MendipsMendips are a range of hills in northern Somerset in the south-west of the United Kingdom. The area is designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
The caves at Cheddar contain traces of Palaeolithic man. Lead, copper, silver were mined from the Bronze Age, through Roman times up until the nineteenth century.
The tops of the Mendips consist mostly of grassland, grazed by sheep and there is a wide variety of plant and animal life for those interested in natural history.
By planeBristol International airport is well served from most of Europe and is a few miles north.
By trainThe nearest railway stations are at Bath, Bristol, Weston super Mare and Frome.
- First Bus operate services in the area.
RoadFairly easily accessible from the M5 motorway, Bristol, Bath, Wells, Weston super Mare.
WalkingMany of the more interesting destinations are only accessible on foot. Walking guides are available from the Mendip Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty service.
- Blackmoor Reserve
- Black Rock Reserve
- Bleadon Hill
- Burrington Combe
- Cheddar Gorge
- Cheddar Caves
- Chew Valley Lake
- Crook Peak
- Dolebury Hillfort
- Ebbor Gorge
- Priddy Green
- Stockhill and Priddy Mineries Reserve
- Wookey Hole
Mendip ClimbA guide to local climbs
address: The Warehouse, Silver Street, CongresburyOffer a variety of activities including climbing, abseiling, caving, hill walking, orienteering.
cheddarclimbingcaving.co.ukCaving, climbing, abseiling, kit hire.
address: Chancellor’s Farm, Plummer’s Lane, PriddyManages several nature reserves in the Mendip Hills, information on website.
phone: +44 1275 332339address: Woodford Lodge, Chew Stoke, BristolOver 260 different species of birds have been recorded, ranging from tiny reed warblers to Bewick's swans. Permits available for some reserve areas, also for fishing the lake.
address: Upper Pitts, Eastwater Lane, PriddyLocal caving club, with a club cottage that can accommodate groups up to 15.
Mendip Caving GroupCharterhouse based group with a cottage that can accommodate 30, hold keys to a variety of caves.
address: The Mineries, Wells Road, PriddyCottage with bunk bed accommodation for 25, some camping accommodation.
Axbridge Caving GroupTraining, advice, equipment, books and videos available, regular organised expeditions. Meet in the Hunters Lodge, 2nd Sunday of month.
address: Charterhouse-on-Mendip, Blagdon, BristolOffers climbing, abseiling, caving, mountain biking, accommodation and campsite.
phone: +44 1761 462338Downloadable walking guides.
address: The Green, Priddy3-day folk music festival in July annually, with craft fair, club tent, camp site, dance events.
Hunters Lodgeaddress: Bristol Road, PriddyReal ale, pub grub, traditional style, open fires. Popular with cavers.
The Queen Victoria Innaddress: Pelting Drove, PriddyReal ales, cider, pub grub, folk evenings.
New Innaddress: The Green, PriddyReal ales, pub grub, bed and breakfast accommodation.
address: Bromley Road, Stanton DrewReal ale, beer garden, food, handy for Stanton Drew stone circle and Chew Valley Lake.
The Crownaddress: High Street, West HarptreeGood beer and cider and homecooked food. In the heart of Chew Valley at the foot of the Mendips.
Self Catering Somerset
address: Binegar GreenSelf-catering Somerset holiday accommodation. Spindle cottage is a 17th-century cottage high on the Mendip hills. Set in a garden complete with summerhouse, gazebo and a conservatory. Step inside the cottage and you find a world of make believe with carvings of mushrooms, spiders web, birds and mice in oak beams and stone work.
address: The Square, Shipham, Nr CheddarTwelve en suite rooms, 3-star rated. Restaurant and bar.
address: Wookey, WellsBed and Breakfast adjacent to a working water-powered flour mill.
address: Barton, Winscombe, Nr CheddarSelf-catering accommodation Set in 2 acres of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Barton, near Cheddar.
address: CheddarTouring caravans, camping, some lodges, swimming pool in summer, children's play area, convenience shop, restaurant and bar.
Anela B&Baddress: Lower North Street, CheddarA friendly B&B located in the very centre of Cheddar village - convenient for all facilities and just a short, level walk from the Gorge.