One of the great wonders of the world, the prehistoric monument that is Stonehenge is only a short drive outside of London. We wanted to cover this day trip from London as inspiration for going out of your way to cover one of the most famous sites to see. While it seems obvious, we want to encourage you to get out there and check each of these unbelievable sites off the list; here’s our guide for one of the best, Stonehenge!
Stonehenge is located a little less than two hours outside of London in the town of Salisbury. Built around 2500BC there is really little else that is certain about the site. Think about the age, that was 4500 years ago, incredible! How did nearly fifty-thousand pound rocks get stacked on top of one another in the middle of nowhere-England? We are still trying to figure it out.
While there are plenty of day tours from London that get you there we opted to rent a car for the day and explore it at our own pace. Tickets can be purchased online on the English heritage site (www.stonehengewebsite.com), we bought them the night before, this allows you to bypass any lines upon arrival, particularly in the high season.
We started out after a casual morning in London. Coffee and a casual stroll through Hyde Park preceded our car pickup in Notting Hill. From there we set sail for the stones! Lex had done some research on pubs in a few towns along the way and had settled on a winner – Rose and Thistle; an easy forty-five minute drive outside of London in the charmingly small town of Frimley. Wow did she knock it out of the park, one of the all-time best meals we have ever had in England, one of our most frequented destinations in Europe.
Our meal was simple as Rose and Thistle is known for the traditional English-fare: bangers and mash, fish and chips. That paired with local craft beers made for an excellent getaway from London. Go for the Hogs Back Brewing Co. Traditional English Ale, I am still dreaming about it. Hogs Back Brewing is just a few miles down the road from the pub, so leave early and allow an hour to stop through and hit the brewery tour! Pictures are worth a thousand words at the Rose and Thistle, just amazing. Don't stray from the traditional, 100% recommended.
An hour down the dusty trail you’ll find your destination, the holy grail of rural England, Stonehenge. When you get off the highway Stonehenge immediately comes into view and excitement builds. Checking in to the visitors center you have the option to walk a mile and a half to the site, simply breathtaking; just make sure you leave sufficient time as Stonehenge can easily occupy four hours of casual enjoyment.
Circling the stone structures you get a new perspective on the majesty of human history, what an incredible engineering feet of almost 5,000 years past. The site is surrounded by sheep and farmland as far as the eye can see, also majestic to soak in on the walk back; we enjoyed engaging in some afternoon banter with the sheep as we snapped a few pics with them and got on our way back to the visitors center. They sell local liquors, wines and beer at the visitors center shop, a fun grab on the way out. For all those that plan ahead, here is an awesome tip - go online and book ahead to get a chance at a morning tour that allows you to get right up to the rocks and literally walk through Stonehenge! To get exclusive up-close-and-personal access to Stonehenge book six months in advance, or beat the wait and come on the Summer and Winter solstice, both days allow full access all morning and afternoon to all visitors.
As we headed back to home-base in Mayfair we reflected on the beautiful site we had spent our day admiring and looked forward to an exceptional dinner at one of the sexiest restaurants in London – Sexy Fish. Check back soon for our post as we reveal our favorite restaurants in London!