Unique Experiences in Somerset

Unique Experiences in Somerset

Home to some of the oldest cities and most beautiful countryside in the UK, the county of Somerset is a scintillating treat. A land carved by ancient glaciers and long-gone rivers and curated by history, it is a natural marvel and cultural melting pot and somewhere that can be enjoyed throughout the seasons.

To seek out the most unique experiences in Somerset, discover our curated guide to the best things to do. From private spa experiences to picnics between land and sea to orchestral symphonies in historic cathedrals, here’s all you need to know.

Enjoy a Hot Air Balloon over Glastonbury

A hot air balloon drifting in the air above the countryside

For the most beautiful introduction to the picturesque pastures and hollyhock-framed hamlets of Somerset, why not treat yourself to the best view around? Affording awe-inspiring vistas and the dreamiest journey, Virgin hot air balloon rides propose the most magical airborne adventures. Head to Glastonbury to depart and let the experts command the air as the world drifts away below your feet and sweeping panoramas unfold. From local highlights such as Glastonbury Tor, St Michael’s Tower, Greylake, and the site of Glastonbury Festival to the sprawling countryside beyond, an array of delightful sights promise to take your breath away.

Bake with Bertinet Kitchen

Richard Bertinet Cookery School in Bath

Should you be seeking a unique experience in Somerset, turn your attention to the Bertinet Kitchen Cookery School. An artisan cookery school in the heart of the historic city of Bath, Bertinet Kitchen offers engaging cooking and baking classes led by award-winning chef, Richard Bertinet. Whether you are seeking to master the art of breadmaking, perfect your pastries, or explore international cuisine, each class provides an enriching and immersive platform from which to learn.

Rock Climb in Cheddar Gorge

An aerial view of the spectacular Cheddar Gorge

For a novel way to explore one of Somerset’s most famous natural highlights, pursue an exhilarating day of adventure rock climbing. Under the expert leadership of Rocksport’s tutors and guides, you are invited to scale some of the magnificent cliffs of the Cheddar Gorge and see the sights from a whole new perspective. Climb your way under belay and bask in the views, and the achievement, before being safely guided to flat ground again. Encouraging you to unleash your inner Chris Bonnington, this adventure is suitable for all those aged above thirteen years old. Once you’ve completed your climb, venture over to the Cheddar Gorge Cheese Company nearby to sample “the only cheddar made in Cheddar”.

Picnic in the Valley of the Rocks

A view over the sloping cliffs of the Valley of the Rocks in Exmoor National Park

The Valley of Rocks is one of Exmoor National Park’s most striking natural features. Nestled on the coast between Somerset and Devon, this deep valley is hugged by bracken-brushed valley slopes on one side and towering cliffs on the other. Exuding a cocooned and otherworldly aesthetic, this fairytale location is well worth the journey beyond the official Somerset border and is perfect for magical picnics under open skies. Making this site all the more intriguing are the resident herds of wild goats who make themselves at home amongst the swaying ferns and pockets of sea thrift.

Indulge at Palette and Pasture

Multi-coloured scoops of Somerset gelato in recyclable pots by Palette and Pasture

Somerset is beloved for its idyllic rural swathes, crisscrossed with verdant fields and dairy pastures. At home amongst the gorgeous Somerset countryside is Palette and Pasture at Pyle Farm, a unique attraction near Frome. A small working farm, this site is well-known amongst locals and visitors alike for its welcoming ice cream parlour, where scoops of its moreish, zero-miles Somerset gelato are served for delectation. All made on the farm, each of Palette and Pasture’s ice cream flavours promise authentic, wholesome tastes and can be savoured on their own, in sundaes, as milkshakes, or with waffles.  

Sip at Wraxall Vineyard

A view of Wraxhall Vineyard visitor centre through leafy vines in Somerset

Wraxall Vineyard near Shepton Mallet is one of the oldest vineyards in the South West and promises a deliciously unique experience in Somerset. Operating since 1974, the vineyard’s team harnesses five decades of knowledge, experience and expertise to produce its award-winning English wines on sun-kissed valley slopes. On a balmy day, head over to uncover the sublime wine and spectacular views and learn all about the processes involved in creating Wraxall’s still and sparkling vintages. Visits can be enjoyed as part of guided vineyard tours and tasting experiences, and can also be combined with one of the vineyard’s regular events, such as feast nights and summer sundowners.

Relish Exclusive Use of Thermae Bath Spa

The beautiful pool for exclusive use at Thermae Bath Spa

Enjoy exclusive use of the Thermae Bath Spa and savour magical moments in an open-air thermal bath. Complete with its own changing room, this dreamy pool in the centre of Bath can be enjoyed as a complementary experience to the nearby New Royal Bath’s luxury facilities for the ultimate pamper day. Watch crystalline waters cascade from the spring and listen to the lullaby of the poolside fountain before wrapping in a fluffy towel. Once rejuvenated and restored, you can complete your spa experience with a luxury afternoon tea in The Georgian Pump Room next to the nearby Roman Baths. Sit under a glistening chandelier and listen to the lilting tunes of the restaurant’s pianist and enjoy the beautiful setting of The Pump Room, once frequented by Jane Austen and Charles Dickens.

Listen to Orchestra at Wells Cathedral

The stunning interiors of Wells Cathedral in Somerset

Wells Cathedral is one of the most famous cathedrals in the UK and is renowned for its formidable Gothic style. To relish one of the most unique experiences in Somerset, explore the cathedral by day, and in the evening, return to experience one of the incredible events hosted there throughout the year. Promising the most spellbinding sojourns in Somerset, orchestral events are hosted between the impressive walls of Wells Cathedral and are especially memorable. From the enchanting music of Harry Potter to soul-stirring Christmas songs played by candlelight, all manner of moving orchestral performances promise to captivate the heart and mind.

Watch the Sunset from Glastonbury Tor

A view of St Michael's Tower atop Glastonbury Tor at sunset

The five-hundred-foot Glastonbury Tor is one of the most famous landmarks in the South West and beyond, topped by the remains of the fifteenth-century, Grade I listed St Michael's Tower. Commanding an incredible aspect, the naked eye can see as far as the Somerset Levels to Dorset, Wiltshire and as far as Wales from atop the tor on a clear day. Naturally, if there’s somewhere unmissable to visit during a luxury retreat to Somerset, it’s this iconic tor. Fold up some blankets and a flask of something soothing and head up to the summit to catch the sunset (or the sunrise) and bask in the spectacular scenery bathed in a golden glow.

Dine at a Menu-less Michelin Star Restaurant

A delicious amuse-bouche served by Osip restaurant in Bruton

One of the leading Michelin star restaurants in Somerset, Osip in Bruton offers a heavenly experience for culinary connoisseurs. Making it all the more special is the fact that this Michelin star venue also provides a menu-less dining experience. Embodying the ethos of a country cottage kitchen with the polished refinery of an award-winning institution, it uses fresh ingredients to curate completely new courses each day. In fact, many of the ingredients used are grown on the restaurant’s own plots of land for real farm-to-fork freshness. Secure a reservation for lunch or dinner and anticipate mouth-watering set meals inspired by the seasons and crafted with Michelin expertise.

Watch a Show at Bath’s Theatre Royal

The beautiful façade of Theatre Royal Bath at sundown

Overflowing with history and absorbing tales, the famed Theatre Royal Bath is one of the oldest and most beautiful working theatres in the UK. With roots dating back to the turn of the nineteenth century, it has been wowing audiences for centuries and continues to be a heartbeat of arts and entertainment in the city. For a unique experience in Somerset, peruse its programme of events and take a seat in one of its three auditoria (The Main House, Ustinov Studio and family-friendly Egg Theatre). From the scripts come tales of sorrow, romance, action, adventure, comedy and more, ready to inspire all those who gaze upon the stage.

Feeling inspired for an unforgettable sojourn? Uncover our luxury cottages in Somerset


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