Wandering Wednesday – Avebury and Stonehenge, Wiltshire, UK


What if the Hokey Pokey really IS what it’s all about?

 Avebury and Stonehenge

I am on an English kick, reliving a road trip we took in 2008.  If you are keeping score, I am also on an alpha kick as I trek down the bucket list trail.  Avebury is a UNESCO World Heritage site, not far from Stonehenge.  The main difference between the two is accessibility, and the requirement at Stonehenge to wade through protestors and pseudo Druids, then pay 20 pounds  to walk in a tightly restricted circle around the monument.  In order to get there from Portsmouth, we had to drive right by Stonehenge, so I guess I should post some photos of this icon.  We stopped, BUT, you could pretty much call it a drive by.  The pictures! (note the use of the exclamation point)

This is a picture of the fore-mentioned protestors and Druids.

We think that the Druids changed some anti-protestors into these.  They seemed to want something and were used to humans.

We crossed over the motorway (how English of me) and took a few shots, which saved us 20 quid.

You’d think they would put up a picture barrier of some sort.  It is almost like we were there.  You can see the people in the background bemoaning the fact it cost them 4 beer to get in there.  Yes, beer is pretty expensive in the UK.

Our work is done here, so off to Avebury.  This is different but the same.  There are giant stones scattered about in a seemingly random pattern, the big difference, you can walk among them and truly appreciate the size of the project undertaken by these people.  One also learns to appreciate that sheep poop is pretty much just as sticky on your shoes as most any kind of poop.

This next shot will give you an appreciation on how big these stones are.  Also, note the wild animals.

On a serious note, both are worthy to see, and close enough together to make it a must for both.  I did find Stonehenge interesting, although the crowds and protests and price were turn offs.  Avebury was far more natural, but not as structured.  Wandering through a farmer’s field and dancing around sheep poop was different was more than offset by the proximity of the stones, but it was free and there was a nice restaurant with very cold beer, a major plus for me.

Wandering Wednesday – Salisbury, Wiltshire, UK


If you were going to shoot a mime, would you use a silencer?  –  Steven Wright

Salisbury, Wiltshire, UK

Today’s wander involves a trip we took to the UK in 2008.  One of the places we visited was Salisbury.  The town is well-known for its’ cathedral, but there was a certain beauty to it that made us want more.  It is definitely on our places we would like to go back to list.  The place is so very story book English, yet has everything.  Take this picture as an example. Our hotel room had French doors,which I immediately opened and walked out of.  This is what I saw.

A view right of a Thomas Hardy novel, including the swans.  Not much to say, so I’ll just post pictures and give a quick description.

The Rose and Crown is where we stayed.  This picture is the outdoor section of the hotel restaurant.  Pretty nice place to have breakfast.

This is the entrance to the hotel.  This part of the building dates to the 13th century, and the toilets still work.  They don’t build them like they used to.

We headed out for supper and ended up here.  This is the outdoor terrace at the Red Lion in the Hilton Hotel in Salisbury.  A spectacular venue.  It was here that I introduced our English friends to Mexican beer.  They served Corona, which surprised me enough that I had to have a couple, bending my local beer rules for the occasion.

This is the Salisbury Cathedral.  It has several interesting points.  First, the cathedral was built prior to the town, using the “Build it and they will come” theory.  It worked in this case.  The spire is the tallest in the country at 404 feet.  It has the world’s oldest working clock (1386) and contains one of only four surviving copies of the Magna Carta.  It was also built in only 38 years, meaning the building is one of the few churches in the world of only one consistent architectural style.  Buildings of this size could take generations to complete, which incorporated the architecture of several eras.  It opened in 1258.

A last view of the River Avon looking towards our hotel.  All in all, this was a terrific place to visit, not anything like I expected.  I feel that the one day and night we spent here was not enough and hope to return here at some point in our travels.

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