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Family-friendly things to do at Lytes Cary Manor

The garden at Lytes Cary Manor, Somerset
The garden in autumn at Lytes Cary Manor, Somerset | © National Trust Images/James Dobson

Learn about the wildlife that thrives here and the carved characters and creatures you may spot in the house or simply enjoy some quality time in the great outdoors.

Planning your family visit

  • Baby-changing facilities
  • Pushchairs welcome
  • Outdoor natural play area in the woodland
A father and daughter hold hands and walk out over flagstones through an old wooden doorway
Leaving Lytes Cary Manor along the Screens Passage | © National Trust Images/John Millar

Family-friendly things to do in the house

Throughout the manor house, there are steps and access can be quite narrow so we ask that pushchairs are left in the Screens Passage of the Great Hall (where you enter).

Things to look out for in the house:

  • The Great Hall is one of the oldest parts of the house. If you look up you can spot the angels at the bottom of each of the rafters – they each carry a shield decorated with the Lyte coat of arms.
  • ‘The Good Companions’ are a pair of leather figures flanking the fireplace in the Great Parlour. They are also sometimes known as ‘fireside companions’ and their purpose has long been a subject of discussion. One idea is that they were brought to the table if there were only 13 people for dinner, as this was seen as bad luck.
  • What animal you can spot in the Screens Passage of the Great Hall?

Family-friendly things to do on the estate

If you venture off the beaten track, you'll discover a woodland play area and three waymarked trails at Lytes Cary Manor that take you out onto the estate through open fields and woodland. The trails are all between a mile and a mile and a half, so suitable for short and long legs alike.

Things to spot on the estate walks:

  • Kingfishers
  • Dragonflies
  • Butterflies
  • Wildflowers
  • Shrill carder bumblebee: one of the UK's rarest bumblebees
  • Orchids

You might also catch the ranger team working hard carrying out some footpath maintenance or monitoring butterfly species.

For any adventurers working through the National Trust’s ‘50 things to do before you’re 11¾’ list, you’ll be able to tick off quite a few.

Visitor foraging for blackberries at Lytes Cary Manor, Somerset
Foraging for blackberries | © National Trust Images/James Dobson

Picnic at Lytes Cary Manor

Wrap up warm and a relaxing lunch outdoors can still be had in one of the many picnic spots at Lytes Cary.

The turning circle is one of our favourites, as you get the best of both worlds with a view of the Apostle Garden and house, but you also look out to the estate and the circular water tower built in imitation of the ancient dovecote at Avebury. There are a few benches here.

There’s also a large picnic table under the trees at the start of the White walk. The ranger team have routed the shapes of leaves from native trees into it, so you can always test your leaf knowledge while munching sandwiches.

And just in case you’ve forgotten anything, a selection of snacks and warming drinks are available from the tea-room.

The outside of Lytes Cary in summer with hedges to the left

Discover more at Lytes Cary

Find out when Lytes Cary is open, how to get here, the things to see and do and more.

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The outside of Lytes Cary in summer with hedges to the left

Things to see and do in Lytes Cary Manor house 

Find out about exploring the manor and the objects on display inside. See a 16th-century herbal book translated into English, leather mannequins and an embroidered mirror.

Two children run around in the garden at Lytes Cary Manor

Things to see in the garden at Lytes Cary Manor 

Explore the garden and see the unusual shaped topiary trees and hedges or catch the light on the sundial in the orchard.

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Eating and shopping at Lytes Cary Manor 

The tea-room serves light bites, drinks and sweet treats. Browse the selection in the second-hand book barn and find a pre-loved read to take home.

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Visiting Lytes Cary Manor with your dog 

With plenty of space for country walks your dog will enjoy adventures here. Discover the best places to take your dog and facilities available. Lytes Cary Manor is a two pawprint rated place.

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‘50 things to do before you're 11¾’ 

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There's all sorts for families to do around Somerset, from visiting a natural pier to running across the grass. Start planning your day out for the family to enjoy.