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Too crowded in July??

USA
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Too crowded in July??

Planning to spend 2 weeks this summer in southwest England. Want to hike, bird and explore in Exmoor and Dartmoor National Parks. We are seeking solitude! Defintiely want to avoid crowds, kids and "tourist traps". Have read that southwest England is overrun with vacationers in July. Is this true even in early July?? When does the school year end? I thought August was the big vacation month in the UK.

7 replies to this topic
Plymouth
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1. Re: Too crowded in July??

Hello! I would never describe Dartmoor and Exmoor as tourist traps. However in late July and August they will be busier than at other times of the year, but they cover a good many square miles and you should be able to find peace and quiet, if not complete, mile after mile, solitude .

School holidays start somewhen in the last two weeks of July -the exact date varies from one part of England to another.

Bodmin, United...
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for Cornwall
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2. Re: Too crowded in July??

You will certainly find a place away from the crowds on Dartmoor or Exmoor. If you don't want the crowds stay away from the main tourist towns.

Schools break up in England in mid July, but I believe that Scottish schools break up earlier than that, so July and August are going to be busy in the main towns. There are also people who don't have children who take holidays in June and early July to catch some summer weather but avoid the price hikes of school summer holidays.

But with Exmoor covering 267 square miles and Dartmoor covering 368 square miles, there is room enough for everyone.

Hampshire, England.
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3. Re: Too crowded in July??

School summer holidays start around the last week of July until about the first week of September (may vary slightly depending on area).

Newton Abbot...
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4. Re: Too crowded in July??

My kids go to school in this area, and they break up on July 23rd, but as others say, different areas have different end of term dates for their schools. But again, as others have said, Devon is a vast county, and at any time of year it is not too difficult to get away from the masses. Getting 'off the beaten track' is relatively easy here as there are so many lanes to drive down and so many public footpaths to walk down! If you do your research carefully, and ask the right questions on here, you can organise a holiday according to your wishes quite easily.

I would certainly say that parts of the Southwest of England feel overrun by holidaymakers, but not the whole of it, by any means! Avoid the so called tourist traps, and you should be fine!

Somerset
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for Somerset, Solo Travel, Exmoor National Park
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5. Re: Too crowded in July??

Exmoor is 70% in Somerset which has most of the moorland. It is a quieter county because it is often overlooked. It is seldom busy and there are great swathes where you will see no one if that is you wish.

Where there are honeypots they tend to draw mainly at weekends and few people walk more than a few yards from them. Those people you do meet will be people like you.

It is fabulous walking country with plenty of pubs/tea rooms in the villages to drop into if you want a bite to eat.

You will find a lot of websites for the area about walking and wildlife, Within the National Park there are sites owned by the National Trust, English Heritage & Sites of Special Scientific Interest so a very special place with lots to see. You can view the coast from the sea which is interesting showing the old coves & villages at the bottom of cliffs.

Quite honestly the people who come away in the school holidays (end July/August) have children and tend to stay in town with a sandy beach.

UK
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6. Re: Too crowded in July??

As long as you stay away from the coast, especially beaches and major towns, you won't find it crowded at all. Go to a seaside place though and you may not even be able to find a place to park. Late June or early September is still probably a better choice though, few if any kids, chance of getting to the coast and parking should you wish it.

USA
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7. Re: Too crowded in July??

Thanks very much evryone! This gives me hope that we can find the perfect balance of solitude vs. pleasant social contact on our adventure in southwest UK. We're hoping to get there late June into early July. I will be back with many more questions. Thanks again.

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