Nestled in green valleys and wooded hills, Sherborne is without doubt, one of the most beautiful towns in England and has a reputation for art, antiques and world famous schools.

Spend the morning taking in the delights of the magnificent Abbey and picturesque Almshouse. Take note of the interesting Digby Memorial and visit Sherborne School which has many famous alumni to its name.  

Sherborne Abbey

Follow the Sherborne Town Trail available from Sherborne Tourist Information Centre to help you unravel the town’s fascinating history and get the most out of your morning’s exploration.

Make sure you take time out when strolling around the mellow stoned town to peruse the wide range of independent boutiques and specialist gift shops, providing home inspiration and exclusive fashion.

For lunch, you’ll be spoilt by tempting tearooms, coffee shops, cafés, pubs, bistros and local delis.

After lunch, it’s time to explore Sherborne’s two castles.

Sherborne Old Castle is managed by English Heritage and was built in the early 12th century, before Sir Walter Raleigh acquired the castle in the 1592.

The Old Castle was twice besieged during the Civil War and after the 2nd siege in 1645 when the buildings were badly damaged, Parliament ordered that it be destroyed.

The remains are very impressive and a model of the castle in its original state can be seen at Sherborne Museum.

Sherborne New Castle

Sherborne New Castle was built on the site of a former hunting lodge by Sir Walter Raleigh.

The Digby family became owners of the castle in 1617 and it has remained in the family ever since. You can discover all its fascinating history and see its fine collection of pictures, porcelain and furniture.

The castle’s grounds and lake were designed by the famous ‘Capability Brown’.

Optional Extras

Find some of Dorset's best local delicacies at the Farmer's Market held on every 3rd Friday of every month on Cheap Street, 9.00 am-1.00 pm. You can also find the Pannier Market on the Parade every Thursday and Saturday.

Minterne House and Gardens

If you want to venture further afield the stunning Minterne House and Gardens is only a short car journey away from Sherborne and has been featured in many books and films. The gardens are known for their famous Rhododendrons, Japanese Cherries and Magnolias.

The Cerne Abbas Giant is a 180ft hill figure and described as a giant wielding a club. The chalk drawing has long been regarded as a sign of fertility.

Don't forget to tag us on social media when posting about this itinerary with the hashtag #visitdorset.

Related

Sherborne Abbey
Abbey/Priory
Sherborne Abbey

Historic Abbey Church dating from Saxon times. Wealth of 15thC fan vaulting built of Ham stone.

St. Johns Almshouse
Historic House/Palace
St. Johns Almshouse

Picturesque 15th Century almshouse

Sherborne Tourist Information Centre
Tourist Information
Sherborne Tourist Information Centre

Award winning Sherborne Tourist Information Centre is located on Digby Road in the beautiful Ham stone town of Sherborne.

Sherborne Old Castle
Castle/Fort
Sherborne Old Castle - Aerial view

Visitors today can delight in the great gatehouse, stroll in the castle grounds and enjoy a picnic where Sir Walter Raleigh once entertained when the castle acted as his country home.

Sherborne Museum
Museum
Sherborne Museum

Sherborne Museum is housed in what used to be the gatehouse and almonry of the monastery once associated with the Abbey.

Sherborne Castle
Historic House/Palace
Sherborne Castle, Dorset

Built by Sir Walter Raleigh in 1594 & home of the Digby family since 1617. View Magnificent Staterooms, Nationally Important Collections of Art, Furniture & Porcelain, Raleigh’s Kitchen & a Museum. Explore 42 acres of English Landscape Gardens designed by ‘Capability Brown’ and discover a 50 acre lake, herbaceous borders, magnificent specimen trees and sweeping vistas.

Minterne Gardens
Garden
Minterne Gardens

Minterne is famed for its seasonal profusion of Rhododendrons, Azaleas, Japanese cherries and Magnolias are set in a peaceful wooded valley and have been described by Simon Jenkins as ‘corner of paradise.’ As seen on BBC Gardeners' World.

Cerne Abbas Giant
National Trust Property
Cerne Abbas Giants

The 180ft tall club-wielding man has long been regarded as a sign of fertility. He was probably created as a pagan idol during the Iron Age period of Britain.

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