Autumn is the perfect time to take a trip to see some incredible sights, and this stone-brick village should be added to your next place to visit in the UK due to looking like a place from a fairytale.
Shaftesbury is located in Dorset, England which has been called one of the most “beautiful villages to visit in Autumn” by TripsGet due to its stunning and atmospheric natural beauty.
Not only is this small market village lit up brilliantly due to the colourful red, brown and golden leaves but it is the location of one of the most famous streets in Britain, Gold Hill. This ancient cobblestone street is known for being the setting of the classic 1970s Horvis bread advert which is regularly voted to be Britain’s favourite commercial of all time.
The view from the top of the hill has been voted one of the “most romantic sights in England” and the medieval cottages and buildings nearby make the village the perfect place for a country getaway.
Despite having a population of fewer than 10,000 people, Shaftesbury has exploded in popularity on social media, with Aytan Abbasli, a British travelling expert, having described the village as being “so pretty you almost can’t believe it’s real.”
Despite being a quaint and quiet village, Shaftesbury has two museums due to the area’s rich history, as the area first began as a settlement founded by Alfred the Great.
The first is Shaftesbury Abbey which was founded in the 800s is a bright museum delicately decorated in dramatic medieval colours to help show what the Abbey would have really looked like at the time, and also has a great display of Angelo Saxon items from archaeological excavations in the area from 2019.
Not only is the Abbey a place of historic importance, but it is also a pilgrimage site of St Edward the Martyr, a teenage King whose tomb is located at the site.
The museum also features a gorgeous and peaceful garden that features fruit trees, a collection of traditional roses as well and over 100 medieval-inspired herbs, and visitors can even buy similar herbs in the museum gift shop.
The second is the Gold Hill Museum, at the very top of the hill of the same name, and is located in two historical buildings which once housed a priest and travellers who would stay in the lodgings while visiting for the market. This local museum is run by volunteers and features eight galleries of beautiful oddities such as the oldest fire engine in Dorset and a mummified cat.
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There are also many places in Shaftesbury to experience some tranquil countryside autumn walks. The nearby Cranborne Chase is one of the largest areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty in the UK, known for its ancient woodlands are rare chalk grasslands.
There is also the Shaftesbury Heritage Trail in order for an easy introduction to the village’s rich history as there are blue plaques which mark 12 important landmarks or buildings scattered around the village for visitors to walk to and read.
Other beautiful natural areas to walk in the surrounding area are Blackmore Vale, a broad valley, Castle Hill, the site of a Saxon hillfort and Duncliffe Wood, one of the biggest and oldest woodland areas in Dorset.
After a long day of taking in the beautiful sights, visitors are encouraged to visit The Mitre, a charming and traditional country pub located in the heart of Shaftesbury which not only serves excellent food and a wide selection of drinks but has spectacular views from the pub’s back windows.
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