Children in Dartmoor

Dartmoor National Park

Dartmoor is the largest open space in southern England.

At the heart of Dartmoor National Park is the largest and highest upland area in southern England, popular for generations with visitors thanks to its beauty and serenity. Its rugged moorland, temperate woodlands and granite tors have been a wellspring of inspiration for writers, such as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle whose “Hounds of the Baskervilles” is set on Dartmoor, and hikers and campers alike.

Dartmoor is a key habitat for many ground nesting birds and bats. Nearly all of the UK’s 16 bat species have been recorded on Dartmoor and it is especially important for rare bat species such as the barbastelle and the greater and lesser horseshoe.

Did you know? The woodlands on Dartmoor are classed as temperate rainforests due to the relatively mild and rainy climate of the region.


Designation: 30/10/1951

Habitats: Moorland, heathland, woodland, ancient woodland, valleys, hay meadows, farmland

Common wildlife: Ground nesting birds such as meadow pipet, adder, Dartmoor pony

Star spots: Otters, marsh fritillary butterfly, greater horseshoe bat, lesser horseshoe bat, barbastelle bat, hazel dormouse, cuckoo

Notable towns and cultural sights: Hound Tor medieval village, Grimspound, Haytor, Dartmoor Prison Museum

Notable nature sights: Caves, granite outcrops

Popular activities for visitors: Hiking, rock climbing

Highest peak: High Willhays Tor at 621 meters above sea level

Threats: Climate change