1921 Rolls Royce Phantom customised for the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
1921 Rolls Royce Phantom customised for the film 'Chitty Chitty Bang Bang'

The largest privately held collection of vintage, antique, and historic motor cars in Britain, the Caister Hall Motor Museum boasts historic bicycles, pedal cars, and carriages in addition to superb early motor vehicles.

Among the highlights of the collection at Caister Hall is the Lotus driven by famed driver Jim Clark, the very first production Fiesta (not quite as fast as the Lotus!), a Bugatti, a Bentley Speed 6, and an 1893 Panhard et Levassor, which can make a real claim to be the very first 'real' motor car.

What makes the Caister Collection so enjoyable is the mix of cars. There are historic race cars like the BRM driven by Sir Jackie Stewart sitting beside vehicles like the pair of custom-built Rolls Royce two-seat racing cars made for the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

There are dozens of historic motorbikes, fire engines, early steam vehicles, and the idiosyncratic Heinkel Bubble Car. There is an amazing mix of sports cars, family cars, race cars, practical and totally impractical cars. And there are a few celebrity cars thrown in for good measure, like the Cadillac owned by Christine Keeler.

I've always loved old cars, though I don't consider myself knowledgeable, and I loved visiting the museum. It's more than a trip down memory lane, its an eye-opening collection of a wonderful variety of historic vehicles, and well worth a visit.

Beside the museum is Caister Castle, a 15th-century fortress built by Sir John Fastolf (Shakespeare's Falstaff), and later owned by the Paston family. A joint ticket is available to view both the castle and motor museum.