Somerset is an interesting and varied county. It has the Levels criss-crossed by rhynes, with quiet villages and farms, moors and nature reserves. Remnants of the willow and peat industries remain and, turning into quiet lanes, you can spot the old war-time pill box guarding an inland waterway coming in from the sea. The county has its coastline with traditional sea-side towns, long sandy beaches, and huge variation between high and low tides. Somerset is bordered by hills, the Quantocks in the west feeding through into the Brendons and onwards to Exmoor. Northwards are the Mendips with Wells nestled nearby and, on the way there, Glastonbury around its famous Tor.
Thread your way through Cheddar and onwards to the lakes at Chew Valley, dotted with sailing boats, bird sanctuaries and places to stroll. Lastly to the south, are the Blackdown Hills designated, like the others, as an area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Berrow and Brean beaches (12miles away) feature sand dunes, a shipwreck and the opportunities for horse riding along the sands.

Canal and river trails start in Bridgwater and The West Somerset Coastal Path runs from the hamlet of Steart to Minehead. The National Trust owns a number of sites, including Brent Knoll, Brean Down, Cheddar Gorge and Glastonbury Tor. Areas to walk in the Quantocks include Lydeard Hill, and The Great Wood.


There are several nature reserves nearby. The RSPB has reserves at Greylake and Ham, which has the largest reed beds in the country and is a roost for Starlings and their murmurations, an amazing wildlife spectacle and a true wonder of the natural world. England’s largest heronry is located at Swell Wood. Top bird-watching locations can also be found at Shapwick Heath, Bridgwater Bay and Westway Moor.


There are a number of National Trust properties and gardens within easy reach of Pool House. These include Coleridge Cottage, Clevedon Court, Stembridge Tower Mill, King John’s Hunting Lodge, Fyne Court and Barrington Court. In addition, there is Cannington Walled Garden and Hestercombe Gardens which comprise three gardens developed over three centuries. Hauser and Wirth in Bruton, offers new and innovative exhibitions of contemporary art, along with landscaped gardens and special events. Wells, the smallest city in England, has several buildings of historical interest including the Cathedral, the Bishop’s Palace and a cobbled marketplace which features a market twice a week. In Bristol, there are several of Brunel’s sites.