Flights to Salisbury
Set near the edge of Salisbury Plain is the small city of Salisbury, in southern England. This pretty city offers a beautiful cathedral and plenty of history, and is close enough to Stonehenge for a day trip.
The Southampton Airport (airport code: SOU) is about 40 kilometres away from Salisbury, and there are train routes and good motorways for the trip. Air France offers the only 1-stop flight to Salisbury, with a connection in Paris. You can also fly with KLM to Paris, but there is another connection in Amsterdam as well. Another option when coming from South Africa is to catch a direct flight to Salisbury, arriving instead in London Heathrow. There are direct flights from Johannesburg with South African Airways, British Airways and Virgin Atlantic, then there are several options for the transfer to Salisbury from there.
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The Tourist Attractions of Salisbury:
The main landmark and top attraction in Salisbury is the cathedral which is formerly known as the Cathedral Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Compared to some cathedrals that can take hundreds of years to build, the main body of Salisbury Cathedral was completed in just 38 years between the years 1220 and 1258. It’s also famous for having the tallest church spire in the UK, standing 123 metres high, as well as a number of other feats, such as the largest cloister in Britain, the oldest working clock in the world (dating from 1386), and it has one of only four remaining copies of the Magna Carta.
You can visit Salisbury Cathedral and entry is by donation, but the Tower Tour is especially popular and is by entrance fee. On this tour you get to see the inside of the tower and its historic wood scaffolding.
Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum
The Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum is definitely a recommended visit if you’re interested in the nearby Stonehenge. It features one of the best collections of Stonehenge findings and local archaeology. The museum is housed within The King’s House, and this in itself is a tourist attraction too. The building is Grade 1 listed and it accommodated King James I of England in the 1600s.
One name that Salisbury is sometimes still known by is Sarum, or more specifically New Sarum. This is because the original settlement here was named Sarum. It was a Neolithic settlement that later became a hilltop fort in the Iron Age. Today Old Sarum is open to the public and is maintained by English Heritage as a tourist attraction.
Though not in Salisbury itself, Stonehenge is only 13 kilometres away from the city, making Salisbury the ideal place to base yourself for a visit to this ancient monument. Though you can no longer enter the stone circle and see the stones up close you can view them from a small distance away and encircle them to see them from every angle. There is of course a visitor centre here where you can find out more about the mysteries behind Stonehenge, and as mentioned before you can also visit the Salisbury Museum.
When Should You Visit?:
With average highs of 22C in July and August this is usually the best time to visit Salisbury for sightseeing. Rainfall is fairly consistent throughout the year but summers are a little drier (from May to September), then in October it’s Salisbury’s wettest month. Winters are mild, with an average high of 7C in December, January and February.