Tranquil Somerset will astound

The quieter southwest county has lots to shout about.

THERE ARE many great reasons to visit beautiful Somerset, not least because it’s so much closer for many of us than its popular southwest cousins.

As you pass Taunton you’re still 150 miles from Penzance, much of it on the A30, so we say jump off the M5 in Somerset and enjoy its many delights.

First stop should be dramatic Cheddar Gorge. From here, it’s a short trip to Wookey Hole and its famous caves. The caves are among the most spectacular in Britain, and kids will also love the animatronic dinosaurs, 4D cinema, Magical Mirror Maze and Mystic Fairy Garden. On day two, explore deepest Somerset: Taunton town, Haynes’ brilliant motor museum in Sparkford, the amazing Fleet Air Arm Museum at Yeovilton, or travel back in time on the West Somerset Railway.

The railway is England’s longest heritage line, rolling 20 miles from Bishops Lydeard to Minehead, through stunning countryside and pretty villages. Plan your trip for steam action, as heritage diesels do also run. The car park has a 2.1m-high barrier at Bishops Lydeard. Minehead parking has no restrictions.

Then you have the appeal of a visit to mystical Glastonbury with its many unique shops and, of course, a climb up its famous Tor from which you are treated to amazing views across the Somerset levels.

Finally, no visit to Somerset would be complete without spending a few hours visiting the city of Wells and its stunning cathedral.

Make your stay better

6 to 8 September 2019

The Southwest Motorhome Show

Bath and West Showground, Shepton Mallet, Somerset BA4 6QN


Price:  From £40 for weekend camping plus show entry. Day visitors: Adults from £7, Children free

The biggest and the best motorhome show in the southwest.


Weston Lions Club Real Ale & Cider Festival

Beach Lawns, Seafront, Weston-super-Mare BS23 1AT


Price: £1 (day) £3 (evening)

Three days of music, dance, food, but mainly testing Somerset and the southwest’s tastiest tipples. Pace yourself, it could get messy!


Have a go archery at Dunster Castle

Dunster Castle TA24 6SL

T:  01643 821314


Price: Castle admission, plus £4 for eight arrows or 10 pistol shots

Visit wonderful Dunster Castle and try your hand at archery or pistol shooting.

Places of Interest

  • Cheddar Gorge

    Cheddar BS27 3QF (Jct 22 on the M5)
    Price All-attractions ticket Adult £16.95, Child 5-15 £12.70 (in adv)
    Parking £5 per day, £3 from 3pm (ticket stub secures Costa Coffee discount). See p26 for more on Cheddar Gorge

  • Wookey Hole Caves

    The Mill High Street, Wookey Hole BA5 1BB
    T 01749 672243
    Price Adult £16.95, Child 3-14, £13.55, Senior £15.25 (three days in advance) See p26 for more on Wookey Hole

  • Haynes International Motor Museum

    Sparkford, Yeovil BA22 7LH
    Price Adult £15, Child 4-15 £9, Conc £13.50

  • Fleet Air Arm Museum

    RNAS Yeovilton, Ilchester BA22 8HT
    T 01935 840565
    Price Adult £13.50, Child 5-15 £10, Conc £12 (online)