Wells is a small cathedral town, with the rank of city, and civil parish situated in the district of Mendip, Somerset, England, at the southern end of the Mendip hills.
Durslade Farm Dropping Lane, Bruton Somerset BA10 0NL
Hauser & Wirth Somerset
Hauser & Wirth Somerset is a pioneering world-class gallery and multi-purpose arts center which acts as a destination for experiencing art, architecture, and the remarkable Somerset landscape through new and innovative exhibitions of contemporary art. An impressive landscaped garden, designed by internationally renowned landscape architect Piet Oudolf, sits behind the gallery buildings and includes a changing programme of outdoor sculptures, and houses the Radić Pavilion, designed by Smiljan Radić.
Centered around a core belief in conservation, education and sustainability, Hauser & Wirth Somerset offers a wide variety of special events including talks, seminars, workshops and screenings, as well as an extensive learning programme for local schools, young people and families. The center also provides resources including a bookshop and dedicated learning room.
Hauser & Wirth Somerset supports an immersive artist-in-residence programme, encouraging artists to benefit from the idyllic surroundings and to integrate with the local community.
On-site restaurant, Roth Bar & Grill, serves seasonal, locally sourced produce, and is replete with works of art including a site-specific bar created by Björn and Oddur Roth, the son and grandson of artist Dieter Roth.
The centre is located on the outskirts of Bruton, on Durslade Farm, which is a working free-range farm, providing produce for Roth Bar & Grill. The gallery opened in 2014 – prior to this the buildings had remained derelict for several decades, until they were sensitively restored and new buildings added by Paris based architectural firm Laplace. Durslade Farmhouse, the original six-bedroom farmhouse, also renovated by Laplace, is available to rent for short stays.
Hauser & Wirth Somerset has been awarded a RIBA South West Award 2015, a Civic Trust 2015 Award, and in 2014 it was the winner of the William Stansell Historic Buildings Award, for Durslade Farmhouse. In 2015 it ran its own competition for young architects, titled The Shed Project.
The center is open with free admission to the public, six days per week, throughout the year.
Stall Street, Bath BA1 1LZ, UK
Built for pleasure and relaxation, beautiful Bath has been a wellbeing destination since Roman times. The waters are still a big draw, both at the ancient Roman Baths and the thoroughly modern Thermae Bath Spa, which houses the only natural thermal hot springs in Britain you can bathe in.
Bath’s compact, visitor-friendly centre is overflowing with places to eat and drink, plus some of the finest independent shops in Britain, making it the ideal city break. Immerse yourself in Bath’s remarkable collection of museums and galleries, and enjoy year-round festivals, theatre, music and sports.
Bath's stunning honey-coloured Georgian architecture is straight from a Jane Austen novel - highlights include the iconic Royal Crescent and the majestic Circus. There’s plenty to see beyond the city, too, with stunning Somerset countryside to explore, as well as attractions like Stonehenge, Avebury and Longleat Safari Park.
With so much to see, it’s worth treating yourself to an overnight stay - choose from luxury hotels and grand Georgian guesthouses, or cosy country cottages and chic central apartments. For an even more serene visit, stay midweek to enjoy a different side to the city.
The Mill, High St, Wookey Hole, Wells BA5 1BB
Wookey Hole Caves
Wookey Hole Caves are a series of limestone caverns, a show cave and tourist attraction in the village of Wookey Hole on the southern edge of the Mendip Hills near Wells in Somerset, England. The River Axe flows through the cave. It is a Site of Special Scientific Interest for both biological and geological reasons.
Mendip Hills, Wells, UK
Mendip Hills AONB
This is one of England’s most special places – the limestone Mendip Hills with the lakes of the Chew Valley is a stunning landscape of steep slopes and undulating plateau punctuated by spectacular gorges and rocky outcrops. On the hilltops there are hundreds of ancient monuments, whilst on steeper slopes flower rich grasslands and wooded combes offer varied habitats for a wide variety of wildlife.
In recognition of its special qualities the area has been designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). One of 46 AONBs in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and a member of the National Association of AONBs, these protected landscapes are managed through local Partnerships on behalf of the nation. View the areas dedicated website below and discover some amazing walks which can be downloaded to your computer or mobile.
Cheddar Gorge and Caves, The Cliffs, Cheddar, BS27 3QF
Cheddar Gorge & Caves
Explore one of Britain's most spectacular natural landmarks. From its awe-inspiring cliffs to its extraordinary subterranean stalactite show caves. Cheddar Gorge & Caves holds many fascinating secrets about our prehistoric ancestors, and is an international centre for caving and rock climbing.
So what are you waiting for? Nature, wildlife, history, adventure - experience the wonder of it all on a perfect day out in Somerset.
Marsh Lane, Farrington Gurney, Bristol, UK
Farrington Golf and Country Club
Situated in 200 acres of rolling Somerset countryside 2 minutes drive from The Old Parsonage, the former Duchy of Cornwall land has been turned into 27 holes of exciting and challenging golf. With stunning views and tranquil location, the courses offer an enjoyable and relaxing experience for all golfers.
The Par 72 Duchy Course was opened in 1995 and has matured into a beautifully conditioned variety of parkland and lakeland golf holes. Measuring 6600 yards from the white tees, 6300 from the yellow tees, 6000 from the green tees and 5600 from the red tees, the course can be enjoyed by golfers of all abilities. The undulating U.S.G.A. specification greens will test even the best putters and the excellent drainage guarantees all year round golf.
The Par 27 Manor Course is a great place to use all the clubs in the bag. With holes varying from 80 yards to 240 yards this is definitely no pitch and putt. With the greens the same specification as the Duchy Course and plenty of bunkers lurking, all golfers will enjoy this hidden gem.
Farrington also boasts some of the best practice facilities in the area. With a large putting green, extensive chipping green with practice bunkers, 16 bay covered floodlit driving range with power tees, 6 grass bays and a 300 yard long practice ground, it is no surprise players come from miles around to use them.
The well stocked professional’s shop offers friendly advice from PGA qualified professionals as well as a state of the art indoor club fitting and coaching studio.
The luxurious Oaks Restaurant is situated in the main club house overlooking the picturesque countryside with great views of the 18th hole on the Duchy Course.
Ames Lane, Kilmersdon, Radstock BA3 5TB, UK
Ever wanted to know where Jack and Jill went up the hill? Well look no further than Kilmersdon! This pretty little village off the beaten track isn't far by car from The Old Parsonage and has a wonderful pub, The Joliffe Arms to welcome you once you've explored the village that dates back to at least 1000 years.
The City of Bristol
Bristol is an exciting city straddling the River Avon with a prosperous maritime history. Its former city-centre port is now a cultural hub, the Harbourside, where the M Shed museum explores local social and industrial heritage. The harbour's 19th-century warehouses now contain restaurants, shops and cultural institutions such as contemporary art gallery The Arnolfini.
There's usually something going on every single day in the city. View the official events calendar for inspiration.
Bristol is approximately 12 miles from The Old Parsonage and there's a bus stop right outside to take you!
Highlighted as one of the Times “Best Places to Live in Britain”, Frome is also a welcoming, charming and vibrant place to visit, with a wealth of history, culture and natural beauty.
Packed to the rafters with historical building and beautiful independent shops. Frome is a wonderfully town. It is the perfect destination for discerning tourists looking for something just a little bit different on visits to Somerset. Frome has 3 main festivals during the year, 'The Frome Festival' at the start of July, 'The Agricultural & Cheese Show', mid September and 'Carnival' a few days after. Normally on the first Saturday or Sunday every month from March there is a town market closing many streets selling local produce, to antiques.
Frome is within easy reach being only 12 miles from The Old Parsonage.
1, Hallatrow Business Park, Wells Rd, High Littleton, Bristol BS39 6EX
Founded in 2000, The Bookbarn is one of the largest booksellers in the UK - shipping new, secondhand and rare books from their warehouse just around the corner from The Old Parsonage.
You might even have bought books from them before on sites such as Amazon, Abebooks, eBay, Barnes & Noble, Waterstones Marketplace and Biblio. They also sell books in bulk to interior design studios, film/TV production companies, museums and more.
With a large variety of books old and new making up their stock, you can visit them to browse the vast bookshelves in person. They are one of the only book warehouses in the country to have a bookshop customers can visit year round to browse and enjoy the perks of a wonderful on-site cafe (complete with a woodburner!).
Longleat, Warminster, UK
Longleat is a stunning English stately home and the seat of the Marquesses of Bath. It is also home to the UK's No 1 Safari Park containing a massive variety of animals roaming the grounds while you stay safely in your vehicle. Longleat is well worth a visit if only to explore the grounds if time is short, however we would recommend an early start if planning on the Safari Drive through, plus booking tickets in advance.
Longleat is approximately 21 miles drive from The Old Parsonage and the route will take you through some beautiful villages and towns.
Ashton Court Estate, Long Ashton, Bristol, UK
Bristol International Balloon Fiesta
August 11-14 August 2022
As the largest balloon Fiesta in the UK the Bristol International Balloon Fiesta attracts thousands of spectators and visitors every year.
Hot air balloon rides take place at approximately 6am and 6pm (weather permitting), so you can take your flight in the morning then return to the Fiesta to enjoy the day's entertainment, or spend the day at the Fiesta and enjoy a hot air balloon ride in the evening.
Flying at the Fiesta makes taking a balloon flight extra special. You will take off with up to 100 other balloons from the Fiesta, then enjoy the views as you have up to an hour's flight.
Herriots Bridge, West Harptree, Bristol BS40
Chew Valley Lake
Chew Valley Lake is the largest artificial fresh water in south-west England. The lake was created in the early 1950s and provides much of the drinking water for Bristol and the surrounding area, taking its supply from the Mendip Hills. The lake is surrounded by pretty countryside and in close proximity to the villages of Chew Stoke, Chew Magna and Bishop Sutton. Bristol Water who manage the lake allow dinghy sailing and fishing primarily for trout, there is also a small visitor centre and café.
In the surrounding area you can discover three nature reserves, Burledge Hills, Folly's Farm and Stephen's Vale offering further beuity spots to explore.
The whole area can be walked in a few hours or discovered
Old Army Camp Distillery, Dimmer Lane, Castle Cary, Somerset BA7 7JB, UK
Somerset Spirit Company
From 'GRASS TO GLASS’
A fabulous local distillery run by a family team who are passionate about their unique products using the finest local Somerset ingredients.
They will be welcoming group bookings this year (we hope!) into their distillery to take a tour, learn the tricks of the trade, sample Somerset’s finest spirits and nibble on Wyke Farms award winning cheddar in our distillery bar. You be more than welcome to takeaway their Gin, Vodka and local cheeses either after the tour or by just popping by.
We also stock this Vodka and Gin in our honesty bar if you'd like to sample this at The Parsonage.
Silver Street, Midsomer Norton, Radstock, UK
The Somerset & Dorset Railway Heritage Trust
A great place to visit with the family is this charitable trust with over 1000 members based at Midsomer Norton, located part-way up the 1 in 50 gradient from Radstock to the highest point of the old Somerset & Dorset railway at Masbury.
They have approximately one mile of railway, which currently takes the railway up to the infilled cutting prior to Chilcompton tunnel.
You will discover the restored station buildings, signalbox, goods shed and also two museums: one in the original Victorian Stable Block and the other in our WWII Pill Box (a candidate for the smallest museum in Britain). We have two diesel locomotives, a fully restored Sentinel 0-4-0 vertical-boiler steam locomotive, plus freight and passenger rolling stock and two static buffet coaches open for refreshments. Visit the station gift shop and the second-hand bookshop while you are there and enjoy the atmosphere and exhibits on this once-proud and much-loved holiday route.
Clevedon Road, Clevedon, UK
Noah's Ark Zoo Farm
A favourite day out for all the family, Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm is a family-owned zoo set on a working farm in 100 acres of beautiful, peaceful North Somerset countryside located just 6 miles to the south of Bristol.
They have over 100 different species of animal at Noah's Ark, from gentle Giraffes to carnivorous African Lions, from fluffy Rabbits to giant African Elephants. You you also discover multiple activity zones from a giant maze to diggers to explore.
The zoo was founded by Anthony and Christina Bush, who have lived and worked here together as dairy farmers since 1962 when the original Moat House Farm was part of the Tyntesfield Estate.
The Bath & West Showground, Shepton Mallet, Somerset BA4 6QN, UK
Bath & West Showground
The Bath & West Showground has numerous events running throughout the year and is just 20 minutes by car from The Parsonage.
The showground hosts events all year round from the Royal Bath & West 3 day Festival in June to dog shows, collector fairs and fantastic flea and antique markets. We have ample parking if you are going on a shopping spree and have a van!
Please view the showground's website below for further information and tickets sales.
Claverton Manor, Claverton Down, Bath BA2 7BD, UK
American Museum & Gardens
Explore this hidden gem of a house and gardens found just to the East of Bath which is the only American museum outside of the US. Set in 125 acres with views of the surrounding area this museum will take you on a journey through the 14th to 20th centuries of American cultural objects and art. Each year they host temporary exhibitions as well as special events. Please view their website for further information. Many guests have raved about visiting!