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    Castle Drogo and Cod Wood Circular Walk

    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    12.1 km
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    491 m
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    Directions to Trailhead
    Castle Drogo and Cod Wood Circular Walk

    The Castle Drogo and Cod Wood Circular Walk is one of the most amazing routes in all of Dartmoor National Park, due in part to its wealth of historic sites, but also because of its breathtaking scenery. While out on the trail, you will pass by the extravagant 20th Century grounds of Castle Drogo before making your way through a steep-sloped valley along the River Teign. There may be a few ups and downs along the trail, but the scenic highlights are well worth the small amount of required effort

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    Route Description for Castle Drogo and Cod Wood Circular Walk

    Walking the Castle Drogo and Cod Wood Circular is a breathtaking experience filled with scenic views; however, there is also some challenging terrain that might make the trail more difficult for young children or less mobile walkers. Be sure to wear proper walking boots with good ankle support to better traverse the steep and uneven terrain along the route. Additionally, this route can be very muddy in the winter/spring seasons, so make sure to come prepared with water-resistant footwear during these times.

    Although the route can be steep and muddy, there is no better walk in Dartmoor National Park if you are after a good mix of scenic views, moderately challenging terrain, and wonderful local history. Not only will you pass by beautiful constructs like Castle Drogo, Fingle Bridge, and the Fingle Mill, but you will also enjoy breathtaking views across the rugged terrain of Teign Gorge. If you find yourself in the area and have a few hours to spare, you will not want to miss out on this fantastic walking route set in the charming Devon countryside.

    From the Castle Drogo car park, head to the southeast along the lane for 380ft and turn right onto the footpath. Make your way through the forest and begin to descend the slope leading into the Teign Gorge, heading left at the first junction, followed by an immediate right to continue further downhill. Keep straight along the trail known as the Hunter’s Path for the next 1.1 km, working along the top portion of the hillside until you reach another junction branching off to the right. Take this path to make your way downhill towards the valley floor, where you will eventually meet up with a road. Turning to the right, you will follow the road for a short distance until you reach the historic 17th Century Fingle Bridge and a lovely inn of the same name.

    Flanked by the dramatic terrain of the gorge, with two Iron Age hillforts - Prestonbury Castle to the northeast and Cranbrook Castle to the south - surrounding you, you will make your way to the south and cross over the charming stone bridge. Keep left along the road to pass by a parking area with toilet facilities before meeting up with a junction in the path. Head to the left here and follow the forested path along the winding banks of the River Teign for the next 0.7 km, passing by the Fingle Mill to arrive at another fork. Keep left along the water’s edge for another 1.3 km, enjoying the pleasant atmosphere of the riverside setting, before turning right along a trail that will take you uphill through Cod Wood to a stunning viewpoint overlooking the valley from the remains of Wooston Castle, another Iron Age hillfort.

    After taking in the views, do not follow the same path along the river. Instead, take the path to the southwest that cuts through a different stretch of forest, enjoying the serene setting as you keep right for 1.7 km to meet back up with the riverside path. Continue to the northwest and take the trail on the left to work around the opposite side of Fingle Mill, eventually arriving back at Fingle Bridge. Instead of crossing over the bridge, make your way to the left and follow the track that runs along the south side of the River Teign for the next 2.5 km. Once again, take some time to enjoy the relaxing atmosphere along the edge of the water, as you meander along the river bank and eventually come to another bridge.

    Turn right here and use the bridge to cross over the river, passing straight through the junction and keeping right to begin the somewhat steep ascent of Hunter’s Tor. Keep right as you work your way uphill through the gorge, travelling just below the grounds of Drogo Castle along the Hunter’s Path. From here, you can keep left at each successive junction to meet back up with the laneway, turning left to follow it back to the car park where you started your adventure along the Castle Drogo and Cod Wood Circular Walk.

    Trail Highlights

    Castle Drogo

    Castle Drogo is a beautifully constructed country house that was commissioned by Julius Drewe on lands that he believed were at one point in the possession of his supposed medieval ancestor, Drogo de Teigne. The building was constructed between 1911 and 1930, making it the last castle to be built in England, and the first 20th Century building to be taken over by the National Trust.

    Fingle Bridge

    This arched packhorse bridge was constructed in the 17th Century and utilized as a means for transporting goods and supplies across the River Teign and surrounding gorge. Named after a tributary of the river, Fingle Brook, the bridge is constructed of granite and was repaired in 1809.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Does anyone live in Castle Drogo?

    After its completion in 1930, Castle Drogo was inhabited by the Drewe family until 1974. At this point, ownership of the property was handed over to the National Trust.

    Insider Hints for Castle Drogo and Cod Wood Circular Walk

    • Wear proper walking shoes, as there are some steep and uneven portions of the trail.
    • Water-resistant footwear is recommended in winter/spring, as the trail can be quite muddy.
    • Keep your dog on a lead, as there will likely be livestock grazing in the area.
    • Pop into the Fingle Bridge Inn for some mid-walk refreshments.

    Getting to the Castle Drogo and Cod Wood Circular Walk Trailhead

    To reach the trailhead for the Castle Drogo and Cod Wood Circular Walk from the nearby village of Drewsteignton, head west for 0.8 km and make a left to continue on for 0.3 km. Make another left here and after 0.6 km you will find the entrance to the car park on your right.

    Route Information

    • When to do


    • Backcountry Campsites


    • Pets allowed

      Yes - On Leash

    • Family friendly


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