Destinations Magazine

Stonehenge, Old Sarum & Salisbury Cathedral

By Josephharrison1990 @JTAH_1990

Just a pile of rocks? Don't throw such shade towards a pre-historic monument that has stood strong since 2000 BC! Stonehenge wasn't my only port of call during my full-packed Wiltshire pursuit for I made sure I didn't leave any stone unturned! From the peaks of Old Sarum to checking out the almost 800 year old Magna Carta decree, so I made the best of my nonstop day!

Stonehenge, Old Sarum & Salisbury CathedralI made it to Stonehenge! My journey was lengthy but it was worth every moment when I got to the foundations of Stonehenge. This pre-historic site of mystery is a sight that has to be seen! Dating back to 2000 BC, Stonehenge has a lot of answers as to what purpose it was actually built for? Word on the street is that the word 'Henge' means 'Pen' due to its closed formation, picturing the original structure does make sense, I guess see is believing? I'm not a religious soul but I found out from the Stonehenge Tour Bus talk that Stonehenge has been a site of importance for Neopaganism for literally donkeys years! Taking the Stonehenge Tour Bus fared to be my only option for I don't drive and I also didn't fancy the two mile walk along a busy A road from the bus stop, I guess somethings can't be avoided? In-retrospect I'm glad I wasn't a part of any of the coach trips for the hoards of tourists didn't impress me much! Stonehenge is a true British sight so tourists get to the back of the line!

I'm a traveler not a tourist so my time spent at the magnificent Stonehenge cemented that notion completely! I made my way round the majestic stone structure whilst I tried my best to take as many undisturbed photos of the world famous English Heritage site. I won't go into the details but I wasn't best pleased with the coachloads of tourists for I usually have the opportunity to wake at dawns break to catch a still snap but I think I done good on the photography front! Taking a deep breath I carried on with my Stonehenge experience to be truly delighted I had chosen to visit this pre-historic wonder of English history. I make no bones, I'm pleased that I made the effort to seek an adventure to Stonehenge for its a once in a lifetime. I guess being from England doesn't really give us the hunger to seek some of our most precious gems? I'll let the Americans answer for themselves! My time spent in Salisbury and its surroundings definitely made me feel proud to be British for I only heard a smattering of familiar accents! I got you Stonehenge! 

Stonehenge, Old Sarum & Salisbury CathedralOld Sarum was calling! Moving forwards to the next stop on my Salisbury adventure I wanted to seek something in England that I could be proud of. Steeped in over 5,000 years of history I took my time getting to know the original settlement of Salisbury. Old Sarum had its fair share of drama, conflict and eviction orders so I think that this piece of history would fit into our modern world and its shenanigans! Old Sarum I like your style! I don't go by the tourist guide but being a passenger on the Stonehenge Bus Tour I learned to embrace the pattern of the bus services, I made sure I got the most of my time at Old Sarum! Not being much of history buff I wanted to just simply view Old Sarum and its stunning vista from the higher points, even the cloudy sky gave a sense of purpose! Old Sarum was quite international in in its day for the Romans, Normans and Saxons all called the foundations of Old Sarum home during its lively existence. First the stones from the henge to a former Iron Age hill fort, I say Salisbury rocks!  

I never really paid much attention in history class at school but that was a good thing for my time spent at Old Sarum showed me quite a lot of quirky facts that the previous residents had their own gossip corner! How did I get from Birmingham to Salisbury? I took the Megabus to Bristol then the train to Salisbury, then back to Bristol where I caught the 20:00 National Express coach back to Birmingham so I saved money by not staying the night. It's the age old problem that rail travel in England is just too expensive so what else was I going to do? Anyway, I really liked Old Sarum for it distracted me from the pace of my day for I just spent a bit of time admiring the vistas from the look out points, another reason to say that I was proud to find something worth celebrating in England! By the looks of Old Sarum it was madness to think that it was only a two mile drive away from Salisbury, the medieval foundations may have shifted but Salisbury still has a very regal edge! Old Sarum definitely restored some country back in my life! 

Stonehenge, Old Sarum & Salisbury CathedralAnother city, another cathedral! Salisbury Cathedral served up many rich offerings that impressed me much! The Stonehenge Tour Bus has a running commentary that provides a rich wealth of knowledge about the cathedral and the Magna Carta. I decided to see Stonehenge and Old Sarum before visiting the cathedral for the railway station is closer and time is always off the essence. The Magna Carta is presented at the cathedral, its one the first decree's of law that was written in 1215, which makes this statement of democracy 799 years old so in 2015 it will celebrate its 800th birthday! Now that is a cause for celebration! It's only right to take a look at the Magna Carta with a sense of respect for it has been around for some serious world movements. Photos aren't permitted so I just made the most of the view. The Magna Carta was written in very small print in Latin so its unreadable on two counts but out of the four remaining copies its believed that the best lives at Salisbury's Cathedral. 

I'm not a religious soul so my day in Salisbury suited me just nicely, undoubtedly Stonehenge has some pagan reference so I saw fit to embrace that factor. The Cathedral served a decree of law that has been a part of our world and previous societies, the Magna Carta isn't just the title from a Jay-Z album its a almost 800 year old parchment of law. Old Sarum took me back to the days of Roman, Saxon and Norman civilization in England the original foundations of Salisbury. I took my final steps through the main winding streets of Salisbury's quaint city center to find a favourable amount of original architectural wonder still remaining to this day. The journey wasn't easy and did take a long while but I really enjoyed my day in Wiltshire for it was a once-in-a-lifetime day that I won't be bitter not to repeat for the world still turns! I got back to Bristol and passed through Bath Spa on the train so I loved getting back to the South-West of England for its a really nice part of the country! I see a throwback publication in the works for Salisbury was the answer to that!

Stonehenge Keep Those Dollar Bills! 

Joseph Harrison

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