Your guide to the best of the Jurassic coast

What's on

Sidmouth Walking Festival

Start Date: Sat 22nd September 2018

End Date: Fri 28th September 2018

Sidmouth Walking Week offers daily guided and circular walks, enjoying East Devon’s Coast & Country. Check" rel="nofollow">"> for details

Sidmouth Science Festival

Start Date: Thu 27th September 2018

End Date: Sun 14th October 2018

Sidmouth Science Festival, a great interactive, multi location event, for all ages.

Shute Festival of Literature and Landscape 2018

Start Date: Fri 28th September 2018

End Date: Sun 30th September 2018

A boutique festival set in the stunning surrounds of Shute in East Devon’s AONB. Now in its third year the Festival brings together a diverse and inspirational group of writers and broadcasters – including botanists, biographers, explorers, documentary makers, gardeners, historians, poets, travel specialists and novelists. Panellists talk, present films, lead workshops, debate and answer questions. This year’s highlights include Ester Freud, William Ryan, Anne Swithinbank, Stephen Calloway, Renee Edwards, Adam Hart-Davis and many more! Full details including tickets are at

Apple day at Elbury Farm Orchard

Start Date: Sat 29th September 2018

End Date: Sat 29th September 2018

Make delicious apple juice, Saturday 29 September, 2:00pm to 4:00pm

Help to gather apples to chop and press to make delicious fresh fruit juice.

Bring a container and take some home.

No dogs.

Wellies advised.

Limited disabled access, please contact the Countryside team to discuss.

Free. no booking required.

Family Food Fair

Start Date: Sat 13th October 2018

End Date: Sat 13th October 2018

A fab ‘foodelicious’ event celebrating the local food and drink scene at The Donkey Sanctuary, Sidmouth.

One for foodies and families alike, this event will showcase the best food, drink and talent our region has to offer – with a focus on inspiring your kids to get cooking.

For the grown-ups, we have a line-up of fantastic local chefs to provide cookery demonstrations throughout the day, giving you the chance to sample some mouth-watering delights as well as inspiration for at home.

In the KidsZone, youngsters can make their way round various stations, from making their own lunch from scratch (pizzas or fish finger baps and fruit salad for dessert), having their face painted, decorating a donkey biscuit and getting crafty at the colouring in station. Entry into the zone costs £5 per child and includes all of the above.

There are a myriad of prizes on offer on the day, from a selection of tickets in the prize draw, to a luxury hamper and other prizes in a raffle, plus the chance to bid on some fabulous prizes in the food fair auction, including:
– Half day cookery course at the Exeter Cookery School
– One hour classic car ride for four people at The Deer Park Country House
– Afternoon tea for two at Sidmouth Harbour Hotel
– One hour taster experience at the Landrover Experience
– A two night glamping stay in a yurt with Holnest Holidays.

Tuck in to some delicious treats from local producers including the Flaming Good Pizza Co., Good Game, The Posh Kebab Company & Love Coffee.

Treat yourself to some award-winning food and drink from the likes of County Cakes, The Wooden Fish, Hullabaloos Lemonade, Budleigh Bees, Branscombe Brewery, Louise’s Larder, Norsworthy Dairy Goats and Edwards Fudge Kitchen.

Entertainment will be provided by local, accomplished acoustic duo, Vine & Dandy.

Please note that the majority of the event will be held inside a marquee but some traders may be situated outdoors, so come prepared for the British weather with appropriate footwear and clothing.

No visit to The Donkey Sanctuary would be complete without meeting some of the resident donkeys including the gentle giant Poitous, lovable adoption donkeys and cute miniature donkeys. Visitors can also explore the exciting new indoor attractions and discover just why donkeys are so special through fun, interactive displays.

£2 per adult including entry into the prize draw to win a selection of tickets to Devon’s Top Family Attractions, under 12s are free. £5 per child for entry into the KidsZone (includes lunch).

Free parking and dogs are welcome on a lead.

Further information
01395 573156 |

Trade stands
Booking essential for traders, please contact us on 01395 573156 or

All proceeds go directly to the worldwide work of The Donkey Sanctuary.

October half term tricks and treats

Start Date: Sat 20th October 2018

End Date: Wed 31st October 2018

Have a scream this Halloween with the trick or treat trail, pumpkin carving and brave the bat beacon if you dare! With yummy treats and the odd trick, there is ‘spooktacular’ fun for all to be had at The Donkey Sanctuary this October half term.

Trick or Treat trail
20–31 October, 9am – 5pm
Do you know what can be given to donkeys as a special treat and what they should never have? Enjoy an autumnal adventure around the sanctuary with family and friends, finding the tricks among the treats – and you’ll receive something good to eat. Just £3 per trail including a prize on completion.

Pumpkin carving
22–28 October, 11am – 3pm
Get creative and have a go at carving your spooky masterpiece for just £3 per person, ready to take home and show off at Halloween.

Bat Beacon
20–31 October, 9am-5pm
If you go down to the woods today, you’re sure of a big surprise! Visit the creepy Nature Centre nestled in the Hermitage Woods and discover more about the wildlife who call the sanctuary their home, including the different species of bat that use the woods, hedges and fields to hunt for insects.

So, get the family outdoors this autumn and meet some of the hundreds of friendly donkeys who are cared for in Sidmouth, including the gentle giant Poitou donkeys, the lovable adoption donkeys and ever-so cute miniature donkeys.

The sanctuary constantly update their programme of things to do and see, so make the most of your visit with fascinating tours, talks and demonstrations delivered by knowledgeable staff – just head to the main entrance on arrival for all the details.

Come rain or shine they’ve got you covered with their exciting new indoor attractions, where you’ll discover just why donkeys are so special through fun, interactive displays in the new Exhibition Barn, Understanding Donkeys Zone and Dr Svendsen’s Hut. And the fun doesn’t stop there; have a go at the maze, looking resplendent in its autumn colours and see if you can find your way to the middle and back out again – without getting lost!

When it’s time to rest those weary feet, take a break at The Kitchen restaurant; overlooking the donkeys’ paddocks and Jurassic Coast, it is a great spot in which to relax with freshly-prepared, wholesome dishes using local and ethically sourced produce. And before heading home, a visit to the brand new Gift Shop is a must for all those unique donkey-design items and gifts to suit every pocket.

Entry and parking at the sanctuary is FREE. Dogs on leads are welcome.

Further information
01395 578222 |

All proceeds help fund the work of The Donkey Sanctuary Worldwide.

Ottery St. Mary Tar Barrels

Start Date: Mon 5th November 2018

End Date: Mon 5th November 2018

This is one of these events you HAVE to have experienced once. Total flaming madness in the centre of Ottery, from 4 pm all the way until midnight. Free to enter but donations to help keep the tradition going strongly encouraged.

Ottery St Mary Food & Families Festival

Start Date: Fri 31st May 2019

End Date: Sat 1st June 2019

The 7th Ottery St Mary Food & Families Festival is planned for Saturday June 1 2019, with various Fringe activities on Friday evening (May 31). Free entry, with lots to do for all the family.