A top wildlife spot, with exceptional walks through woodland and alongside a classic Devon river.

Please note, the Halsdon bird hide is closed until further notice due to storm damage. 


This is many people’s favourite Devon Wildlife Trust nature reserve and it’s easy to see why!


Take our video tour here

Watch this short film guide to Halsdon in the company of wildlife expert and TV presenter Mike Dilger.



Wander through trees to the river

Waymarked walks weave down through woodland leading you to the banks and water meadows of the River Torridge. Along the way the sounds of birdsong give way to the rush of the river.


In summer the Torridge is the place to see sand martins and kingfishers. In winter look for ducks including goosanders as they dive beneath the water’s surface to catch fish. All year round you have a chance of seeing otters – a riverside wildlife hide is the place to go and try your luck.


In autumn and winter search for fungi on the woodland floor and the branches of trees. Above your head listen for the calls of long-tailed tits and tawny owls, while great spotted woodpeckers hammer out their territorial signals.



Picture perfect

Halsdon has miles of well-marked trails to discover. If you want to take a step further download a copy of our Ravilious Trail leaflet, named after the notable photographer James Ravillious who documented local people and places from the 1970s to the 1990s. This easy walking trail will take you to the scenes of some of his most famous images.


Explore on foot

You can use Halsdon as a base from which to explore this fascinating part of Devon. Use our Halsdon Wild Walk as your guide.

Species and habitats

Grassland, Woodland
Hazel dormouse, Otter

Nearby nature reserves

Ash Moor
3 miles - Devon Wildlife Trust
Meeth Quarry
3 miles - Devon Wildlife Trust
Stapleton Mire
6 miles - Devon Wildlife Trust

Nature reserve map

Reserve information

North west Devon, near the village of Dolton
Nr Great Torrington
EX19 8ND
Map reference
SS 553 131
Great for...
Best time to visit
Jan - Dec
Get directions
Find out here
Public transport
Plan your journey
Opening Times
Open at all times
57.00 hectares
Special Site of Scientific Interest
1km level track leads to the river. Most of the woodland paths are steep in parts and unsurfaced.
Walking information
4 way marked trails, allow 1.5 hours for the longest.
Two small car parks at its Ashwell and Quarry entrances.
Dogs under effective control
Grazing animals
Reserve manager
Devon Wildlife Trust
Tel: 01392 279244


Factsheets and guides for your visit