County: Wiltshire

Mediaeval cathedral city & home of the Magna Carta


Just 20 minutes or so away from Stonehenge, Salisbury is a delightful historic city to visit. Its 13th century cathedral is full of superlatives - it has the tallest spire in England, the largest Close, the largest cloisters; it houses the oldest working clock in the world and arguably the best preserved of the four extant magna cartas from 1215. Find out the intriguing story of how it came to be built where it is. A walk around the town reveals more historical delights, from the 15th century Doom painting to the "400 year old cinema". But this new town of Salisbury is 'only' 800 years old. On the way to or from Stonehenge we will see the site of the original town - Old Sarum - a Norman settlement built on the even older Iron-age hillfort. 

Need to know:

  • Entrance to Salisbury Cathedral is by a suggested donation of £7.50 (adult) although you are free to donate anything you like
  • Typical time spent in Salisbury is between 45 minutes (cathedral visit only) and 2 hours to include lunch
  • Depending on itinerary and parking, I may come around the cathedral with you. I offer a 'highlights of the cathedral' whereas the cathedral volunteers are much more knowledgeable (their tours last about an hour)
  • It's about 1 1/2 hrs from Heathrow / Windsor and about 45 minutes from Southampton (although nearer an hour as I nearly always drive through the New Forest)


Usually combined with Stonehenge but also fits in well with the New Forest or a pretty drive through the Hampshire countryside. I also often use it as a brief stop between Southampton and Bath.