Salisbury Things to Do

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    Mompesson House.
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Most Recent Things to Do in Salisbury

  • laforstraveller's Profile Photo

    Salisbury Cathedral

    by laforstraveller Written Jul 14, 2008

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    What a beautiful site! The Salisbury Cathedral is absolutely beautiful. Unfortunately we did not have that much time to truly explore the cathedral and its close. We were there on a Sunday morning and "attended" the 8 AM Holy Communion. We didn't want to be disrespectful by walking around while they were having communion in the Trinity Chapel behind the High Altar, but were able to view the Nave, the North and South Transcepts, and the Cloisters (largest in Britain). Everything else was closed. This Cathedral boasts Britain's tallest spire, has the oldest working clock, and houses the best preserved of the four remaining Magna Carta. I would have loved to have seen the Magna Carta, but it was not available for viewing during the short window of time we had in Salisbury.

    The Cathedral opens at 7:15 AM and is open until 6:15 PM year round (they stay open a bit later during the summer months). The Magna Carta is kept in the Chapter House which opens most days at 9:30 AM and closes at 5:30 PM. See their website for exact opening dates and times. The entrance is "free" but they suggest a 5 GBP donation (2008) for adults.

    Salisbury Cathedral North Side West Front Entrance Close Up Cloisters Cloisters 2
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  • Old Sarum

    by kiminatl Written Mar 24, 2008

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    Just a few minutes bus ride outside of Salisbury, a visit to Old Sarum is definitely worth the trip. The ancient settlement of Old Sarum was torn down and the bricks/stonework were hauled down the hillside to build the new city of Salisbury. Only a loose outline of the buildings remain, but the contrast of the dark stone against the brilliant green grass is breathtaking. And the views are amazing.

    View of the spire of Salisbury Cathedral
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  • krissyM's Profile Photo

    Salisbury Cathedral

    by krissyM Written Feb 7, 2008

    This Cathedral has the highest church spire in England. If you look at the columns to the left and right of the altar you can see that they are badly warped. This is due to the fact that ground is sinking. There is a metal plate on the floor to the right of the altar. The plate is removed and the water content of the earth below is checked. If the earth gets to dry they call the city which opens up the dam to raise the water table. This in turn keeps the church from "sinking" and the columns from getting further warped from the weight of the spire.

    I heard this story from one of the volunteers at the church. if you have the time talk to some of them. they are full of interesting and funny stories.

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    Stonehendge!

    by krissyM Written Feb 7, 2008

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    Most people travel to Salisbury from London to go to Stonehendge. It is quite a pricey day trip from London. The train ticket will cost about 25 pounds, the bus from the train station to Stonhendge will set you back about 7 pounds and admission will run about 6 pounds but it is worth it. An audio guide is included in the admission price. It explains how they believe the stones were transported, what stood on the site hundreds of years before the stones did and why they believe the site was inportant.

    Don't expect to be able to go up to the monument. There is a rope prohibiting it. You can't get any closer then about 100 ft.

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  • SLLiew's Profile Photo

    Salisbury Cathedral (Cathedral of St. Mary)

    by SLLiew Updated Dec 4, 2007

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    A beautiful Anglican cathedral built in the 11th century with the arches and stained windows with one of the highest spire in England.

    There was an altar to remember the politicians of conscience of all over the world when I visited then. Not sure if it is still there.

    It is amazing the height reached by the builders of this cathedral and the beauty and tranquility achieved in the interior. Definitely worthy of a stop to check out this work of architecture.

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  • MarieGutscher's Profile Photo

    Stonehenge

    by MarieGutscher Updated Nov 1, 2007

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    Stonehenge...what can I say about actually seeing it in person.

    Well first the actual tip and then I'll just ramble a bit if you don't mind.

    TIP:
    1. Pay the money to go and see it up close (as close as you can get without being arrested). It seems lots of people climbed the fence and take pics over top of it as they don't want to spend the money on a ticket...whatever...you're supporting a heritage - pay the money - don't be so cheap.

    2. We went fairly early in the morning and the tour buses had not shown up yet! :-)

    Ok, now for the rambling...

    Well first of all, when it came into view while driving in the car, a scene from Monty Python and the Holy Grail popped into my head and I looked at my husband and said "It's only a model!"
    Because thats how it felt. I have no idea why.

    The whole experience was a little sureal. After seeing photo's of it, television shows about it and being told about it, when finally I got there it was a little...weird.

    It was like...ok...there it is...ok...so...

    It wasn't a let down...it was just...well you're standing there looking at it...the wind is whipping the skin from your bones...and what you really want to do is crawl under the rope fence or whatever it was...and go right up and touch the stones. But of course you can't as the "henge guards" are everywhere so its not as if you're going to make a break for it.
    That and you'd end up in a thousand other tourists photographs as they're all standing around doing the same thing you're doing...having their picture taken with all of their hair blown to one side of their head. It was comb over city!

    I don't regret it by any means. It was a really cool experience, but moreso in retrospect. I left with a very unreal feeling about it. Perhaps its because you don't get to visit something that was built in 3100 BC very often.

    My Stonehenge Comb Over Stonehenge...insert eerie music here. OMG is that the sun!!! Stonehenge again...

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  • sourbugger's Profile Photo

    Britian's most stunning cathedral ?

    by sourbugger Written Oct 18, 2007

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    Salisbury has one attraction that stands head and shoulders above all other.

    Built in less than 100 years, Salisbury cathedral is often seen as one of the finest achievements of medieval England. As there have been few significant additions (except the very fine chapter house), it has a certain architechtural pedigree. Most other cathedrals are mongrels by comparison possessing a mish-mash of different styles.

    The cathedral 'close' helps make Salisbury a very picturesque place to be. The 'close' is a collection of various houses, museums and other building grouped around a large mainucured lawn. This gives it a quintessentially 'bucolic English' feel, although I would nominate cathedrals such as Lincoln and Durham above Salisbury, due to their more dramatic setting.

    The cathedral itself contains a few 'modern art' additions, whilst the chapter house contains a copy of the Magna Carta (one only four in existence).

    Entry cost around five quid, and despite appearance it is a voluntary contribution - so it is between you and your conscience.

    Salisbury Cath (from Freefoto)

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  • piglet44's Profile Photo

    See the Stones

    by piglet44 Updated Jul 25, 2007

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    Stonehenge is one of the 7 wonders of the ancient world ,and although you can't get close up to the Stones as you used to be, it is still an overwhelming site and one of the most fascinating places you can ever see.
    Only try not to be there in the rain as we were, because there is nowhere to shelter!
    The sheep in the fields around the ancient site are very sweet too.
    Get the free audio guide,it's very useful and interesting.
    I don't have my own photos as it was raining there too much but I am sure you have seen other pix of it on VT

    Related to:
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  • piglet44's Profile Photo

    an incredible Cathedral

    by piglet44 Written Jul 25, 2007

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    We walked around the town of Salisbury on our West of England trip , and found the Cathedral to be a fascinating place.
    What is special about Salisbury Cathedral?

    * Britain's finest 13th Century Cathedral.
    * Britain's tallest spire (123m/404ft).
    * The best preserved of only four surviving original Magna Carta (AD1215).
    * A unique 13th century stone frieze of bible stories in the Chapter House.
    * Europe's oldest working clock (AD1386).
    * The largest Cathedral Close in Britain (80 acres).
    * Britain's largest Cathedral Cloisters.
    * The largest and earliest set of Quire stalls in Britain.
    * Boy and girl choristers continue a tradition of worship that goes back nearly 750 years.

    cathedral cathedral cloisters Danny with a friend bicycles and phone box
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  • leics's Profile Photo

    ..and see the clock.

    by leics Written May 15, 2007

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    Because it's the oldest working clock in Europe (and possibly the world) and a very impressive piece of machinery (most of which is original).

    Dating from at least 1386, possibly earlier, and made of iron, the clock was originally housed in a bell tower. When this was demolished in the 18th century the clock was moved and forgotten about. In 1929 it was rediscovered and moved back into the cathedral proper, where it now stands. Restorative work in 1956 got it working again, although the striking mechanism has been silenced.

    Very old clock indeed
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  • leics's Profile Photo

    Visit the Cathedral...........

    by leics Written May 15, 2007

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    ....obviously.

    With the tallest spire in Britain (at 123m) and a wealth of interesting bits and pieces within its airy spaces it's an obvious 'must-see'.

    The original cathedral was built in Old Sarum, and Iron Age earthwaork just outside the present city. This building was destroyed by a storm, and its stones were re-used to create the existing cathedral. It took only 38 years to build (1220 - 1258); a stunning achievement when one considers its complexity (the spire was added a hundred years later).

    See my 'off the beaten path' tips for some info on things you might well miss within the Cathedral itself.

    Salisbury Cathedral Inside...............
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  • iwys's Profile Photo

    Malmesbury House

    by iwys Updated Apr 24, 2007

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    Malmesbury House in the cathedral close is a place of historical interest. It was originally built in the thirteenth century and was the home of the first Earl of Malmesbury. The west facade was added by Sir Christopher Wren in 1688. Famous visitors here include Handel and King Charles II, who came here to escape from the plague. It is currently closed to visitors, so you can only view it from the outside.

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  • iwys's Profile Photo

    Bishop Wordsworth's School

    by iwys Updated Apr 24, 2007

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    This is where William Golding, one of the greatest literary figures of the twentieth century, spent his working life. He won just about every literary prize going, including the Nobel Prize for Literature and the Booker Prize, but I can't help feeling a little bit sorry for him, tucked away in this little courtyard, in a small town in Wiltshire, teaching schoolboys all of his life, some of whom he probably caricatured in his novel "Lord of the Flies". Goodbye Mr.Chips?

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  • iwys's Profile Photo

    The Oldest Clock in the World

    by iwys Updated Apr 24, 2007

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    Well, I have looked at it a few times, but I still haven't figured out how you tell the time from it. But, it is certainly a fascinating mechanical contraption that looks about 500 years ahead of its time and I guess if you were a mechanical engineer, this would be your holy grail. To me it looks like a giant clockwork toy, complete with the turning key at the side for winding it up

    The clock was built in 1386 and originally placed in the cathedral's bell tower. It has no face, so you cannot see the time, but it struck the bell on the hour.

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  • Sjalen's Profile Photo

    Old Sarum

    by Sjalen Updated Apr 24, 2007

    Salisbury's proper name really is New Sarum and this is the old part of a very ancient city. SItuated just a few minutes outside Salisbury, this hill was populated in prehistoric times when a ditch was dug and tribes lived here. Then the Romans took over the site before it was settled by the Normans in medieval days when William the Conqueror expanded it. It is from this time onwards that the various palace ruins are from. There was an old and a new palace but today both are in ruins. It is still a nice place to stroll around though, and you get information on what has been where. As you are at the top of the hill, you can also look down and it is quite fascinating to think that there was once a thriving town below the fortress. It also had a cathedral which you see the foundation layer of in a corner below the hill. This all fell into decline when the church and the king started to disagree and the bishop decided to move the cathedral to what is now Salisbury. The web site below will tell you what it might have looked like in its heydays. There are great city views from Old Sarum back towards Salisbury and its cathedral. You can see more on my Old Sarum page. From up here, you also get great views back to Salisbury (see second photo).

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