Part 2, Stonehenge…The village of Salisbury…Another historical Cathedral…The world’s first clock! The Magna Carta!

As we made our way up the walkway to the Salisbury Cathedral.

After leaving Stonehenge, our driver Steven suggested we continue our day long tour to the historic village of Salisbury, England where he was excited for the eight of us to see the Salisbury Cathedral.

The oldest licensed inn is Salisbury.  Steven explained this is purported to be the oldest pub in England.
Typical home in the village of Salisbury.

Having seen many churches in our travels, never seeming to have our fill, our own enthusiasm escalated when Steven explained we were in for a big surprise. The drive from Stonehenge to Salisbury was approximately an hour. 

A college in the village.
Exterior of the Cathedral.
This is the world’s oldest clock. See below for the full description.
The description of the world’s oldest clock from the year 1386.
With the lively chatter as us girls sat together in the front of the van, while the boys sat in the back, none of us paid much attention to the length of the drive. We certainly were all enjoying each other’s conversation and companionship. 
More interesting architecture for the 13th century.

For Tom and I, having spent almost six months without interacting with English speaking companions, we were both in our glory. There’s no doubt we both hogged the conversations, making up for the lost time. 

What an exquisite building!

For this, we apologize to our new friends. It’s such fun talking to someone other than each other after spending the past six months in non-English speaking countries. Of course, we thoroughly enjoyed talking to one another but, a new face, a new voice, a varied opinion, and experience, is always refreshing.

Steven, our knowledgeable tour guide.
It was a pleasure to walk through the Cathedral.
This is a decorative pool. Steven explained that a tourist set her handbag atop the water when she thought it was a glass top as opposed to water and the handbag sunk to the bottom.
As we approached the beautiful village of Salisbury we knew that Steven had our best interests in mind, as we oohed and ahh’d over the scenery in the village. After parking on a side street, Steven walked toward the church with us, explaining that once we entered, a donation was “expected.”
Battle flags from centuries ago.
Tribute to Normandy located in the Cathedral.

Luckily, as we entered the church, the two receptionists explained they’d take pounds or credit cards. We were quickly getting down to our last British Pounds Sterling.  

The detail in the design in the Cathedral was some of the most impressive we’ve seen.

In every direction, there was a feast for the eyes in design and color.

Since this was to be our last foray in the UK for who-knows-how-long, we were thrilled we’d succeeded in ridding ourselves of any remaining pounds before leaving the country. 

Tourists gathered to appreciate the stained glass.

With all of our travels, we tried to use up any remaining currency by the time we leave the country since many countries have currency we may never use again. Have numerous forms of currency in one’s wallet, never to be used is annoying and wasteful. Thus far, all has gone well.

A side altar or memorial.

The Salisbury Cathedral was well worth the US $9.78, six pounds we paid upon entry. With the steady flow of tourists entering the church, we anticipated they’d be able to continue their ongoing renovation, not unlike the Sagrada Familia we’d seen in Barcelona, Spain over a year ago.

We’ve visited dozens of churches in our travels finding each one unique and appealing in its own way. It was no different from the Salisbury Cathedral, eliciting a gasp when we entered with raging curiosity to see as much as we could in the time allotted until once again we’d be on the road, anxious to return to the ship on time. 

A memorial.  We were unable to read who was buried here. With our WiFi issues at this time, we’re unable to research online to identify each photo.

Again, this was a private tour for the eight of us with the ship not waiting one moment beyond scheduled departure for such. We kept a watchful eye on the time, eventually returning well within the mandatory boarding time frame.

The Salisbury Cathedral originally was two miles to the north of Old Sarum, where the foundations of the great Norman Cathedral can still be seen. Old Sarum was a garrison town and squabbles with the military-led Bishop Richard Poore to decide to rebuild in the valley below

Building commenced in the year 1220 at about the same time the checkered street plan of Salisbury was also laid out. The Cathedral was built under the supervision of one of the canons, Elias de Dereham, assisted by a famous master mason Nicholas of Ely.

By 1258 the choir, transept, and naves were completed and consecration occurred on September 30th.

The spire, 404 feet high, and the highest in England and the third highest in Europe was added 100 years later between 1334 and 1365. Salisbury Cathedral is acknowledged as the most attractive in English Cathedrals in both settings and appearances.

Outside the Cathedral, our group met for beverages from the café.

Rather than stay in the group of eight, Tom and I wandered off on our own with a set time, we’d meet for the walk to the awaiting van.

During our enthusiastic perusing, we were delighted to see one of the three worldwide originals of the Magna Carta on display. Unfortunately, it was one of the few items in the massive church prohibited from photo taking. 

Although disappointed we couldn’t take a photo, it was enriching to see it in any case. Its lengthy translation was posted on a wall.

Tom graciously posed for a photo.  Thanks, Honey!

Finally, it was time to be on our way and after another great day of touring both Stonehenge and Salisbury, we were content to be back to the ship for yet another enjoyable dinner, sharing a table with a new group of six.  The socialization on cruises is always a stupendous source of pleasure for us, thanks to the many fine people we meet.

Tomorrow, we’ll be back sharing some of the events in which we’ve participated on the ship and details of how we spend each day both out to sea and on tour days.

Have a happy day!

                                           Photo from one year ago today, September 6, 2013:

Two of the goat that lived in the backyard of the property jumped on the fence to entertain us while we lived in Diani Beach, Kenya for three months. For details, please click here.