There are many historic houses in Somerset, here area a few:
The Bishop’s Palace and Gardens have been home to the Bishops of Bath and Wells for over 800 years and this stunning medieval palace is open for all to enjoy. Surrounded by a breath-taking moat visitors can cross a flagstone drawbridge, walk under the portcullis and experience a true hidden gem in the heart of the City of Wells. There are 14 acres of outstanding, RHS Partner gardens to explore, including the beautiful well pools from which the city takes its name. The Bishop’s Palace dates from the early-thirteenth century when Bishop Jocelin Trotman, the first Bishop to hold the title Bishop of Bath and Wells, received a crown licence to build a residence and deer park on land to the south of the Cathedral of St Andrew.
Lytes Cary Manor is an intimate medieval manor house with a beautiful Arts and Crafts garden where you can imagine living. The chapel was built around 1343 and the house gradually expanded over the next three centuries by the Lytes family who owned it until the 18th century before it fell into disrepair. It was lovingly restored in the 20th century by Sir Walter Jenner who restored the house to a 17th century style and also added on a new west wing.
Montacute House is an Elizabethan Renaissance masterpiece completed in 1601. The Long Gallery is the longest of its kind in England and houses over 60 Tudor and Elizabethan portraits on loan from the National Portrait Gallery. The beautiful gardens surrounding Montacute House are constantly changing, filling the house with scent in summer and providing an atmospheric backdrop for a winter walk.
Muchelney Abbey, which lies two miles south of Langport, was once a landmark in the Somerset Levels and still has much to offer its visitors – history lovers in particular will enjoy this fascinating site which was once a wealthy Benedictine house and the second oldest religious foundation in Somerset, but as part of the dissolution the abbey’s principal buildings were demolished by Henry VIII in 1538. Visitors can still see the clearly laid out foundations of the abbey, parts of the richly decorated cloister walk and thatched monks’ lavatory – the only one of its kind in Britain. The 16th-century abbots’ house remains intact with its magnificent rooms, and site finds are on display illustrating monastic life. With plenty of rooms to explore, this is an ideal day out whatever the weather.
Tyntesfield. After buying Tyntes Place for his growing family in 1843, William Gibbs went about making it his own. He remodelled the exterior of the simple regency house into the Gothic style that exists today and had the interiors were richly decorated and furnished by the country’s leading craftsmen. Each of the following three generations left their mark on Tyntesfield, adding to what had been done before and incorporating the latest advances in technology to create a family home that was comfortable and efficient. With 540 acres of parkland, woodland, formal gardens and kitchen gardens to explore, there’s plenty to do in the outdoors at Tyntesfield.