Christmas at Stourhead

Christmas illuminations seem to have been particularly popular this year. Just in the area around Bristol I’ve seen adverts for illuminations at Westonbirt Arboretum, Longleat and Stourhead. I think I first received an email about the Christmas at Stourhead illuminations back in June – long before I’d begun to even start thinking about Christmas. However, it was instantly something I was interested in. I’d never been to a light installation before and it sounded like it would be a fun thing to do so we found a free weekend and booked our tickets. View Post

A festive day out at Bath Christmas Market

The best part of the festive season, for me, is Christmas Markets. With the smell of mulled spices and caramelised nuts in the air, and stalls adorned with unique Christmas decorations, there’s nothing that captures the spirit of Christmas better for me. My first experience of a ‘proper’ European Christmas market was when I was 12, and I can still remember the feeling of enchantment on my first evening. I get a similar feeling when I go to markets now, although I usually have a better idea of what to expect. Although I have a list of European markets a mile long that I’d like to visit, this year we stuck closer to home and decided to check out what festive delights Bath has to offer. View Post

Exploring the Southern Cotswolds: Castle Combe, Tetbury and more

The Cotswolds is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty which stretches across parts of Southern England. It’s characterised by picturesque villages made of yellow Cotswold stone and is what many people might think of as ‘typical England’. Although I’ve heard lots about the Cotswolds, and seen plenty of pictures of some of its famous villages, it isn’t an area that I’ve explored extensively. However, with some recent time off I was determined to change that, particularly as the Cotswolds are within surprisingly easy reach of Bristol. A number of locations across the Southern Cotswolds were what I had in mind, and I’ve shared a few in this guide. View Post

Taking the West Somerset Railway to Minehead

I’ve never really classed myself as a train enthusiast. I enjoy travelling by train, and I do find there is something rather magical about steam trains, but I’m not mad about them. However, when I found out that part of The Blogger’s Retreat Visit Somerset trip was a ride on the West Somerset Railway, I did get a little bit excited. There’s something rather quaint about heritage railways that makes them rather appealing. I’m not an expert, but in my experience the stations are usually very pretty, the railway is usually run by volunteers, and it’s a lovely way to watch the countryside go by. The West Somerset Railway certainly fitted that description! View Post

The SS Great Britain and Being Brunel

The SS Great Britain was one of the attractions that I was taken to see the first time I visited Bristol, five years ago. I remember really enjoying going around the ship and seeing all the different areas with added sounds and smells which brought the ship to life. I have to admit that getting to dress up was also a fun activity and added to the immersive experience. Although I had a great time, having been once I hadn’t returned as there are so many other things in Bristol that I am yet to see and do. However, recently the opportunity came up to visit the new Being Brunel museum on its opening weekend which seemed like the perfect time to reacquaint myself with the ship. View Post