You don’t have to travel to London to find fun, educational or entertaining things to do. And you don’t have to wait until summer for events to add to your calendar. Here are a few things to do in Wiltshire this spring. We’ll include family-friendly activities so that singles and families alike can find something that fits their schedule, budget and interests.
Salisbury Cathedral is one of the largest and oldest cathedrals in the UK. You may have toured it in the past, but there is a new reason to come back. Over the next few weeks, you can attend light shows in Wiltshire set against the landmark cathedral. The immersive light show starts on the outside of the cathedral before moving inside. This family-friendly light show starts at 7 PM and last around an hour. The event is free for children under three, while tickets for adults are only five pounds apiece. A family ticket costs 16 pounds. And know that this light show is only the start of the celebrations at Salisbury Cathedral celebrating its 800th anniversary.
Stonehenge and Avebury World Heritage Site
Stonehenge and Avebury together are part of a UNESCO world heritage site, though the Avebury stone circle is not as famous as Stonehenge. While you typically cannot walk up to the stones anymore, you can learn more about Stonehenge at the Stonehenge Visitor Center. Or visit the Alexander Keiller Museum in Avebury. Avebury has the added attraction of a traditional English manor and gardens.
Old Sarum is an Iron Age fort. It once housed a cathedral, but it has also been home to Romans, Saxons and Normans. Each group has left their mark on the site and the region’s history and culture. There are graphic interpretations of the history posted at the site. The gift shop offers ice cream, and there are picnic sites in the area.
Longleat is home to one of the oldest safari parks in the United Kingdom. You can drive through the safari park and see the deer, the big cats or the monkeys. There are more exotic animals here, too, such as wallabies and rhino. The park also has a playground with slides and a child-sized castle. Or visit the Elizabethan manor and hedge maze.
The Great Western Railway
The Great Western Railway once linked London and Bristol. The buildings that were used to repair and maintain the trains have been turned into the Museum of the Great Western Railway.
The Wilton Windmill
This is one of the only working windmills in southern England. It has been restored and connects to the historic mill it used to power. And it even works. You can buy stone-ground flour produced at the mill.
The Towbridge Museum is located in the Shires shopping center. This museum is dedicated to the history of England’s cloth production industry. For example, it is home to one of the few remaining spinning jennies known to exist. And when you’re done, you can visit other industrial buildings in the area or pick out some new clothes.