Dart Valley Cycleway

Dart Valley Cycleway cycle route overall rating: ⭐⭐

This 6.3 mile route is gorgeous, and will make a great day out, but is quite a mix. From the outset, you need to understand that the entire route isn’t traffic-free.

Surface on the Dart Valley Cycleway

Most of the route has a good tarred surface, but there are exceptions. From Dartington, to the edge of Totnes, the surface is self-compacting gravel. Alongside the river Dart, in Totnes, the tarred surface is old, and bumpy in places, due to tree roots.

Beyond Totnes, on the Shapham estate, the route changes from smooth tar to gravel again, right on the steepest section of the route. Between Shapham and Ashprington the route follows a normally very quiet lane, with a good tarred surface

Refreshments

You can get refreshments at various places, starting with several options in Dartington. There are many more options available in Totnes, and finally, at the Durant Arms pub, in Ashprington.

Bikes

There’s a lofty claim that the part of the route between Dartington and Totness is an “Access for All” route, and is supposedly wheelchair-friendly.
On that part of the route you can use almost any type of bike, but most cargo bikes and trikes will struggle in places.
Between Totnes and Ashprington, cargo bikes and trikes will get stuck. For that section of the route, you will want a bike with chunky tyres, ideally with off-road tyres.

Toilets

You can use toilets at Dartington, and Totnes (the route skirts the entrance to Morrison’s), with toilets also available at the pub at the end.

See also  Deerness Valley Railway Path cycle route

Ratings

Safety: ⭐
Hilliness: ⭐
Refreshment stops: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Barriers: ⭐
Surface: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Overall: ⭐⭐

The grading system I use is explained here.

Points of Interest

Totnes is quite a destination itself, with many quaint and curious, independent shops. Dartington offers several shops – often selling artwork – plus the Meadowbrook Community Centre (part of the Dartington Recreation Association, who also have a bike track).
The route goes right past the Totnes station of the South Devon Railway, a heritage railway linking Totnes and Buckfastleigh. Just a tiny bit further from the heritage station is the Totnes Rare Breeds Farm.
Finally, the Sharpham Trust offers a great deal, including camping right on the banks of the Dart.

Traffic-free cycle routes in Devon

Barriers

Quite early on there are chicane barriers on the route. At Dartington, there’s a narrow footbridge (you’re allowed to ride across it).
From Totnes to Ashprington, the route is littered with chicane barriers and gates.

Cycle Hire

Sadly, there is nowhere on, or near the route to hire bicycles.

Paying the rent

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See also  Crowd-sourcing traffic-free route guides

Weather forecast for the 

What the route looks like

Path surface on the Dart Valley Cycleway
Cattle along the Dart Valley Cycleway
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Getting to the Dart Valley Cycleway

You can easily get to the route car-free, by taking your bike on the train. The route skirts the very edge of the Totness train station. As ever, read my Bikes On Trains guide for useful and helpful tips for taking your bike on the train.

Parking near the Dart Valley Cycleway

There’s no parking at the start of the route (as shown on the map below). However, you can park at Dartington, or various car parks in Totnes.

More Traffic-free Cycle Routes

To find more routes, click this link.

DayCycle

DayCycle routes are routes that can can easily be cycled by most people in a day, or part of a day. Do have a look at all the other DayCycle routes available on WillCycle. Many contain detailed route guides, as well as embedded maps (like the one below).

Dart Valley Cycleway interactive map

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