Near the idyllic village of Chagford, Fernworthy Reservoir is an archaeological jewel in the heart of Dartmoor National Park.

Walk through meadows, woodland and moorland, and take in the fascinating cultural heritage of ancient stone cairns, Bronze Age hut circles and submerged clapper bridges, while enjoying beautiful lakeside views.  

Car parking is just £2 for two hours, and £4 for the whole day. Your contribution helps us to maintain the lakes for everyone.

Wildlife at Fernworthy 

Alongside the interesting points of archaeology, the reservoir and surrounding forests are a haven for wildlife and rare species, including the Marsh Fritillary butterfly. Why not have a go at a spot of bird watching? There are two bird hides located at the western end of the reservoir, in the nature reserve. From these, numerous wader birds such as the Black Tailed Godwit can be spotted at certain times of the year. Engage with the natural and cultural heritage of this unique location and observe the fascinating interplay between the two.

Fernworthy Reservoir gravity feeds into Trenchford Reservoir and supplies Torquay with drinking water. The reservoir holds up to 380 million gallons of water, and was completed in 1942. 

Walking at Fernworthy

In partnership with Dartmoor National Park Authority, the Moor than meets the eye Landscape Partnership project has enabled us to vastly improve the surface and accessibility of the much-loved Potters Walk, including the round-reservoir footpath, bridge, boardwalk and site interpretation. This is a lakeside wheelchair and buggy accessible route of about ¾ mile, forming part of a 2.6 mile circular route that showcases the best that Fernworthy Reservoir has to offer. These improvements allow people of all abilities to enjoy time together by the lake.

Bring a packed lunch and make a stop at the perfectly appointed picnic area, where you can tuck into well-earned refreshments and overlook various archaeological points of interest and the lake itself.

Alternatively, go exploring deeper into the forest along other marked trails and enjoy your own little adventure! Bring your four-legged friend along on a lead, and enjoy the day with the whole family. You might even discover the legend of the Earth Gnomes…

Fishing at Fernworthy 

Fernworthy is a natural salmon trout fishery (more commonly known as brown trout), open from 15 March to 12 October each year and is a traditional fly fishing only lake. Permits are available on-site from the self-service permit hut or online. Find out more here.

Address: Fernworthy Reservoir, Newton Abbot, Devon, TQ13 8EA