What to do this bank holiday in Devon

A mother and daughter looking at a donkey at the Donkey Sanctuary in Devon.

The Donkey Sanctuary is a magical place like no other. - Credit: Donkey Sanctuary

We've found all of the events and ideas to make this May Day memorable.

The next bank holiday weekend is fast approaching and falls from April 30th to May 2nd. With the sun shining and the extra time to enjoy, there are plenty of exciting ways to spend the three days. Here are just a few ideas and events to explore in Devon.

1. Salcombe Crab Fest

This food festival was designed to celebrate the brown crab caught by the Salcombe fleet off the South Devon and widely regarded as the best in the world. Crabfest brings together seafood lovers for food, drink and entertainment. There are hands-on cookery demonstrations by award-winning chefs, crab picking masterclasses, crab pot making, live music and activities for children.

Crabfest raises money for local causes including match-funding two night landing sites for the Devon Air Ambulance, part-funding a defibrillator at Salcombe Fish Quay and supplying a new vehicle for Salcombe’s First Responder.

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2. South Devon Railway 150th Anniversary

The delightful railway first opened on May 1st, 1872, so it's time to celebrate! An intensive train service will operate between Buckfastleigh and Totnes Riverside stations with the addition of a vintage bus service linking Buckfastleigh to Ashburton town, the original terminus of the railway. Special displays will illustrate the history of this idyllic branch line and there’ll be a few additions and recreations to bring history to life.

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3. Family Day Out

There are a huge number of attractions in Devon that cater to people of all ages. From zoos to natural parks, and even a Donkey Sanctuary, there is no reason why the whole family can't enjoy a grand day out. We have plenty of ideas to get you fully informed on what is out there. Why not start with our round up of 11 locations that are perfect for a bank holiday outing. You can find all the details here

4. Dine Out

Over the three days off, you may find that you don't fancy cooking for yourselves for a change. Devon has plenty of restaurants and eateries that are happy to oblige in that situation. With every menu you could possibly think of, there is a spot for everyone's tastes. If you're looking for something particularly special, why not check out our roundup of Michelin Star restaurants across the county. If the location is important to you, then these 20 restaurants with incredible views may be for you. Alternatively, head to one of these Devonshire bottomless brunches where the food and booze are on tap, perfect for a catch up with friends. 

5. Try Something Different

With good weather forecast (for now!) across the bank holiday weekend, it's a great time to get outdoors and try something unusual or new. The bank holiday also coincides with the start of Scree-Free Week which is a national programme to encourage us to get away from our phones and tablets, to enjoy the natural world around us. There are plenty of activities you could try, but we recommend Stand-Up Paddleboarding (SUP) as people of all ages and abilities can easily enjoy a trip on the water this way. You can find our favourite spots to try the sport here.

6. Take a Walk

On a similar, outdoorsy vein, our last suggestion for the bank holiday is to pull on your walking boots and enjoy the countryside. There are hundreds of walks to choose from in Devon, so it's very easy to pick something that interests you. For example, if you enjoy exploring woodlands and spring flowers, then our roundup of bluebell walks is perfect for you. You could also head over to the South Hams for this easy but highly rewarding walk on the coast.