Somerset in focus

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Somerset Landscapes

Somerset Levels

Somerset levels from Glastonbury Tor

Officially known as the 'Somerset Levels and Moors', the area covers about 160,000 acres or 650 square kilometres, yet with a low population density.

The main characteristic of the Levels is that they are a relatively level, low lying plain, with an average height of just 20 feet (6 metres) above sea level.

Prone to flooding, especially in winter, the Levels may even have given their name to the county - Sumorsaete - 'the land of the Summer people'.

Somerset Uplands

Somerset uplands - View from Selworthy Beacon

We may think of Somerset of a low lying county but it does have many upland areas of note. In the far west bordering Devon is the enigmatic Exmoor.

The Brendon Hills lie just to the east and are heavily cultivated. the land surface broken by a series of deeply incised streams and rivers.

Further to the east lie the Quantock Hills and the Mendip Hills - both areas of outstanding natural beauty and well worth a visit.


Red Deer on Exmoor

Exmoor was created as a National Park in October 1954 and covers an area of 267 square miles in North Devon and West Somerset.

Its highest point is Dunkery Beacon, some 1,704 ft. above sea level. The entire area offers some spectacular moorland walks, rolling hills and deep coombes. It has a long history and varied wildlife.

Mendips and mining

Cheddar Gorge, Mendip Hills

The Mendip Hills are a range of limestone hills located just to the southwest of the Bristol-Bath conurbation in north east Somerset.

They are an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and effectively mark the northeastern boundary of the Somerset Levels running east to west from Frome to Weston-super-Mare.

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Cornwall in Focus

Devon in Focus

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