Pictures of Ilfracombe
It was the exciting early days of rail travel that brought popularity and prosperity to Ilfracome. The opening up of rail lines up and down the country, enticed all levels of society to pack a suitcase, catch a train, to explore for themselves the delights of fresh towns, countryside and coast. This new breed of tourist, packed the trains and headed off to places they had never heard of, and without the new trains, could not have hoped to visit. Thus, Ilfracome, one of Devon's larger resorts, owes much to the Victorian Era. The gracious 19th-century properties in the town were all built during the 'boom' the town experienced at this time.
Ilfracombe, is as much a joy today as it was then. It benefits from its spectacular position on a splendid stretch of coastline. Here, you have it all; magnificent cliffs rising to great heights above a sea that glistens copper in the sun, a natural harbour bright with gaily coloured fishing craft and beautiful yatches, all jostling for a safe mooring for the night. Above the harbour is Lantern Hill and the Chapel of St.Nicholas. For hundreds of years a light has beamed from this chapel guiding those in peril to the safety of the harbour. The sea here is subject to the Bristol Channel's turbulent tides - heavy swells make this stretch unsuitable for certain type's of vessel.
All along the seafront the magnificent cliffs break-up, and low tide reveals shale-sand beaches and rock pools to which children flock with bucket and spade hoping to catch a crab or two! The town offers many pleasant walks but beware, the nature of the land is not for the feint hearted. The Torrs walk climbs over 400ft and once at the summit, the walker is rewarded with outstanding views. Capstone Hill rises above the promenade and is more suited to those wishing only for a gentle stroll.
If your particular interest is ancient buildings the the Manor of Chambercombe is a must. It is but a mile from the town and dates the period following the Norman conquest. The interior houses a fine collection of Tudor and Jacobean furniture, Armour from the Civil War, a 15th-century private chapel and many other treasures. The area has Churches and other buildings of architectual interest.
Ilfracombe, with its beautiful public gardens, delightful harbour and shingly beaches is backed by the fabled exmoor countryside of rolling hills, deep green valleys snaked with sparking river streams, woodland and wild moorland alive with flora and fauna - it is a breathtaking setting that provides endless pleasurable hours for any visitor.
Seaside attractions include; fishing trips and pleasure trips to Lundy Island, a Victorian tidal bathing pool, there is a Water Mill at Hele Bay and at nearby Combe Martin there is a Wildlife Park.
Ilfracombe information provided by Terri Walton