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South Somerset Cycleway

122

   KILOMETRES

7h

TIME

1222

  METRES CLIMBED

80

MILES

The South Somerset Cycleway was created to guide you through the lanes and villages that make up this rural area. Initially well signed with rugged metal signs, these have been gradually lost but the route remains. In recent years SUSTRANS have taken on the signage so you'll see blue 30 signs along the route.
The ride can be tackled as a single long day ride or as a weekend break. The following breaks the route down into eight sections, describing what you will see along the way.


Overall Map

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Eight Sections - All at once, or in parts, you choose

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Yeovil Junction to Sherborne

A flat start to the ride, the detour through Bradford Abbas is worth doing. Entering Sherborne takes you along a rough track that lasts for 200 metres. Finding your way through Sherborne is the most challenging part of the whole trip. There are the occasional old metal signs to help 

Highlights
Sherborne 
From an old Abbey to a ruined castle

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Sherborne to Castle Cary

A delightful start as you exit Sherborne to gently climb a quiet lane towards Sandford Orcas. The ride continues to undulate as you cycle quiet lanes with some good views especially around the Cadbury Castle area. There are a surprising number of good pubs along this section

Highlight
Cadbury Castle
Take time to walk to the top of this Iron Age Fort
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Castle Cary to Somerton

A flatter section as you follow the River Cary out of Castle Cary. Crossing the A37 (traffic lights) leads to a more undulating section through pretty villages. The long valley road towards Somerton is a highlight before taking the old road into the former County town of Wessex

Highlight
The pretty ride along the River Cary

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Somerton to South Petherton

A quiet loop road through quiet countryside takes you to the lovely town of Langport with its High Street full of lovely independant shops.
The Parrett Cycleway is a converted railway line that is 2km long. The surface is OK for road bikes and is loose gravel. It's used by walkers as well
Mulchelney has an impressive ruined abbey and a Priests House both of which are worth a visit
The road south from here is pretty flat as you finish in the small town at South Petherton

Highlight
Mulchelney Abbey

South Petherton to Ilminster

Through Barrington and into the glorious Dillington Estate, where you are cycling through parkland. A dedicated cyclepath takes you out of the park through the old gates. This avoids Ilminster which is a shame, so take the time to explore this lovely town

Highlight
Dillington Estate

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Ilminster to Merriott

You are now in deepest South Somerset as you meandre through the lanes surrounded by agriculture
Dowlish Wake and Hinton St George are pretty villages on route

Highlight
The gentle scenery

Merriott to Montacute

The ride to Stoke-sub-Hamdom isn't a highlight. However the climb over Ham Hill definately is. It's well worth the effort as the views are fantastic. The ride across the top is lovely as well before a steep narrow descent into Montecute

Highlight
Ham Hill

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Montecute to Yeovil Junction

The last section and to be honest is the least interesting. However the other seven sections more than make up for this.

Highlight
That you have completed a beautiful 80 mile route

Along the way

Below are a list of things to see, places to eat and places to stay


                  Places of interest

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Yes this ride can be done in a day, but there is a lot to visit on this ride
Muchelney
The Priests House - National Trust https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/priests-house-muchelney
Mulchelney Abbey - English Heritage https://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/muchelney-abbey/
East Lambrook
East Lambrook Manor Gardens http://www.eastlambrook.com/pages/  
Montecute
Montecute House https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/montacute-house   
Montecute TV, Radio and Toy Museum http://www.montacutemuseum.co.uk/   
Sherborne
Sherborne Old Castle - English Heritage https://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/sherborne-old-castle/   
Sherborne Abbey https://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/sherborne-old-castle/   
Sherborne Castle and gardens https://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/sherborne-old-castle/  
South Cadbury
Cadbury Castle - Free Access https://www.visitsomerset.co.uk/discover-somerset/inspiration/history-and-heritage/cadbury-castle

           Places to eat and drink

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Shops
There are a good sprinkling all around this route
Pubs
There are quite a few on this route
Bakeries
South Petherton has a small bakery, as does Langport
Cafes
Quite a few to choose from. Sherborne and Langport have a few to chose from. Castle Cary doesn't. There is one of note.
The Feed Station in Merriott caters for cyclists https://www.thefeedstationmerriott.co.uk/

                     Somewhere to stay

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                  Getting there

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Train Stations
Yeovil Junction is the starting point, however why not start at Castle Cary or even Sherborne

Car Parks
There are lots of places to leave a car, I've just highlighted a few on the route

Useful Websites

Towns on the way


Sherborne - A very detailed website
https://www.sherbornedorset.co.uk/


Resources

This route was heavily promoted 10 years ago and a very good leaflet was produced
South Somerset Cycleway
Just in case this link disappears, it's also here
South Somerset Cycleway

GPX Route
RidewithGPS







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