Winchester has a very long History, and you can feel it just by walking in the town. Indeed, until the Norman Conquest, Winchester was the capital of England. When I decided to go to Winchester for a day trip back in April 2007, it was mainly to see the cathedral. And I discovered much more than that in this very charming English town!
Winchester is mainly famous for its magnificent Cathedral previously mentioned, and for the famous people who are buried there. Do you know Jane Austen, the English writer? She lived and died in Winchester. Hence, the Cathedral and all places around it are busy and packed with tourists. It still felt more peaceful than I expected. I even spent time relaxing at a café, staring at the monument, the people… and enjoying the sun!
The other big attraction in the city is at the castle: we can see King Arthur’s Table there. I missed it during my visit. If you are travelling with kids (or fun grown-ups…!), they may love playing with the reconstitution and the clothes from the City Museum. It is a nice way to learn more about the history of the town, and it is free!
The city centre was full of life. Starting at the statue of King Alfred (so huge! and I did not even know who he was… shame on me!), you can find so many pubs along the main street and even further. I stopped at the pub ‘Bishop on the Bridge’, enjoying the lovely terrace just above the river.
To escape the crowd and chill a bit, you can follow the Itchen river that crosses the town centre. It is ideal for short strolls with many gardens to find a quiet spot. If you climb all the way up to St Gil’s Hill (around 15min from the town centre), you will get lovely views of the city with the castle, the cathedral, and the main street.
Where is Winchester?
Winchester is in the south of England, close to Southampton. It is easy to get to Winchester for a day trip by train, by bus, by car or even by plane, from either Southampton or London.
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