With the idea of staycations and weekend getaways becoming more and more popular, it’s the perfect time to explore places that have a variety of things to offer, so whether you are looking for a good brunch by the river, long walks exploring the country’s rich heritage, walking into historical film sets or simply looking to explore the finest fudge in the country, a weekend getaway in Salisbury is the thing to plan. We spent the last weekend in Salisbury with the @visitwiltshire team who showed us how much the city has to offer and the variety of it all. We started the day with a game of Treasure Hunt with Treasure Trail which was basically a self guided walking tour of Salisbury, exploring the historic buildings and hidden treasures of the city. So I decided to put together a Salisbury City guide for you that will help you plan your next weekend away.
How to get there
Salisbury is easily accessible by cars and is approximately 90 minutes drive from Central London. It is also well connected with the train lines and coaches so whether you live in the UK or are visiting the UK for a holiday, you can get there hassle free.
Where to stay
There are various hotels and pretty bnbs that you can book online. We stayed at the Pear Tree Serviced Apartments which was ideal for us. It is located in Salisbury City centre and a 2 minute walk from the train station, it offers private parking which was excellent for us as we drove down from Swindon. Our apartment had a fully equipped kitchen, a space to lounge whilst watching TV, and a bedroom with a luxurious king size bed. The hospitality was so personalised as they made special arrangements for baby Ella (such as a cot and high chair), we had free wifi throughout, a complimentary welcome breakfast, and a free laundry room with washing machine and dryers. Overall we loved it as it had so much more to offer than a hotel room.
Places to see
There is so much to see in Salisbury, I now can totally see why Salisbury was world’s Top 10 Cities to visit in 2015 by Lonely Planet. As a blogger I couldn’t stop taking photos of the timbered buildings and the historic streets and the Early English Gothic architecture that marks the city. Here are some of the must see places when you are visiting Salisbury:
- StoneHenge: Of course the first one has to be one of the classic wonders of the world and the most popular tourist attraction around Salisbury. A trip to Stonehenge is such a good way of spending a day. You can park up at the visitor centre and walk up to the stones or can take a shuttle bus to and from. There is a wonderful cafe located on site which serves scrumptious food and cakes so you are sorted for the day, or you could pack a little picnic and enjoy it on your walk to the stones. The tickets are roughly £18 per person and so worth it when you visit the site and see thousands of years old history unfold before you. You can find out more about the place and plan your trip here.
- Salisbury Cathedral: This was definitely one of the grandest cathedrals I have ever seen. We were thrilled to see the Les Colombes art installation, which was a flight of 2500 white paper doves flying through the cathedral as a symbol of peace [see pic]. We also saw the original copy of the #MagnaCarta, (Latin for “Great Charter”) which is one of the most celebrated documents in English history. Only four copies of Magna Carta dating from 1215 have survived the ravages of time and Salisbury Cathedral is proud to be home to the best preserved original manuscript.
- Mompesson House: I was so excited to visit this site. Mompesson House was used as the set for Mrs Jennings’ London townhouse in the 1995 film Sense and Sensibility. All of the show-rooms apart from the small drawing room and library were used. It is such a magnificent town house and will most definitely want you to own a house like that, the grandeur and style of the house will certainly give you some major home inspiration. You can relax in the perfectly landscaped garden and have some local tea and cakes in the tea room located in the garden.
- Old Sarum: On the Sunday we visited Old Sarum which is located 2 miles to the north of the city. The mighty Iron Age hill fort was where the first cathedral once stood and the Romans, Normans and Saxons have all left their mark. If you are visiting Old Sarum, be prepared to get the most breathtaking views of the city, and to explore 5000 years of history through the graphic interpretation panels on the site. It was so amazing to explore the culture so many years ago and how relatable certain things were for example, the water well was one of the most popular gossip areas of the establishment, now how relatable is that? haha.
Where to eat in Salisbury
Salisbury is full of gorgeous looking pubs and ale houses most of them have a history associated with them which is wonderful to explore. Here are a few restaurants in Salisbury that I cannot recommend enough, not just because of the delicious food they serve but also because of the ambience, art and history that stands behind them.
Located in one of Salisbury’s most beautiful restored buildings, it not only offers the most delicious sandwiches and cakes but is home to a beautiful art gallery. You can pick unique gifts and art here and can also see artists at work in the onsite workshops.
When I looked up this place online it said, ‘probably the oldest hostelry in Salisbury and certainly the most haunted’, so obviously I wanted to visit haha. It is genuinely brimming with heritage and history spanning back nearly 700 years. Contrary to the name you do also find vegetarian meal options on the menu. If you are a non vegetarian then you’ve definitely got to visit this pub to strike off one from the 25 must visit pubs in the UK.
If you are looking for gorgeous decor, warm hospitality and delightful food in the centre of Salisbury, look no further. We had lunch here on our second day in Salisbury and the tapas, wine and Sunday roast were definitely one of the highlights of our day. The staff here is so friendly and the venue is so tastefully done, even the bathrooms are oozing with character. They have beach huts in their alfresco seating area which will surely give you all the holiday vibes.
Where to Shop
If you are bored of the usual high street shops then Salisbury is your haven. There are so many independent little quirky shops and we were so lucky to be invited to one of the most popular and stylish shops in Salisbury, Regent Tailoring. It is a stylish contemporary fashion brand with very English heritage vibes which I absolutely love. So if you are looking for that classy English bespoke look then you now know where to find it.
So if you are planning a weekend getaway then I hope I’ve convinced you to visit Salisbury. You can also check out the ongoing local events here.