A Masterpiece in Stone - Salisbury Cathedral
Set against a backdrop of the beautiful Wiltshire countryside, we begin a relaxing day just a few miles up the road from Stonehenge at Old Sarum – one of the most enthralling and historically important sites in southern England and the original site of Salisbury. We wander the former royal castle and the remains of the original 11th-century cathedral within the colossal Iron Age fortification. We’ll then move on to the “new” cathedral and enjoy a relaxing day marveling at the stunning Gothic edifice, exploring the past and the present of this living church. On this architectural journey, we’ll tour this 13th-century masterpiece to discover Britain’s tallest spire with views that have charmed artists and writers alike and the largest landscaped cloisters, from which you will access the beautiful Chapter House with its medieval frieze.
We’ll also entrench ourselves in the minds and lives of the Middle Ages to unravel the extraordinarily short construction of the cathedral which was so intricately laced with the political history of England. We will encounter the world-famous document that guaranteed our democratic rights: the best preserved of only four original copies of Magna Carta dating back to 1215, and King John’s half-brother, William Longspeé, whose effigy we will visit.
Explore the lives, legends and scandals of the people who built this magnificent skyscraper of glass and stone – both up on the pinnacles and down in the crypts.