Princetown Circular Walk is a 7.4 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near the city of Dartmoor Forest that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
A gently challenging circular route, that takes in some classic remote moorland which starts and ends at Princetown, an isolated little town in the heart of Dartmoor. The infamous large granite Dartmoor Prison can be seen near the start of the walk and its visitor centre is worth a detour if you have the time. Â Our route starts and ends in the centre of the town from the large car park at the rear of the Plume of Feathers pub. Top yourself up with a pub meal before you head off or reward yourself upon your return by way of saying thanks for the parking! Route Details 1. Walk out of the car park back to the main road and turn right downhill. (You'll notice a gate near the car park that leads uphill away to the moor land - this is the route by which you'll return). 2. As you walk down the road you'll see off to your left the bleak and imposing Dartmoor Prison. Built between 1806 and 1809 by local labour, it held French prisoners of the Napoleonic Wars as well as American prisoners from the 1812 war. At one time, it held the reputation of being the toughest prison in the UK but today conditions are much improved and it houses lower risk criminals. 3. Our route turns right at WP 1 through a gate between houses and follows the hedge on the right hand side as you climb gently uphill. 4. The path is obvious as it then descends over a little brook to a finger pointing sign. Turn right at WP 2, to soon arrive at a house on your left. 5. Turn left to walk uphill, passing the house on your left. Go through the gate onto the open moorland. The path soon gives you the choice of going left or right; our path is to the left. 6. After around 30 mins you'll reach GPS WP3. Nothing too distinguished here so you'll need GPS. You now have the choice of heading over the open moorland to hook up with GPS WP6. If you do, you'll cut off a section of the walk that avoids some pretty boggy ground between WP5 and WP6. 7. Assuming you're following the route as mapped, carry straight on to reach a finger post sign at WP4 at a wall and style. Turn right heading toward "Whiteworks". 8. The path is clear all the way up to a stream crossing - normally a really muddy point frequented by cattle. You could cross the stream here and follow what appears a pretty clear path forward. However this quickly peters out so you'll need GPS to stay on course to reach the abandoned tin mine at Whiteworks. I prefer to bite the bullet and head for WP 6 across some fairly boggy, tussocky open ground. It'll take around 10 mins but you'll soon rejoin an obvious path at WP6, where the walk becomes easy again. 9. Turn left at WP6 and follow a straight line course all the way to WP7, the old Industrial Revolution tin workings of Whiteworks. 10. Joint the tarmac road and follow uphill past the houses on your right to reach WP 8. 11. Turn off the road here onto the marked path. Go uphill in a straight line to join the ancient Abbot's Way path. 12. Turn right and follow the obvious straight path all the way back to the car park, enjoy spectacular views to Burrator Reservoir on your left.