Two hours from London

Immerse yourself in local history, head into the city or explore the surrounding countryside.

While the castle is very much the dominant character in the market town of Thornbury, there is plenty to see and do beyond its gates. History buffs will enjoy discovering the background of the town: Thornbury Castle's helpful staff will point you in the direction of its heritage trail, where you can learn about the human activity in the Neolithic and Bronze Age periods. The Romans were in the area too - in 2004, while digging a pond, a local resident discovered a horde of 11,000 Roman coins.

Once you’ve satisfied your historical interest, why not get out and stretch those legs? A perennial favourite walk is a meander through the town of Thornbury, taking in the High Street and ambling along the banks of the stream. Slightly further afield is the magnificent National Arboretum of Westonbirt. With over 14,000 labelled trees, workshops and guided walks, this can provide a fantastic learning experience for both adults and children. It’s also a superb location for a serious hike (there are 17 miles of trails), or a peaceful, relaxing stroll though a leafy wonderland.

Only 12 miles away is the city of Bristol – a great and bustling place, with a huge array of activities and places of interest. Visit Bristol Zoo or get a buzz at an indoor climbing wall; have a night out in the plethora of bars and pubs; or spend an afternoon immersed in the fascinating history of the harbour. From the drama of Clifton Suspension Bridge to the beautifully preserved SS Great Britain steam ship, there’s something to interest everyone. Start planning your visit with our list of local attractions.

"The castle, room, service, and food were all fabulous. I had only booked for one night while traveling, but because everything was perfect, I changed my plans and stayed an additional night."

Karen Crowell, NH, USA