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One week SW England for a group with diverse interests

One week SW England for a group with diverse interests

Jul 31st, 2014, 10:10 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 95
One week SW England for a group with diverse interests

My husband, brother and I will have a week together in the UK in July next year. We've been to the UK many times and have seen all the major "must-see" regions like the Lakes, the Cotswolds, Oxford, Yorkshire, Bath etc. We spent five weeks in London this year so don't need a city visit.

For this trip we're looking for an interesting country base for the week, with easy access to Heathrow and potential for day trips. Husband and I like museums and art; brother likes castles, forts and pubs and is not big on long walks. I'm extremely interested in fossil hunting on the Jurassic Coast.

I am thinking about basing ourselves in Winchester with day trips to Arundel Castle, Portsmouth, Lyme Regis, Fishbourne, Stourhead, Chideock, Charmouth Heritage Coast Centre, Avebury (we've seen Stonhenge).

This itinerary looks OK but is not exciting me. I'm very keen to get some other suggestions please.
mbloggs is offline  
Aug 1st, 2014, 03:06 AM
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 6,040
Think about going (and basing yourself)further west, i.e. Devon and Cornwall. Winchester is not SW England. Exeter might work better as a central point.
RM67 is offline  
Aug 1st, 2014, 03:46 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,664
The specific places you mentioned would be described as along the "South Coast" of England, not the "South West" (which means Devon and Cornwall). If that's what you want to see, there's no reason to base yourself further west - Winchester would be fine.

You've come up with a good starting list of places but there are many more depending on your interests.

The Isle of Wight beaches are well known to fossil hunters and it would certianly make a good day trip out of, say Winchester (you can take the ferry from either Portsmouth or Southampton).

Another top attraction for many in this region is the New Forest national park (it rarely gets mentioned for some unknown reason on Fodors but has some charming villages, pubs, museums, wildlife and gentle walks).
Gordon_R is offline  
Aug 1st, 2014, 05:08 AM
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 27
Are you planning on renting a car for the week?

Most of the places mentioned are accessible by train easily enough but would involve walking, buses or taxis to get to your final destinations so for a party of three a car would probably be more economic and convenient to have a car (except for IOW unless you find a cheap ferry deal)

Most of the areas you are considering would be actually be considered South East - The SW starts with Dorset.

Devon and Cornwall would be considered by many to be one of Englands 'must see' regions and well worth considering but too far to drive if coming straight off an international flight - split the journey west up a bit.
MymsMan is offline  
Aug 1st, 2014, 06:51 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 63,201
I'd consider basing either someplace like Lymington (Not the SW but good for the New Forest, IoW, Beaulieu, Bucklers Hard, and as far as the Dorset coast) - or - somewhere in Dorset or South Devon.
janisj is online now  
Aug 1st, 2014, 05:05 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 95
Thanks for all the input. MymsMan we will be renting a car, picking it up and returning it at Heathrow.

Sorry if I've confused people - I do know the South West region means Devon and Cornwall, but I was actually just speaking geographically, meaning that we intend to go south of London and then head west. How far we go depends on what's there to interest us! We may indeed end up in Exeter as RM67 suggests.

Thanks for your suggestions janisj. I had looked at Lyme Regis as well but will investigate Lymington. However I am most interested in your suggestion about Dorset, which seems to be right in the middle and would give us access to most of the things people are suggesting. Does anyone have a recommendation for a town/village/B&B/farmstay in the area? Because our time together is so short, we'd like to stay in the one spot for the whole week and just do day trips out in the car.
mbloggs is offline  

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