Bellever Forest sits within the stunning Dartmoor National Park and is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers.

From relaxing walks amidst towering trees to exhilarating hikes up Bellever Tor, whether you’re seeking a peaceful woodland walk, an adrenaline-fueled adventure, or a family-friendly outing, Bellever Forest has something to offer for everyone.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore everything you need to know about Bellever Forest for your visit!

How to Get to Bellever Forest

Located less than 2 miles away from the picturesque village of Postbridge, Bellever Forest is easily accessible by car. The 98 Tavistock to Yelverton bus service also runs via Postbridge and Bellever daily Monday – Saturday, providing access by public transport.

Facilities at Bellever Forest

At Bellever Forest you can find the following facilities:

  • Toilets – open 9.30am to 5pm.
  • Accessible toilet.
  • Picnic area.
  • Car Park.

Where to Park at Bellever Forest

Bellever Forest has a designated car park, providing convenient access to the forest trails. Head to the Forestry Commission car park, Postbridge SX646787, for the closest parking spot.

Parking here costs £3 for up to 2 hours, or £5 for all day.

Alternatively, if you’re after a longer walk, you can park at the National Park Visitor Center in Postbridge, which is about a 30-minute walk from Bellever Forest.

When is Bellever Forest Open?

  • Bellever village car park and toilets are open daily from 9.30am – 5.00pm.
  • Postbridge village car park is open daily dawn – dusk.

Image Credit: Derek Harper / In Bellever Forest / CC BY-SA 2.0

How Accessible is Bellever Forest?

A short, surfaced path leads from the car park to the East Dart riverbank. The easy-access trail is 240 metres / 0.15 miles (0.2 km). This is an ideal place to head for a short route that leads to a fantastic spot for a picnic.

There is a longer Tramper-friendly route that you can follow, which is suitable for bicycles and Trampers, and passes some of Bellever’s archaeological features.

Are Dogs Allowed at Bellever Forest?

Yes, dogs are welcome at Bellever Forest, and there are plenty of walking trails to follow that you and your pup will enjoy! It’s advisable to keep dogs on the lead down by the river, as this is a popular picnic area, and there may also be Dartmoor ponies present.

Can You Camp at Bellever Forest?

Overnight stays are not allowed in the forest, so you cannot camp at Bellever Forest.

Things to Do at Bellever Forest

Whether you’re seeking solitude amidst nature or pursuing adrenaline-fueled adventures, Bellever Forest offers something for everyone. Here are some of the top activities and attractions to explore:

Bellever Forest Walking Trails

Lace up your boots and embark on a journey of exploration along Bellever Forest’s network of walking trails. From leisurely strolls to challenging hikes, there are routes suited to all abilities to choose from:

  • Easy Access Route – 0.2km (0.15 miles) – a short, surfaced path from the car park to the East Dart riverbank – perfect for a picnic. Easy route.
  • History Hunters Trail – 2.4km (1.5 miles) – discover the history of Bellever Forest as you pass some of the archaeological sites, including the Kraps Ring Bronze Age enclosure. Families can find quiz sheets at the Postbridge Visitor Centre, which will tell you more about Bronze Age Dartmoor. Easy route.
  • River and Forest Trail – 2.6km (1.6 miles) – a nice walk by the River Dart, following forest, moorland and meadows. Moderate route.
  • Cycle and Tramper Trail – 3.9km (2.4 miles) – suitable for bikes and Trampers, the route passes interesting archaeological sites. Moderate route.

Image Credit: summit of Bellever Tor by Partonez under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license

  • Bellever Tor Trail – 4km (2.5 miles) – experience unforgettable views from Bellever Tor with a scenic route through the forest up to the tor. Moderate route.
  • Gunpowder Trail – 6km (3.8 miles) – a challenging trail that leads to the remains of Powdermills, Devon’s only gunpowder factory. Hard route.
  • The Lych Way – 19.3km (12 miles) – a long-distance bridleway that starts at Bellever, through the forest and out onto the moor. The historic trail follows the 12 mile journey that 13th century locals had to take to bury their dead at Lydford parish church.

Cycling at Bellever Forest

Bring your bike and hit the trails for an exhilarating ride through Bellever Forest. The Cycle and Tramper Trail is a 2.4 mile path suitable for bikes and Trampers. The path is mostly surfaced forest roads with a flat section of unsurfaced bridleway. The route passes interesting archaeological sites, and at one point joins onto the Lych Way trail, before returning to the car park.

Discover more cycle trails on Dartmoor to enjoy

Picnics at Bellever Forest

Pack a hamper of delicious treats and find a scenic spot to enjoy a leisurely picnic amidst the beauty of Bellever Forest. Dining al fresco in this idyllic setting is sure to be a memorable experience. There are picnic tables near the car park, or head down the easy access path to the East Dart River for a fantastic picnic spot along the river bank.

Barbeques are not permitted in the forest, or any other forms of fire, as they can easily cause wildfires and harm local wildlife.

Be aware that there may be Dartmoor ponies in the area, it is important not to feed them anything!

Pick up and remove any litter and take it home with you from the forest to help preserve the environment and local wildlife.

Wildlife Watching at Bellever Forest

Keep your eyes peeled for the diverse array of wildlife that calls Bellever Forest home. Binoculars in hand, you may spot Dartmoor ponies, roe deer grazing, or even elusive otters darting through the streams. Birdwatchers will delight in the opportunity to observe a variety of species including buzzards circling overhead, goshawks, and nightjars.

Geocaching Around Bellever Forest

Join the modern-day treasure hunt and try your hand at geocaching in Bellever Forest. Armed with GPS coordinates and a sense of adventure, you’ll set out to discover hidden caches tucked away in the nooks and crannies of the forest and surrounds. Each find offers a sense of satisfaction and the chance to connect with fellow treasure seekers.

History and Heritage on Bellever Forest

Immerse yourself in the rich history of Bellever Forest, which boasts ancient archaeological sites dating back thousands of years. Be sure to visit the prehistoric stone rows and cairns scattered across the landscape, offering fascinating insights into Dartmoor’s past.

Letterboxing on Bellever Forest

A unique Dartmoor tradition, letterboxing combines orienteering with treasure hunting, making it an exciting activity for families. Equipped with a map, compass, and a sense of adventure, follow clues hidden within the landscape to discover letterboxes containing stamps and logbooks. It’s a fantastic way to engage children in navigation skills while exploring Dartmoor’s hidden gems.

If you’re staying at our hotel on Dartmoor, Bellever Forest is approximately 25 minutes away from Mill End by car, and is well worth the visit if you like to explore nature. It offers a range of trails suited to a variety of abilities, so there is something here for everyone.