Family Friendly Sherborne

There is something for the whole family in Sherborne, no matter the weather. Whether you’re looking to entertain the family or keep the kids busy during the holidays you'll find your perfect day out.  

Explore Sherborne‘s past  

Take the children to visit the town’s museum where they'll discover the town’s fascinating past. The museum is really family-friendly and is free to visit! Located in a prime central position halfway along Church Lane, it is close to the Abbey and also the Conduit at the bottom of Cheap Street, where you will find shops, cafés, pubs and restaurants. The museum is also within walking distance of the Almshouse and the two Castles providing the basis for a great day out.

Discover more about the town’s history at the Sherborne Steam and Waterwheel Centre, home to one of the largest waterwheels in Dorset. The waterwheel has a special place in the history of the town, supplying water to the town until 1959.  

Not just one castle but two!

What child doesn't love a castle and Sherborne doesn’t just have one but boasts two castles!

Experience history come to life in the new castle, built by Sir Walter Raleigh in 1594. Visit and discover the staterooms, a Tudor kitchen and the family museum in the Castle's cellars. Afterwards explore the beautiful gardens that were designed by the famous English landscape gardener ‘Capability’ Brown and watch your children skip around the vast grounds whilst you take in the beautiful surroundings. Accompanied children under 16 can enter for free. The castle also plays host to a wide variety of events throughout the year from large country fairs to classic car rallies - something for the whole family to enjoy.

The original castle known as Sherborne Old Castle is an impressive ruin of a 12th Century castle is located right next to Sherborne Castle and Gardens (the new castle). Children of all ages will have great fun exploring the ruins and imagining times of bygone eras. The Old Castle's beautiful grounds are also a haven for wildlife so you can let your little explorer discover all the different birds, wildlife and fauna around the site. The Old Castle is the perfect spot for a picnic so pack up some delicious local produce and enjoy the views over the surrounding countryside.  

Interactive experiences 

Located just outside of the town are two great museums, with interactive experiences for kids and adults.  

Car enthusiasts will love Haynes Motor Museum, exhibiting nostalgic classics of the 50s and 60s, glorious Bentleys and Rolls Royces to exciting super cars like the Jaguar XJ220. For kids there’s the Vroom Room, an interactive garage and mini road system, a construction zone with Super Diggers, plus so much more to keep the whole family entertained. 

Or visit Fleet Air Arm Museum, here you can step onboard the first British Concorde and visit the award-winning Aircraft Carrier Experience where you’ll 'fly' by helicopter to the replica flight deck of the aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal! 

Get active and outdoors 

Get outdoors on your trip Sherborne. Spend the afternoon exploring the town’s gardens. Enjoy a picnic at Paddock Gardens or try and spot the wood carvings in Pageant Gardens. The town also has many play areas for children to enjoy as well as a skate park to practice their skills.  

Just a little outside of Sherborne is Ninesprings Country Park with 127 acres of natural parkland to explore. There is beautiful woodland, streams, a lake and a play area. There are plenty of woodland trails and the open flat area is ideal for ball games, kites, dog walks and picnics. There is also a bike trail along the old railway network.  

With so much to explore it’s time to start planning your next family trip to Sherborne.

Family Days Outhighlights

Gryphon Sports Centre

This busy leisure centre is the largest of its kind in the area. The centre has a fully air conditioned fitness suite, an aerobics/dance studio and a main sports hall. Outdoor facilities include...

AA Shooting School

Open for everyone! AA Shooting School provides clay pigeon shooting lessons near Sturminster Newton. Set on a working farm in the beautiful North Dorset countryside, the location is ideal for a clay...

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Shops & Markets

This traditional high street is packed with boutiques, art galleries, delis and antique shops.

Food & Drink

Discover Sherborne's fantastic variety of places to eat out to suit all tastes and budgets.

What's On

Sherborne Castle and Gardens hosts a variety of events throughout the year.

Where To Stay

You'll find lots of options for places to stay overnight in Sherborne.