Leave the hotel and head south, passing through Shepton Mallet again and on to Lytes Cary Manor, an intimate medieval manor house (National Trust) with a beautiful Arts and Crafts garden. Originally the family home of Henry Lyte, where he translated the unique Niewe Herbal book on herbal remedies, Lytes Cary was then lovingly restored in the 20th century by Sir Walter Jenner.
Then drive to Mulcheney Abbey, just south of Langport, and once a wealthy Benedictine house, along with the beautiful medieval Priest’s House. From there it’s on to Barrington Court, a Tudor manor house free from any collections or furniture. Barrington was also used as one of the filming locations for Wolf Hall. Head briefly into the market town of Ilminster, and then south to Dawlish Wake and the Perry Cider Mills & Museum.
Continue south, crossing into Dorset, passing Cricket St Thomas (location for To The Manor Born) and onto the exquisite Forde Abbey. Forde Abbey is a privately-owned 12th century Cistercian Abbey, famed for its garden, arboretum and house.
The ancient former market town of Crewkerne gained some beautiful buildings thanks to the late-medieval boom in the wool industry and then rejuvenated in the 18th century with locally-grown flax, used to make sailcloth and canvas, including sails for HMS Victory. Drive through villages constructed of the warm, honey-coloured Ham stone, such as Norton-sub-Hamdon, where much of it was quarried, to the masterpiece of Elizabethan Renaissance architecture, Montacute House, completed in 1601. With its towering walls of glass, the glow of ham stone, and its surrounding gardens it is a place of beauty and wonder. Beautiful gardens also surround the house, and this was one of the main locations for the filming of Wolf Hall.
Pass through the market town of Yeovil, and a little further north is the Haynes Motor Museum, with over 400 vehicles beautifully displayed, dating from 1885 to the present day. Then wind your way northwards, through the lovely towns of Castle Cary and Bruton, back to the hotel.