Although I was born in London, I was brought up in Somerset and always like to go back when I get the chance. Here are some of the sites and activities that I would recommend.
Camping and Caravan Site - The Old Oaks Touring Park, Wick Farm, Wick. Tel: 01458 831437. Directions: Turn left off of the A361 (Glastonbury - Shepton Mallet) at the signpost to Wick.
General Overview - This is an excellent site which has been very well landscaped and offers lovely views of the surrounding countryside. Well run and a lovely ‘get away from it all' retreat.
Here are some of the facilities:-
very large pitches (even during peak periods)
a choice of areas in which to pitch depending on your preferences - the orchard; a camping paddock (no children allowed here, if you want a bit of peace and quiet!); the walnut paddock circle - which is very pretty, but no ball games allowed ; the walnut paddock terraces and the top field. The top field is very large and caravans and tents are pitched around the edge, leaving ample space for football, cricket, rounders or whatever takes your fancy!
well stocked shop and off licence
extremely clean toilet and shower blocks (free hot water) with free hair dryer
washing machines and ironing board + iron
pool room with two pool tables (children over 12 and adults only)
family room with table tennis table, table football and two picnic tables
play area - quite basic, but does have a large sand pit for younger children
fishing pond and duck pond
dog wash and dog exercise area
Things to do!
First on your list must be taking the footpath from the site to the top of Glastonbury Tor - approx. 0.75 mile. You will be rewarded for your effort with fantastic views of the surrounding area. If you're lucky, you may have a talk from the volunteer warden, who will tell you some of the history of the tor and may share some of his personal experiences with you - the day we went he had seen some fairies at dawn in a local wood. He assured us he didn't 'smoke' or drink. How much you believe is entirely up to you!!
The town of Glastonbury is also worth a visit - it is quite pretty and definitely the place to go if you are into crystals and natural healing. There is also a ruined abbey to visit.
Cheddar Gorge is also a must - reputedly the best caves in Britain - make sure you take your camera! A combined ticket covers you for the caves, an open top bus ride and Jacob's Ladder - which is quite a climb! Even if you don't like caves, it is still worth a visit - there are lots of little shops and you can see cheese being made. You can also buy plenty of Cheddar Cheese - of course!!
Wookey Hole - another cave, but very different from those at Cheddar. If you want stalagmites and stalactites, this is not the place to go. However, the cave is quite impressive in places and at various parts you can actually see the river flowing through it. Included in the admission price - watch how paper was made, find your way through a mirror maze (why is it only the adults who go around looking totally stupid in these things with their arms splayed out in all directions?) and look at your funny reflection in the ‘underwater mirrors'. Adults seem to enjoy the latter almost as much as the children!
The Clarks Village in Street. This is the place to go for bargains! The first time we went, we bought a parking ticket for four hours, thinking that would be ample, especially as we had the children with us. How wrong we were! We actually ran out of time and had to hurry back to the car! They sell everything here from Black & Decker equipment and kitchenware to clothes. We mustn't of course forget the shoes - lots and lots of shoes! Thomas and Matthew like the ‘Cadbury Shop' most of all - no prizes for guessing why! I prefer the Thorntons Chocolate shop - some real bargains to be had here! Paul as usual, likes any shops with electronic gadgets in them and anything that is a real bargain.
Well, these are a few of the things to do, which are very close to the site. Have fun and if you need to relax and have somebody do the cooking for you, make sure you visit The Camelot Inn. You can find it on the left of the A39 about ten minutes from the site. It's a very pretty inn with a large beer garden. It has good play facilities for the children and even had a bouncy castle up when we visited it. There is also an aviary in the garden, with some rabbits and guinea pigs sharing the ‘downstairs' accommodation! Little children will love this!
There is an excellent menu with a good choice of vegetarian options - not just vegetable lasagne! A separate menu for younger children is also available. Depending on what time of year you visit, you may choose to eat in the pub, the conservatory or the garden.
We were made to feel most welcome and will definitely be re-visiting every time we return to Glastonbury!
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