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My 'Places to go in Somerset'

My 'Places to go in Somerset'

Somerset is so diverse. It’s full of wonderful things to see and do and there are plenty of places to go in Somerset. These are just a few of my favourites. 

Wilkins Cider, Lands End Farm, Mudgley

It sums up Somerset – unpretentious and beautiful! Set in the countryside, Wilkins has been producing excellent, good old fashioned cider for many a year. You can sample the goodies before buying (they are open 7 days a week!). I can’t think of a  better combination than unpasteurised cheddar cheese and proper cider.  Definitely one of my top places to go in Somerset.

Wells Trading Post, The Old Mill, Wells

Wells is a beautiful city, packed full of character. One of the many great things about ‘England’s smallest city’ is the range of independent shops. Wells Trading Post is a shop that I love and I could easily spend hours mooching around it. It’s crammed full of previously owned, wonderful things that are now looking for new homes. Sadly, I have nearly got all I need for The Cross but, even so, I will always be a regular visitor.

Wells Cathedral

Whilst this is an absolutely amazing building, (the West Front is particularly striking) it’s the little things that take my breath away. On certain days, when the sun is setting, the Cathedral is bathed in light and looks likes it is made of gold.

The steps to the Chapter House fascinate me. They have been worn smooth over the centuries and my mind wanders and imagines all the gatherings and events that could have happened in this amazing room.

Places to go in Somerset - The steps to the Chapter House

The steps to the Chapter House . Pic by Nick James

 

Wells is only a couple of miles away from The Cross and for me, it is another ‘must see’ when it comes to places to go in Somerset.

MORE PLACES TO GO IN SOMERSET

Markets

It doesn’t matter in what format; Food, artisan or craft – I love them. In Somerset, there are always markets happening some on a bi-weekly basis like Wells or monthly like Frome. The stalls may be very different from one market to another but they do have a common theme – they are independent and are a celebration of local talent and local produce.  

Places to go in Somerset - Wells Market

Glastonbury

A little like marmite – you will either love it or…

I love it. It’s packed with unusual shops and characters. The two iconic things for me are the Abbey and the Tor. Visit either and you can’t help but be transported back in time. I find myself imagining what life must have been like centuries before. Both the Abbey and the Tor have played a significant role in history for hundreds and hundreds of years.

If you like a good view then a walk up to the Tor is a must. If you prefer flat terrain then the grounds of the Abbey are idyllic.

Places to go in Somerset - Glastonbury Tor

Glastonbury Tor

 

Autumn

OK, I appreciate that this seems a strange choice on a list of places to go in Somerset, but I think Britain is very lucky to have four distinctive seasons. Autumn is very special in Somerset (perhaps being in the countryside makes you appreciate it more).

The changing leaf colours on the trees are wonderful but what really fascinates me are the apples and the hedgerows. There comes a time when trees are laden with apples that seems to hang on for dear life. When I drive down some of the small lanes the hedgerows seem so neat and perfect. Take the time to look more closely and you’ll often see various wildlife hiding away. At this time of year many hedgerows are full of berries and it’s not unusual to see people with plastic tubs and long sleeved shirts taking advantage of this bounty.

Gorges

The Mendips Hills have blessed Somerset with some magnificent landscapes which include incredible gorges and below ground, amazing caves. (New caves are being discovered all the time.) Most people will have heard of Cheddar Gorge but Ebbor Gorge is lesser known. Ebbor is very natural and untouched by commercialism. (You can stroll to the edge of some amazing drops without a safety fence or a shop in sight!) Walk back to Wookey and reward yourself with a drink in The Wookey Hole Inn.

Places to go in Somerset - Ebbor Gorge

Kilve Beach  

Somerset is blessed with some incredible coastlines. While Kilve beach doesn’t have luxurious white sand it does have plenty of rock pools for exploring at low tide. It’s quite rugged and a great place for fossil hunting. (It is a site of Special Scientific Interest, so removing fossils from the cliffs and bedrock is prohibited.)

Porlock & Porlock Weir

A tiny tidal harbour which has existed for a thousand years. The village of Porlock is picture postcard – full of little shops and tea rooms and the perfect place for walking. The drive is also stunning as it touches Exmoor.

The Levels

Places to go in Somerset - Somerset Levels

Pic by Nick James

 

As the name suggests, this region of Somerset is very flat. But as the Dutch will tell you, flat doesn’t mean boring! The Levels go on for miles and I can still get lost when I drive out there.

It’s a great area for cycling (no nasty hills and not much traffic) and the countryside is beautiful. It’s also a haven for wildlife. Rare bird species are attracted to the wetlands making it a ‘Twitchers’ paradise. The Sheppey Inn and Sweets Tea Rooms are essential stopping off points.

So that’s my brief list of some of the places to go in Somerset. I hope to see you soon!

 

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