Exmoor National Park
Exmoor National Park is a protected area in South West England, covering 267 square miles (692 square kilometers) of hilly moorland, coastal cliffs, and valleys. It was established in 1954 to conserve and enhance the natural beauty, wildlife, and cultural heritage of the region.
Geographically, Exmoor is characterized by its rolling moorland, deep valleys, and rugged coastline. The park is known for its diverse wildlife, including red deer, otters, and Exmoor ponies, which are native to the area. The park also contains a number of small villages and towns, including Lynmouth and Porlock.
Exmoor has a rich and fascinating history. The area has been inhabited for thousands of years, and there are numerous prehistoric sites to be found, including standing stones, stone circles, and hill forts. During the Middle Ages, Exmoor was used for farming and forestry, and many of the old farmsteads and woodland areas can still be seen today. In the 19th century, Exmoor became a popular destination for tourists, with the construction of several grand hotels and the arrival of the railway.
Interesting facts about Exmoor National Park include:
- The park is home to the rare Exmoor pony, one of Britain's oldest breeds of horse, which is known for its hardiness and agility.
- The Tarr Steps, a clapper bridge that dates back to the Bronze Age, is located in the park.
- The park contains a stretch of the South West Coast Path, a 630-mile (1,014-kilometer) trail that runs along the coast of South West England.
- The novelist R.D. Blackmore set his novel "Lorna Doone" in the Exmoor countryside.
- The park is known for its dark skies, making it a popular destination for stargazing.
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