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An Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty that forms a tranquil, beautiful, and relatively isolated landscape on the Devon and Somerset border


Walking & Cycling
Hembury Fort
The Blackdown Hills are a range of hills along the Somerset and Devon border, which were designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) in 1991.
Steep ridges, high plateaux, valleys and springs create a stunning mosaic of countryside dotted with farms, villages and ancient forts. This is wonderful countryside for walking and cycling, with an extraordinary variety of flora and fauna to discover.
The Blackdown HillsĀ are renowned for their community of high quality food producers, and tracking some of these down to sample their delicious produce is another Blackdown delight.
To the north the land rises steeply in a dramatic wooded scarp, while to the south it forms a plateau, deeply dissected by valleys. On top of the plateau lie open windswept spaces, while in the valleys picturesque chertstone, cob, and thatched buildings cluster in villages and hamlets, surrounded by a patchwork of small enclosed fields, and accessed down narrow winding lanes with tall hedgerows.
Another favourite Blackdown Hills' beauty spot is Iron Age Hembury Fort surrounded by great earthwork ramparts. Hembury's massive beeches with gnarled twisting roots preside over well worn tracks leading to the summit, which in late spring is carpeted with a sea of bluebells.

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