Coleridge Way

Valley of Rocks & Poets shelter

Valley of Rocks & Poets shelter

Whilst the Coleridge Way ends on the sea front at Lynmouth you are well advised to follow the South West Coast Path up to the Valley of Rocks. It is impossible not to be awed by the stunning cliffs and crags, with their towering spires and pinnacles and the feral goats browsing among them.

Look out for the White Lady appearing between the boulders on Castle Rock, and Mother Meldrum in the Devil's Cheesewring – but don't be tempted to dance here on a Sunday, or the devil will turn you to stone!

At the eastern end of the valley is Poets Shelter. This 19th century feature was recently restored and offers stunning views alogn the dry valley and is just the palce to prepare the mind if starting the route here, or to reflect on the experiences and scenery encountered along the way if finishing here.

Samuel Coleridge, William Wordsworth and his sister, the poet and diarist Dorothy Wordsworth, visited the Valley of Rocks as part of a longer exploration of Exmoor's coast in November 1797. Coleridge and the Wordsworths fell in love with the Lynton area and even thought of settling there. Coleridge wrote to a friend: "We will go on a roam to Linton and Linmouth, which if thou camest in May will be in all their pride of woods and waterfalls, not to speak of the august cliffs, and the green ocean, and the Vast Valley of Stones all of which live disdainful of the seasons or accept new honours only from the winter's snow."


 

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