Weston is 25 miles or so from Bristol, with the drive taking around 40 minutes depending on traffic. Once again, and it feels completely unusual to be saying this given the absolute shambles that is the British rail network, but the train might just be your best option. Bristol to Weston via the rails takes a measly 25 minutes, with trains leaving the big city every 20 minutes or so. There is something beautiful about getting the train to the sea as well.
What is there to do in Weston-super-Mare? Explore the beach of course! Eating fish and chips by the sea is one of those great English experiences, especially if you enjoy fighting off seagulls with rain on the horizon. The Grand Pier is the iconic spot, a family-friendly stunner with points of interest all along its 366m. There are actually three piers in the town, but the Grand Pier takes the biscuit. Entry to the Pier costs just one single pound, so there really is no excuse.
The Winter Gardens Pavilion is another piece of fascinating Somerset history. Built in 1927, this neo-Georgian beaut has seen plenty in its near century of existence, most famously acting as home for the BBC during World War II. The building was redeveloped recently at the behest of Weston College, a real community effort to keep this famous building alive. Don’t miss it.
It is the history that marks Weston out. This was a simple fishing village until the Victorians began their great obsession with seaside holidays, and some of the country’ finest architects and engineers were sent here to create a modern resort. They did a great job, although their pedigree means that is no surprise — Isambard Kingdom Brunel himself lived here for a while. There is a grandeur to Weston that only comes through experience and prestige.
The town itself might be just about as English as it gets but the culinary scene is refreshingly varied, with international options on every corner. Demetris Taverna is one of the best Greek restaurants in the South West, and Il Michelangelo ticks that box when it comes to Italian cuisine. Dining is an international affair in Weston.
But it all comes back to the sea, that wonderful, wonderful sea. A day at Weston-super-Mare is a day embracing that most quintessential of English experiences — wearing a surprisingly large number of layers while enjoying the English seaside. Oh we do love to be beside the seaside…