey Tracey to Haytor, Widecombe, Manaton and back to Bovey Tracey and Newton Abbot.
Taking advantage of the weather, the fantastic value (£2.50 for an all day hop on/hop off ticket to Bovey Tracey or £5 to Newton Abbot) and an excuse to combine shopping, walking and sightseeing I set off to catch the first service on Saturday from Becky Falls.
Riding over Trendlebere, my daughter and I enjoyed the fantastic vistas across Dartmoor to the coast and then after some shopping in Bovey Tracey, we boarded the 12:05 back up to Dartmoor. We managed to grab the last two seats on the bus and with Bugsy (the dog – and only an additional 25p!) by our feet listened to the excited chatter as people enjoyed the journey up to Haytor. More people on board but this time standing, we headed to Widecombe where most of the bus ‘hopped’ off to enjoy some sightseeing a spot of lunch at one of the cafes or pubs and then a stroll before catching the later Hoppa.
For us, we enjoyed the journey as far as Hound Tor before taking a great walk back to a well deserved drink at the Kestor in Manaton. Then just after 3pm, we saw some of the ‘crew’ who had got off at Widecombe now get off at Manaton to enjoy a drink and then a gentle walk in the afternoon before either getting the last bus home or walking all the way back down the hill to Bovey Tracey.
A glorious way to spend a Saturday…I would recommend that you give it a go next Saturday!