15 awesome autumn days in Somerset
PUBLISHED: 15:51 03 October 2019 | UPDATED: 15:51 03 October 2019
From fossil hunting and walking in the autumn sunshine, to a trip around the solar system, Rachael Sharpe suggests a host of unforgettable outings in Somerset
Get some fresh sea air and loose yourself searching for the plentiful fossils dotted around Kilve Beach near Watchet. This fascinating stretch of the Jurrasic coast is truly beautiful with imposing limestone cliffs that back the slate and shingle beach, with interesting rock formations sweeping the shoreline. Photograph the fossils but don't take them home.
Crowcombe & Wills Neck Walk
Experience autumn in all of its glory and rural north Somerset at its best with a walk that visits Wills Neck - the highest point in the Quantocks and also explores the picturesque village of Crowcombe.
Route and map available at walkingbritain.co.uk.
Two Moors Festival, which brings classical music of the highest calibre to remarkable spots across Dartmoor and Exmoor, runs from October 11-20. The programme includes inspirational performances, talk, exhibitions and masterclasses and venues include castles, churches and country houses.
Grab your walking boots and hike up what is perhaps the most iconic hill in the South West. Glastonbury Tor - a spiritual magnet for both Pagans and Christians for centuries, is a true wonder and a great walk. At the top you'll be rewarded with a 360 degree panoramic view, which is simply stunning in autumn when the fields and trees are golden.
Walking through the orchards at Sheppy's during autumn is a magical experience - the excitement of the apple harvest and the exquisite colours as the sun shines through the trees. Make a day of it by visiting the fascinating museum collection, put together by Richard Sheppy in the 1970s or book a tour where you'll learn about the orchards, harvest, cider pressing, fermentation and storage.
Apple Day at Chalice Well
Round up your troops and head to Chalice Well, Glastonbury's holy well, on Saturday, October 5 for Apple Day. Celebrate autumn's bounty with apple picking, crushing, juicing and drinking, as well as storytelling, song and celtic folk music.
If you've got little ones, get The Bath Children's Literature Festival, September 27 -October 6, in your diary. The largest of its kind in Europe, you can be assured of an inspiring array of talks and fantastic activities for young book lovers.
Did you know that Somerset is home to a world-class motor museum? The Haynes International Motor Museum, in Sparkford, is home to the UK's largest collection of the greatest cars from around the world. Marvel at more than 400 amazing cars and bikes dating from the late 1800s. From Rolls Royces to the Jaguar XJ220, there is precious metal galore.
Head to Bath's Fashion Museum and lose yourself in a world-class collection of contemporary and historic dress - almost 100,000 items ranging from decorated gloves from Shakespearian times to dresses by today's leading designers. The collection is housed in the magnificent Assembly Rooms - a feast for the eyes themselves.
Set in the Medieval heart of England's smallest city, Wells Cathedral is a gem. The earliest English cathedral built in the Gothic style, it boasts a breathtaking West Front, some of the finest stained glass in Europe and the famous Wells Clock - considered to be the second oldest clock mechanism in Great Britain.
What secrets will you unearth about our prehistoric ancestors at Cheddar Gorge & Caves? This spectacular natural landmark has something for everyone from its majestic cliffs and extraordinary subterranean stalactite show caves to its international centre for caving and rock climbing.
Days out in Bristol
Discover a world of hands-on discovery at We The Curious in Bristol, where collaborative science will engage young and mature minds alike. You can even take a trip around the universe thanks to the UK's first 3D Planetarium, here with with full-surround sound and awe-inspiring sights. With more than 300 exhibits you can be sure of an amazing and full day out.
The world famous Oktoberfest returns to Bristol this year on October 11 and 12, when the Passenger Shed at Brunel's Old Station will be transformed into a Bavarian Wunderland. A must for a taste of authentic German culture, combined with some just-for-fun German stereotyping and general all round debauchery.
Pick a bright and sunny autumn day to visit the Clifton Suspension Bridge, which spans the picturesque Avon Gorge and you'll be rewarded with spectacular views. This Grade I listed structure, which is the symbol of the city of Bristol is one of the world's great bridges and a must-visit. Don't forget your camera.
A brilliant, privately owned museum, dedicated to retail and farming history in the UK! You can't fail to be fascinated by the vast array of memorabilia from the last century. The agricultural collection sits in the Tractor and Farm Museum, while the retail collection has been divided into 'shops' including the grocery store, haberdashery, chemist and sweet shop. A real gem.