A Guide to the Unique Village of Clovelly

Clovelly is a beautifully unique village situated along the stunning North Devon coast. It is rare that you will come across a village quite as special as Clovelly. With its car free streets and tranquil atmosphere, the North Devon village offers a true sense of escapism. Steeped in history and full of places to explore, take a look at what you can do around the picturesque fishing village…

Maritime Festival. Ellie Jarvis

Exploring Clovelly
Wind your way through Clovelly’s cobbled streets and you will come across plenty to explore. To fully experience all the village has to offer, take the Clovelly Guided Tour. This tour has been awarded a Trip Advisor 2015 Certificate of Excellence and is a fantastic way to discover Clovelly’s history and traditions. If you don’t take the tour, wander down the main Clovelly Street (known as ‘up-a-long’ and ‘down a long’) to the beautiful historic harbour, where you can enjoy picturesque seaside views full of small fishing boats. Hobby Drive is a pretty cliff top walk with far reaching views of Bideford Bay and the Clovelly harbour. In the other direction, you can follow a path to Hartland Point, which has a stunning view over Mouth Mill Cove. You can find a whole host of information upon arrival at the Clovelly Visitor Centre situated at the top of the village.

History and DonkeysDonkeys in Clovelly
The village was once owned by the Queen of England and has long been in private ownership which has helped to preserve the village’s beautiful surroundings. As the village is rather steep and car free, man powered sledges transport all goods down to the village. Traditionally, donkeys were used for transport of this nature. Now still a main part of the village’s heritage, the friendly donkeys provide rides to children in the summer and can be found around the village. Clovelly’s fishing heritage still rings strong and fresh local catch can be found and enjoyed at the Red Lion on the Quay. You can also enjoy annual maritime events here, such as the Herring Festival.

Places to Eat and StayClovelly quay and Red Lion inn
Clovelly has two old inns and cosy B&B’s where you can enjoy a relaxing stay. The two inns offer delicious, locally produced pub fayre and also a place to rest your head after a day of exploring. The New inn is located in the heart of the village and the Red Lion hotel stands alongside the peaceful harbour.

Clovelly LightsClovelly Christmas Lights
Christmas is a magical time of year (and it is even more magical in Clovelly!). When the Clovelly Christmas lights are switched on, it is a fantastic sight to behold and attracts many visitors to the village. A brass band leads the procession to the harbour where visitors can eat, drink and be merry. The event is held every year in aid of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.

Shopping in Clovelly & Clovelly boats
Things To Do

From silk craft courses to calming quay side treatments, Clovelly has a number of specialist things to do, such as craft activities, boat trips, trips to Lundy Island and angling. In the Visitor Centre you can find a range of shops selling delicious fudge, gifts and books. The Quay shop and the Seafood shop at the harbour sell a selection of warming pasties and succulent seafood. You can also find great gifts from the Donkey shop and fantastic local art from The Gallery.  Find out more about shopping in Clovelly.

Annual Events
For dates and details, visit www.clovelly.co.uk.

  • February
  • June:
    Seaweed Festival
  • July:
    Maritime Festival
    Woolsery Agricultural Show
  • August:      
    Lifeboat Weekend
    Gig Regatta
  • September:  
    Lobster and Crab Feast
  • November:  
    Herring Festival
  • December: 
    Christmas Lights

Clovelly Weddings
Looking for the perfect location for your wedding? Clovelly offers memorably beautiful locations with picture perfect views and a great selection of venues to choose from. Find out more about Clovelly Weddings.

Getting to the Village


To preserve the village, there is a small admission fee to enter the village. This will cover an audio-visual programme introducing you to Clovelly’s fascinating history, entrance to two museums – the Kingsley Museum and the Fisherman’s Cottage, entrance to Clovelly Court Gardens and parking.  From Easter to October, a Land rover service is available to take you back to the top of the village after a day of exploring.