Wildlife Watching

Deer Watching

Exmoor is home to England's largest herds of wild red deer. These roam freely over its moors and hide in its combes.

Seeing these large wild animals, especially some of the regal stags, is an exhilarating experience that captures the essence of the space and freedom of Exmoor.

Whether you are out walking, riding or quietly driving over the moor, there is always the chance of seeing deer. Your can increase your chances of finding them by seeking local knowledge and advice about where and when to look.

Take a Safari

Alternatively, you can book a place on a four-wheel drive safari when your driver and guide will use his, or her, local knowledge of smaller highways and byways and maybe also private land, to find the deer and Exmoor ponies for you. These safaris explore the hidden heart of Exmoor. They are exciting for children and fascinating for adults, both for the actual experience of being driven into areas inaccessible without four-wheel drive, and because of the total natural history experience.

Click here to find Safari providers.

Bird Watching

Three special features of Exmoor explain its rich resident and migrant bird life:

  • Its low population density and man's limited impact on its landscape and vegetation - over half of the Exmoor National Park is semi-natural habitat
  • Its diverse topography and vegetation with mixed and rare ecosystems - steep rugged cliffs, wooded cliffs, natural moorland of heather heath and scrub and its sheltered wooded and open valleys with their streams and rivers
  • The mild winters in its coastal areas.

Keep an eye out for the many species of raptors, the common buzzards, sparrowhawks and kestrels, also peregrines, merlins, hobbies, possibly hen harriers, red kites, and even goshawks, in winter. A wealth of smaller birds: kingfishers and dippers can be spotted along the streams in valley bottoms, plus stonechats, whinchats, Dartford warblers and more... little egrets, hoopoes, mergansers

The area with the greatest diversity of habitat is Porlock Vale - one place to be visited during your stay!