So much to experience
Somerset is a county of contrasts from invigorating coastlines and seaside sandy beaches to gigantic limestone gorges, from low-lying wetlands to uplands and moors with panoramic views.
Within those contrasts there is a wide choice of things to do in Somerset. The landscape gives rise to some of the best grassland in the world, along with beautiful apple and pear orchards and fields of vegetables. Somerset offers a brilliant choice of quality local food and drink – ciders, ales, fruit juices and cheeses including, of course, cheddar! Farming in Somerset is at its most traditional with agriculture matching the landscape. This is celebrated at many traditional country shows throughout the year including The Royal Bath and West Show, Dunster Show, The North Somerset Show, The Mid Somerset Show and Yeovil Show. Somerset even has its own Cheese Show at the Frome Agricultural Show each September!
Also alongside this landscape sit Somerset’s stately homes and gardens. Be inspired by Gertrude Jekyll’s creativity at Hestercombe or Barrington Court through to the Margaret Fish cottage garden at East Lambrook Manor Gardens. The Prior Park Landscape Garden in Bath offers one of the most exquisite views in Europe, a tease of the Georgian city behind.
The stunning architecture of Wells Cathedral also provides a great backdrop to the Bishop’s Palace and Gardens as does Forde Abbey to the thirty acres of lawns, arboretum and the tallest powered fountain in England. Kilver Court Gardens are set against a 19th century viaduct whereas the RHS partnered Walled Gardens at Cannington has a Grade 1 listed medieval priory backdrop. Somerset’s cutting edge in contemporary garden design can be seen at Hauser & Wirth and The Newt in Somerset.
Somerset churches also blend local stone and architecture with the unique landscape, from Culbone near Porlock which is said to be the smallest church in England, Raddington which seems to be in the middle of nowhere, to a church that actually is in a field at Low Ham! These are beautiful places to see in Somerset for those who love the outdoors and charm of nature and who appreciate how architecture blends with the landscape.
Wildlife watching is a key part of appreciating nature in Somerset. Wildlife sightseeing and bird watching is popular at RSPB reserves including Greylake, Ham Wall and Swell Woods. It’s a roll call of nature including otters, water-voles, bitterns, kingfishers, lapwing, redshank, snipe and herons.
There are so many ways that the landscape can provide for a free day out in Somerset. Amazing views cost nothing, whether from Somerset’s highest point at Dunkery Beacon on Exmoor, Brean Down which acts as a natural pier into the Bristol Channel, Glastonbury Tor, Crook Peak, Cheddar Gorge or Brent Knoll.
The Pump Room Restaurant
Built in 1795, the Pump Room is one of the most elegant and historical buildings in the country, and still today after more than 300 years people come together to celebrate in this unique venue.
Stalwarts of the Somerset and Bristol brewery scene, Butcombe have been brewing consistently high-quality premium beers since 1978. Butcombe Brewing Co. love nothing more than hosting a bunch of beer enthusiasts at their brewery. Great for experts and beginners alike, we’ll happy share our passion and craft with you.
Our award winning Golden Jubilee Restaurant in Weston Super Mare, Somerset epitomises the elegant Regency style for which Weston was formally renowned. Open to both residents and non-residents this proves to be a very popular eatery to all.
Our Feathers Bar has been elegantly designed and refurbished with comfort in mind. Open daily for morning coffee, drinks, real ales, snacks, afternoon tea and cakes proving a popular place to relax with residents and non-residents alike.
Longleat, nestled within 900 acres of ‘Capability’ Brown landscaped grounds, is home to the UK’s original Safari Park, one of the best examples of Elizabethan architecture, with an abundance of exciting attractions including Jungle Kingdom and Animal Adventure where you can get up-close and personal with truly amazing animals.
Historic home of the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge in Somerset near BridgwaterAs in the poets’ day, there is still wilderness, heathland and a rocky shoreline where you can lose yourself in thought. The mix of heath on the top is a characteristic of the Quantocks and includes heather, whortleberry, gorse, bracken and wavy-haired grass. There is woodland too, once prized as a source of timber for ship building and now by walkers for its tranquillity. The oaks here are Sessile with acorns that grow directly on the branch and twisted trunks.
Somerset’s food and drink industry offers an abundance of produce available at local farm shops and delis. Find out where to shop for Somerset food and drink & more....
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