Welcome to the Syrens Walk pilgrimage, a musical tour across ancient Somerset lands.
The Syrens Walk starts In Wells near the Bishop’s Palace and ends at Glastonbury Tor. The journey can also be reversed starting in Glastonbury.
Twenty-five years ago, two artists were commissioned to create a community sculpture project tracking the pilgrimage route between Wells and Glastonbury. The project was named ‘Syrens’ and features nine large limestone way-markers with bronze ‘bells’ inset.
The eight-mile route is completely stile free, and aside from the hike up to Glastonbury Tor, is relatively flat and easy going as it courses across the Somerset Levels. The entire walk follows a section of the National Cycle Route 3 so keep an eye out for the blue signs which will help to guide your way. Please remember that you are sharing the paths with cyclists and other pedestrians. The majority of the route is on country lanes and roads so safety precautions should be taken at all times.
At every mile, you are encouraged to find a small pebble and strike the bells, all of which carry a different musical note, which together, over the miles, form a tune.
Sculptor Barry Cooper and musician and artist Laurence Parnell collaborated on the project with walking and cycling charity, Sustrans. Together they wished to create a musical instrument which could be played whilst walkers made a pilgrimage across this part of Somerset. It is without doubt rewarding and a unique walk – not only do the Somerset Levels shine in all their magnificent glory but you are also rewarded every mile or so with tangible access to incredible art. It’s great fun for both children, and adults alike.
Along the way, each stone features something to do with the county in which they stand – triple spirals, willow and shapes akin to local Somerset landmarks. The route is easy to follow, with a typical Somerset landscape two-mile stretch along the aptly named ‘Long Drove’. A straight road which cuts across the Somerset Levels flanked by watery rhynes and dominated by a sky which rules over the landscape. Watch how the clouds alter the sunlight on Glastonbury Tor – you can certainly see how the artists were inspired. To see details of the whole route visit The Outdoor Guide website.
Or call into the Pilgrim Reception Centre for this and other information about walking and pilgrimage routes in and around Glastonbury where our team are on hand to answer questions and offer advice.
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