There is evidence that settlers appeared in Somerset during the Palaeolithic period and there are a number of archaeological sites in the caves of the Mendip Hills and at Cheddar Gorge. Bones have been found that date back to 12,000 BC and even a complete skeleton was discovered which is believed to be from around 7150 BC, which was given the name “Cheddar Man” (because of its location).
There are many other examples of these earlier times, but quite a few of later events in history, such as the Roman occupation, Anglo-Saxons and Normans. Somerset also witnessed a number of battles, especially during the English Civil War.
Industries in the area have varied over the years and included coal mining, agriculture, sheep and cattle farming (for wool and cheese production), basketry and apple orchards for cider.
Somerset is perhaps best known for its cheddar cheese and strong cider.
In addition to the scenery, there are many things to see and do in Somerset. The Brean Leisure Park is the largest in the south-west and ideal for a family day out. You may also find the following of interest: The Helicopter Museum (the only one dedicated to helicopters), West Somerset Railway Station (Britain’s longest ‘heritage’ railway), Wells Cathedral, Taunton Castle, Glastonbury Abbey (the burial place of King Arthur), The Grand Pier in Weston-super-Mare, Cheddar Gorge Cheese Company, Hestercombe Gardens, Cheddar Showcaves and Gorge, Dunster Castle, Butlins Family Entertainment Resort and The Bishop’s Palace in Wells (to name just a few).
Entertainment can be found in theatres, cinemas, nightclubs and pubs, and restaurants include the Demetris Taverna (Greek) in Weston-super-Mare, Reeves Restaurant in Dunster and the Clavelshay Barn in Bridgwater.
There is no shortage of Guest Houses, self-catering apartments and B&Bs, and plenty of excellent locations for camping. Hotels include the Spears Cross Hotel in Dunster and the family run Harmony Poynt Hotel in Weston-super-Mare.