Montacute House is a stunningly well-preserved example of English Renaissance design and architecture. This Elizabethan extravaganza of towering walls pierced with innumerable windows, and set in beautiful formal gardens, is a delightful spot to visit for the day from your Somerset hotel or local B&B in the Yeovil area.
Hotels in Somerset for Montacute House and Gardens
Montacute House was the creation of Sir Walter Phelips and was finished in 1601. The local ham stone was used by skilled craftsmen for its construction, directed by the master mason William Arnold. One of the showpieces of Montacute House is the (very!) Long Gallery. In fact it's the longest example of this type of gallery in England, and was all the rage at the time. The 60 or more Tudor and later Elizabethan portraits hanging here are all on loan from London's National Portrait Gallery and represent some of the grander figures of a lost age and world. The gardens that surround the main buildings are open all year round, perfect for pleasant strolls in summer and winter alike.
Stay at a local hotel or guesthouse such as The Bower Inn in Bridgwater or the Burnthouse Farm B&B in nearby Highbridge. They make comfortable bases for a thoroughly enjoyable visit to Montacute House.
Attractions in Somerset near Montacute House
After having a good look around Montacute House and gardens, there are several other historic sites in the immediate neighbourhood to visit when you pass through Yeovil on your way to your Somerset Hotel or B&B. Stoke Priory is famous for its collection of farm buildings that date back to the medieval period. You can also see England's last surviving thatched windmill at Stembridge Tower Mill close by. Another interesting medieval survivor is the Priest's House, a domestic dwelling with many of the original features still intact.
Based at a local hotel in Somerset, or passing through the Yeovil area on your way elsewhere, Montacute House makes a good destination both for its gardens and the period collections in the house itself. The area has plenty of other attractions, and the Yeovil countryside is some of the most beautiful in the United Kingdom.