By: Blonde Two
As you know, we Blondes are partial to camping of all kinds. Wild camping, campsite camping, camping in a van, overseas camping, garden camping, you name it, we will camp anywhere. Our absolutely favourite place to do any sort of camping is Dartmoor, which perhaps makes it very strange that, until recently, neither of us had tried out the more salubrious side of Dartmoor camping by staying on some of its ‘posher’ campsites (you know the kind, they have loos, toilet paper, little shops and tasty things to nibble in the morning). Seeing as camping in a campervan on Dartmoor is not allowed, I thought my recent ‘working from the camper van’ trip’ gave me an excellent excuse to try out a couple of Dartmoor campsites near to Tavistock… and I am very glad that I did!
Harford Bridge Campsite
Harford Bridge Campsite not only has a bridge, but it also has a whole river. Well, maybe not a whole river but certainly a rather lovely section of the Tamar. After a busy day walking, writing and taking photos around the moor, I arrived late at Harford Bridge, paid online (plenty of 4G and campsite WiFi) and found my own way down the river camping field. I was the only one there, which turned out to be because that field is closed for the winter months so that it can be used for grazing. I didn’t find this out until the next morning when I met the warden and his wife but they were very friendly and forgave me my mistake. After an explore, some sunset photos, a play down on the river beach and a cheeky beer, I had a fabulous night listening to the sound of the river rushing past and jumping occasionally to the sound of acorns dropping onto the van roof… those pesky squirrels! Harford Bridge Campsite is just out of Tavistock off the A386 and offers easy access to Dartmoor via lanes for walking or via Pork Hill in a vehicle. My night on a non-electric pitch cost me £18 and I was pleased to hear that the park offers discounts to Duke of Edinburgh’s Award participants. I am looking forward to returning in the spring and hopefully enjoying a river swim. This campsite would definitely be a great option for anyone with a family.
Langstone Manor Campsite
I had a really warm welcome at Langstone Manor campsite and, after requesting a view of what promised to be another stunning Dartmoor sunset, I was shown a couple of lovely spots, choosing the one nearest to the rather impressive loo block. Both of the campsites I visited had excellent and very clean facilities and what Langstone Manor lacked in riverside camping, it made up for with proximity to the moor and peace and quiet. I slept really well here too and got to enjoy both a sunset and sunrise, the latter just before tucking into a pain au chocolat I had ordered from the shop the night before. I had time for a good explore of the campsite before it got dark and particularly liked the look of the camping pods (if you remember I stayed in one of these at YHA New Forest in January). Langstone Manor campsite is divided into small sections, giving a feeling of exclusivity and safety. This site has a back pedestrian gate that takes you onto the lane and then almost immediately onto Dartmoor near Pew Tor. For those looking for walking from their pitch, this has to be a great option and was £18 for my non-electric pitch.
If you fancy a ‘less than wild’ camping experience and are looking for campsites or any kind of accommodation on Dartmoor, we thoroughly recommend starting your search on the Visit Dartmoor website. We work closely with the Visit Dartmoor team and, as well as where to stay, you will also find information about what to do during your time on our favourite moor.