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The City of Salisbury

What to expect when visiting Salisbury

Poultry Cross Salisbury

Poultry Cross Salisbury

The City of Salisbury is a medium sized town of around 120,000, a regional centre for a mostly agricultural hinterland. Salisbury is an agreeable city with no high rise blocks, the industrial revolution bypassing this particular city. Salisbury Cathedral, the single most popular visitor attraction dominates the skyline.

Salisbury (for England) is a new settlement, only getting started about 800 years ago and grew around Salisbury Cathedral. The original Old Salisbury (where Celts built a classic Iron Age Hill Fort) and the Romans and Norman's had settlements is at Old Sarum, up on the hill above modern day Salisbury.


Salisbury as a wool town

Salisbury had its hey day in the medieval ages when it was a classic wool town, drawing in wool from its hinterland and using its market to sell on to London amongst others.

Many of the wooden buildings from this golden age still populate the core centre of town around the market, which still operates twice a week.


The structure pictured below is typical of what you will see in the old centre of the city, a traditional wooden beamed building still used for everyday retail purposes.


Shopping and eating in the High Street of Salisbury

The central shopping centre is immediately accessible through the High Street gate from Salisbury Cathedral.


Apart from the concentration of wooden historic buildings the shops are the same mix of chains and independents you'll find in countless other towns of a similar size in the UK. The centre is very compact reflecting its medieval history and parking is expensive, many use the park and ride schemes on the edge of town.

Because of the influx of visitors there are some tea rooms that otherwise wouldn't be there, particularly on the trek from the coach park to Salisbury Cathedral.


Salisbury - the gateway to Stonehenge

Medieval wooden frame shop in Salisbury

Medieval: town centre shops Salisbury

For most people the town is just a pass through on the way to the Cathedral or a place to grab supplies going to nearby attractions like Stonehenge.


Attractions for the visitor

However, for those who want to explore the Tourist Centre is in the heart of the town centre and during the summer months, blue badge guides conduct regular walking tours.

There is a theatre too and a full range of restaurants across all budgets, plus a large Sainsbury's supermarket by the coach park. Salisbury Market takes place Tuesday and Saturdays with about 150 stalls.

In the very centre you will find the market area, poultry cross pictured at top of the page and the tourist centre. Although there is much of interest for the visitor the town is primarily a regional centre for locals for some distance around. You will find the tourist office here well signposted.

Everything is well signed for the pedestrian. This isn't a place to take a vehicle, leave it in the car park just outside the centre or use one of the park and ride schemes on all major roads into the city.


Salisbury Cathedral to Old Mill Salisbury walk

Join us on a short stroll from Salisbury Cathedral to the Old Mill Salisbury, now a hotel and pub (see foot of page). The walk will only take 15 minutes each way tops.


Your destination is a delightful place to take a well earned rest. With a beer garden overlooking the old mill channels and weir. The route goes across the historic water meadows giving another perspective on Salisbury Cathedral.

Your route starts in the Close at Salisbury Cathedral. Make your way through the High Street gate, into the Salisbury city centre, you are now in the heart of the shopping area.


After passing through the arch of the gate, no doubt taking a few photographs you come to crossroad's with traffic lights in around 50 yards.

Salisbury riverside

Salisbury: river walk

You turn left here, the road is called New Street. This is the dreariest part of the whole walk being along a busy road. Stay on the left hand side of the road. In about 200 yards you cross the River Avon and the perspective brightens up. On your left is a car park and some public toilets, (free and well maintained).

Once you pass the car park, there is Queen Elizabeth Gardens on your left. This is a spacious grass area next to the river. On a summers day there will be a lot of people stretched out on the grass, or feeding the ducks and similar innocent activities. Either follow the road around the border of the park or walk through by the river as it meanders.


At the end of the park you will see a footbridge crossing the river.


Cross over the bridge and follow the path. The path is shown on the picture left. Be careful as the odds are you will encounter bicycles, but now the traffic is behind us.


You now go on autopilot through the water meadows, the path finishing at the Old Mill our destination.

There are no turnoffs.

Visiting Stonehenge and/or Bath and/or Windsor

Stonehenge Morning Or Afternoon Half Day Tour- £52

Stonehenge & London Day Tour (Apr-Oct only) - £61

Windsor Castle Windsor Morning & Afternoon Tours - from £55

Windsor, Bath & Stonehenge (inc Lunch, no adm Roman Baths) - £114

Windsor, Bath & Stonehenge (no Lunch, inc adm Roman Baths) - £103

Windsor, Bath, Stonehenge & Salisbury - £101

Windsor & Bath Day Tour - from £79

Windsor, Bath & Stonehenge (Small Group - Max 16 people) - £149

Stonehenge & Bath (Stonehenge admission only) - 3.5 hrs in Bath - £74

Stonehenge & Bath (Stonehenge & Baths adm) - 3.5 hrs in Bath - £89

Stonehenge & Windsor (featuring extended time at Windsor) - £95

Stonehenge & Avebury - £109

Windsor, Stonehenge & Oxford - £106

Stratford, Cotswolds, Bath & Stonehenge - £99

Stonehenge, Glastonbury & Avebury (Small Group) - £149

Lacock, Bath & Stonehenge (Small Group) - £149

Visiting Cotswolds and/or Oxford and/or Stratford and/or Warwick

Oxford, Stratford & Warwick Castle - £99

Oxford, Cotswolds & Stratford (Small Group) -£149

Stratford & Cotswolds (inc Anne Hathaway’s) - £89

Shakespeare’s Stratford–upon–Avon - £57-75 (no admissions incl)

In-depth Cotswolds Only Tour + Lunch - £96

In-depth Cotswolds Only Tour + Lunch (Small Group) - £149

Blenheim Palace, Downton Abbey Village & Cotswolds Tour - £65

Stratford, Cotswolds, Bath & Stonehenge - £99

Windsor, Stonehenge & Oxford - £106

Oxford & Cambridge Tour (May-Sep only) - £101

Downton Abbey & Blenheim Palace (Small Group) - £149

Visiting Canterbury, Leeds Castle & Dover

Leeds Castle, Dover & Canterbury with river cruise - £99

Canterbury, Dover Castle, White Cliffs & Rochester (Small Group Apr - Oct) - £94

Dover Castle, White Cliffs & Canterbury - £99

Special Theme Tours

Stonehenge Special Access (Walk Among Stones) Tours

Downton Abbey + Highclere Castle Tours

Harry Potter Tours

Day Tours by Train to Liverpool, Paris and Scotland

Beatles Liverpool Day Tour - £169

Day Trip to Paris - from £179

Day Trip to Edinburgh - from £199

2 to 12 Day Tours covering Great Britain, Ireland, Paris & Amsterdam

2-Day Avebury, Cotswolds, Bath & Oxford - from £174.25

2-Day Stonehenge, Bath, Cotswolds & Oxford - from £195.21

3-Day Tours of English Regions (3 tours) - from £294.80

3 Days in Paris - from £339

2-Day Edinburgh - from £312

3-Day Edinburgh & Scotland Weekend - from £329

3-Day Edinburgh & Scotland Weekday - from £499

3-Day Amsterdam - from £315

6-12-Day tours of Great Britain and Ireland - from £925

Special Offer Day Tours From London
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