Bideford is an attractive town on the west bank of the River Torridge, where the river begins to widen to form the estuary. The old road has a lovely old stone bridge, built in 1535, crossing the Torridge, linking the town of Bideford to its neighbouring village East the Water.
The Pannier Market with Butcher’s Row, a row of 24 shops all under cover, running along one side, is an eclectic mix of shops many offering unique and locally made gifts. In some of the shops you can watch as the craftsmen and women create their masterpieces. If you fancy a spot of brand name shopping head out of town to the Affinity Devon Outlet for bargains galore.
The tree-lined quay still bustles with fishing vessels, cargo and pleasure boats and there are regular trips to Lundy Island in the Bristol Channel, about 12 miles away. For cyclists and walkers, there is the traffic free Tarka Trail to explore the lovely local scenery.
Take time to stroll around Victoria Park, opened in 1912 to celebrate Queen Victoria’s reign. The park and flowerbeds are carefully tended throughout the seasons but are most spectacular in spring and summer. It’s an ideal family park with a variety of recreational facilities, a children’s play area, open-air paddling pool and skateboard park. The Burton at Bideford is at the town end of the park and also houses the Cafe du Parc. Entry to the Gallery is free and inside you will also find the local tourist information centre along with a gift shop. The gallery houses a permanent collection and a gallery of local crafts.