Waterloo Railway Station (meet by the main ticket office, which is directly opposite Platform 16) | Map
Guided by Hilary
Short read: In Winchester the whole tapestry of English history unfurls before us...
Long read: Winchester is the city of King Alfred the Great, quondam capital of England, perhaps even the Camelot of Arthur. Winchester is Winchester College, founded in 1382 and the very pattern of the English public school. Winchester is the Great Hall of the Norman castle. Winchester is the mediaeval Westgate. Winchester is – glory of glories* – the Cathedral. Words can't begin to do justice to the astonishing vista of its seemingly endless interior – it's the longest cathedral in Europe. Winchester is the Round Table of King Arthur. Winchester is Jane Austen country and the muted voices of grazing sheep and the merry click of bat upon ball and the lush green fields of England.
*Let's close with that glory of glories. All by itself, Winchester Cathedral makes Winchester a not-to-be-missed destination. It's one of the greatest churches in the world. With its variety of styles, it's a handbook of late medieval architecture. It was an important pilgrimage shrine. It has extraordinary medieval woodcarvings – something that's very rare. It has breathtaking elements of mediaeval fresco, which in England is even rarer. It has a piece of floor of the original tile, which is still rarer. It has a beyond price medieval manuscript, one of the world's greatest holy books – the 12th century Winchester Bible. It has a series of uniquely important tombs – important not just for who's in them but even more so for their design and decoration. Winchester Cathedral is ground zero for English tombs, leaving even Westminster Abbey in its wake.
We go to Winchester on Saturday, August 31. Meet Hilary OBE and Mary (yeah, you get an OBE and two guides for the price of one!) at 9.30 am by the main ticket office of Waterloo Railway Station. The main ticket office is directly opposite Platform 16.
The Tariff (train fare and any entrances) is £42. For the total cost of the trip just add the Tariff to the guide's fee*
*The guide's fee for an Excursion is £18 for adults. Or £16 for Super Adults (over 65s) and students. Or £14 for people with the London Walks Discount Card. Kids under 15 accompanied by their parent(s) go free.
"Best Tourism Experience in England" Gold Medal Winner, Visit England
"London Walks was acknowledged as the premier walking tour company in the entire world" American Tour Guides Convention
If you can't make the regularly scheduled, just-turn-up, public Royal Winchester Excursion do think about booking one as a private tour. If you go private you can have the Royal Winchester Excursion – or any other London Walk – on a day and at a time that suits your convenience. We'll tailor it to your requirements. And – always with private tours and walks – we go to great lengths to make sure the guide-walker(s) "fit" is well-nigh perfect. Ring Fiona or Noel on 020 7624 3978 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll set it up and make it happen for you. Makes a fabulous wedding present or birthday gift or anniversary outing. Merchandise schmerchandise (gift wrapped or not) – but giving someone an experience, now that's special. Memories make us rich.
"Nah, don't need it, got it all here," you say. Er, roaming charges? Er, dead battery? Er, reading your phone in the bathtub and you drop it? [Smelling salts interval: sick as a parrot. ashen-faced.] Er, read the famous white leaflet in the bathtub and you drop it what do you do? Er, you dry it out. Anyway, maybe worth making a mental note that you can always pick up the famous white London Walks leaflet at the Cafe in the Crypt at St. Martin-in-the-Fields, the old church in Trafalgar Square. They're on the Information Table there, right by the box office. And indeed they also display them on the shop counter, right by the cash register. And it's win-win because the Cafe in the Crypt is one of the town's delights. Should be on everybody's London itinerary.