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Southwestern England - Discover The Beauty Of The West Country

Southwestern England has the mildest climate in England, one of the most attractive rural areas in England, and has been the most sought-after holiday region in England for 150 years.

Draught cider and clotted cream teas are popular in the southwest. Cob-and-thatched homes, fishing communities, and quiet rivers abound. The region encompasses the majority of the West Country.

Southwestern England Fast Facts

South West England is one of England's nine recognized regions. Bristol, Cornwall (including the Isles of Scilly), Dorset, Devon, Gloucestershire, Somerset, and Wiltshire make up the county.

St Michaels Mount Cornwall
St Michaels Mount Cornwall

Bath, Bristol, Bournemouth, Cheltenham, Exeter, Gloucester, Plymouth, and Swindon are among the region's cities and big towns. It is the largest of England's nine regions, covering 9,200 square miles (23,800 km2), however it has the third-lowest population, with around five million individuals.

The West Country and much of the ancient kingdom of Wessex are included in the region.

Dartmoor and Exmoor National Parks (a tiny portion of the New Forest is also included) and four World Heritage Sites: Stonehenge, the Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape, the Jurassic Coast, and the City of Bath.

Gloucestershire's northern boundary, near Chipping Campden, is as close to the Scottish border as it is to the tip of Cornwall. The region boasts the longest coastline of any English region by far.

Following the demise of the South West Regional Assembly in 2008 and the Government Office in 2011, South West Councils now provide regional local government coordination.

The West of England Combined Authority includes Bristol, South Gloucestershire, Bath and North East Somerset.

The region is well-known for its folklore, which includes the legend of King Arthur and Glastonbury Tor, as well as its traditions and rituals.

Cornwall has its own language, Cornish, and is considered a Celtic nation by some. Cheddar cheese, which originated in the Somerset village of Cheddar; Devon cream teas, crabs, Cornish pasties, and cider are all popular in the South West.

The Eden Project, Aardman Animations, the Glastonbury Festival, the Bristol International Balloon Fiesta, trip hop music, and Cornwall's surfing beaches are all located here.

The region has also been home to some of Britain's most famous writers, including Daphne du Maurier, Agatha Christie, and Enid Blyton, who all set several of their works here, and Thomas Hardy's Wessex, which is the backdrop for many of his best-known novels.

South West England Map

The majority of the region is situated on the South West Peninsula, between the English and Bristol Channels.

South West England Map and its territories
South West England Map and its territories

It has the longest coastline of any English region, stretching for nearly 700 miles (1,130 km). Because of its natural value, much of the shore is currently protected from future significant development, which contributes to the region's attractiveness to tourists and locals.

The region is geologically separated into igneous and metamorphic west and sedimentary east, with the dividing line slightly to the west of the River Exe.

The scenery of Cornwall and West Devon is characterized by rocky coastlines and high moorland, particularly in Bodmin Moor and Dartmoor.

These are caused by the granite and slate that lie beneath the area. High Willhays on Dartmoor is the region's highest peak, at 2,038 feet (621 m).

Exmoor National Park in North Devon brings together the slates of the west and the limestones of the east. The county's name was given to the Devonian period due to the variety of rocks of similar ages encountered.

The Southwest is a lengthy peninsular characterized by dismal moorlands and rocky outcroppings.

Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire covers the majority of the middle region of southern England. The Severn, Britain's longest river, empties into the Bristol channel, and the Avon, which flows through Bristol, are the region's primary rivers.

High Willhays, at 621 metres, is the region's highest peak. It is Dartmoor's highest point. Salisbury Plain takes up the majority of the middle region of southern England.

It has an area of around 300 square miles (775 square kilometers) and is drained to the south by the River Avon. Sailsbury Plain is a barren chalk plateau devoid of trees, with much of it utilized as sheep pasture.

Top 5 South West England Places To Visit

Wiltshire

As soon as you get in Wiltshire, set your camera to panorama mode.

Stonehenge in Wiltshire
Stonehenge in Wiltshire

You should include photos of the lush, green hills, valleys, and plains. Wiltshire has several wonderful spots to visit with your family.

The druid ring of standing stones at Stonehenge, or the massive white horse engraved into Cherhill, are two of the most photographed attractions.

On the gardens around the pointy gothic cathedral in busy market town Salisbury, mingle with moonrakers, the affectionate nickname for Wiltshire inhabitants.

Ridgeways wind through this southwest county, connecting Iron Age hill forts and agricultural lanes. Sturdy walking boots are required.

Gloucestershire

Elegant spa and market towns, as well as elegant residences amidst undulating, verdant landscapes. Hello and welcome to Gloucestershire.

A stunning view of houses in Gloucestershire
A stunning view of houses in Gloucestershire

Trek amid the honey-hued clusters that comprise the picture-perfect Cotswold villages, or cycle off the main path through oaks and beeches in the vast Forest of Dean — keep an eye out for wild boar and roe deer!

Gloucestershire towns are a popular family day excursion, offering glimpses of regency high life and medieval market squares.

The sporting calendar in this west county is jam-packed with high-end horse races, county cricket, and even an annual Double Gloucester cheese rolling. There is never a shortage of things to do in Gloucestershire.

Bath

Bath wears its colorful heritage proudly, so be prepared to be impressed.

An amazing view of Bath England
An amazing view of Bath England

You'll feel like you're riding in a horse-drawn carriage amid curves of honey-colored mansions like Georgian aristocrats, or resting in a colonnaded public bath with sleepy Romans.

Not only are the old thermal springs bubbling beneath the surface of this exquisite Somerset city. There are Victorian parks to explore, medieval abbeys to see, and romantic punt rides down the River Avon.

After you've looted Upper Town's boutiques and cheered on the local rugby club, you'll feel like a true 'Bathonian.' You'll understand why Queen Victoria and Jane Austen visited.

Bournemouth

Sand, water, and one of England's sunniest places.

An aerial view of a beach in Bournemouth England
An aerial view of a beach in Bournemouth England

Bournemouth is known for its maritime attractions, including a seven-mile stretch of Blue Flag beaches lined with distinctively English beach huts, a historic pleasure pier, and an abundance of ice cream kiosks.

Ride the funicular lift up the cliffs for vistas of the Isle of Wight and interactions with local kestrels and green lizards, or stroll around the chine gardens below.

When afternoon tea calls, head to one of Dorset's historic villages and shop boutiques, farmers markets, and antiques. After nightfall, it's time for a drink at one of the trendy wine bars before catching a West End show.

Bristol

Bristol is famous for both Brunel's magnificent Clifton Suspension Bridge and Banksy's graffiti art.

Bristol Harbor with its famous colorful buildings in the backdrop
Bristol Harbor with its famous colorful buildings in the backdrop

Not to mention Aardman Animations, the makers of Wallace and Gromit. It's no surprise that inventive museums brimming with artifacts and historical treasures have set up shop here.

This combination of attractions makes Bristol an excellent destination for a family day out.

Begin your adventurous exploration of this southwest metropolis at flamingo lagoons, monkey islands, or the depths of the Amazon at the city's aquariums and zoo, or meander through the locks and gorges of the River Avon.

Shopaholics can visit the Bristol Shopping Quarter, which includes galleries, malls, and independent stores.

There's little possibility of getting The Wrong Trousers here. Adults and children alike will be spoiled for choice in Bristol, with so many sites to visit.

People Also Ask

What Areas Are South West England?

South West England is one of England's nine recognized regions. Bristol, Cornwall (including the Isles of Scilly), Dorset, Devon, Gloucestershire, Somerset, and Wiltshire make up the county.

What Is South West England Called?

South West England is one of England's regions. It covers the most ground of any region, stretching from Gloucestershire and Wiltshire to Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. This comprises the West Country and a large portion of Wessex.

How Many Cities Are In South West England?

Salisbury, Bath, Wells, Bristol, Gloucester, Exeter, Plymouth, and Truro are the eight cities. It has two national parks, Dartmoor and Exmoor, as well as a tiny portion of the New Forest, and four World Heritage Sites, including Stonehenge and the Jurassic Coast.

Conclusion

South West England is a gorgeous coastal region with some unique attractions, attractive locations to visit, and fun family activities. Immerse yourself with various things to do here. The South West has more to offer than just beach, with events happening all year that are suited for everyone in the family.

About The Authors

Michael Rachal

Michael Rachal - Travelling Expert

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