Posted by: travelrat | March 28, 2008

Stonehenge Bus Ride

stonehenge-bus.jpg

On Friday, the Wilts and Dorset Bus Company … or ‘W&D’ to its friends … launched the Stonehenge Tour. Or rather, re-launched it. There’s been a Stonehenge Tour from Salisbury for many years. ‘Guide Friday’, the open-top bus company, used to run it, only they didn’t use an open-top bus on this particular tour.

A couple of years ago, ‘Guide Friday’ was taken over by City Sightseeing … and they didn’t use open-top buses, either!

A few weeks ago, I was putting some finishing touches to an article about Stonehenge, and doing some research for a ‘how to get there’ factbox.

‘We withdrew the Stonehenge Tour a good while ago’ said City Sightseeing ‘but it could be that W&D are still running them in our livery. Repainting a bus isn’t cheap!’
No, we aren’t, said the Man from W&D. The Stonehenge Tour is well and truly defunct.

 

Then, yesterday, I called into my favourite coffee bar, and saw a bus schlepping down the street, in smart new red and black paintwork, proclaiming it to be … The Stonehenge Tour.

So, today, I checked it out. You board the bus in Salisbury, at either the railway station or the bus station. Normally, a return ticket to Stonehenge costs £11 for an adult, but for £17.50, you can buy admission to Stonehenge as well … and, if you do this and it’s crowded, you get fast-track entry, too.

You’ll travel first to Amesbury along the A345 road, and a recorded commentary gives details of what you’ll see along the way. And, after travelling to Stonehenge, you’ll catch a subsequent bus … they run every hour until 1st June; every 30 minutes after that … to return to Salisbury along the A360. There’s a stop at Old Sarum if you want to inspect that ancient castle, but here, you don’t have to wait for the next Stonehenge Tour bus when you’ve finished. Your ticket is good for any W&D bus going into the city.

For fares, timetables and other information, go to www.thestonehengetour.info
UPDATE: 23.Apr.09.
I said in the comments that the Stonehenge Tour does not stop at Amesbury, and there is no regular bus service from there to the stones. This has now been remedied. Thanks to the efforts of the Council (and others … myself included … but the Council took all the credit!) the Tour now stops at Amesbury bus station, and has modified its return route to include a stop at Amesbury.
Update to the Update: 30 Apr. 09
My informant spoke with forked tongue! The Stonehenge Tour does indeed stop at Amesbury to pick up, but does NOT return there. Passengers must either walk back, or continue round the ‘loop’ via Salisbury. Since the fare remains the same, they may as well. This source is impeccable; he drives the bus!
New for 2010:
The route has been modified slightly to include a stop at Salisbury Cathedral. Fares range from £11 for just the tour, to £22, which includes entrance to Old Sarum and Stonehenge, and a dontion to the Cathedral.

Responses

  1. Sounds wonderful. I am definitely going on that tour the next time I visit the UK.

  2. I’ve only one slight little issue with them … on the way out, the bus passes through Amesbury, but doesn’t stop to pick up.

    For about 6 months, there’s been no direct bus link between Amesbury and Stonehenge, even though it’s only a couple of miles away.

    When a couple inquired about this, I worked out that it would be cheaper for them to take a taxi to the Stones than to take a bus into Salisbury, to change to one which passed Stonehenge.

  3. Before you visit Stonehenge you may like to read the new account on: http://www.sarsen56.wordpress.com

  4. I’ve just published a walking audio tour of the Stonehenge sacred landscape – it focuses on setting Stonehenge within its context rather than just seeing the stones in isolation. We visit Durrington Walls, Woodhenge, and two major barrow cemeteries. I’ve used some interesting recent archaeological data – and it’s been fascinating to research.

    http://www.podtours.co.uk/Stonehenge-podtour.html

  5. Did you mention any of the finds Dr. Price and his team found at Durrington last Summer?

  6. […] from Gervis Place, it will take you to Salisbury, where you can transfer to the Stonehenge Tour. (https://travelrat.wordpress.com/2008/03/28/stonehenge-bus-ride […]

  7. […] I hope so anyway, because hardly a day goes by when a search engine doesn’t direct readers to this one https://travelrat.wordpress.com/2008/03/28/stonehenge-bus-ride […]

  8. Hi Keith,
    I don’t know if you saw this in the paper or not, I only just saw this myself this morning, and thought it may bring a smile to your face.
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2014711/Elaborate-hoax-sign-outta-space-The-crop-circle-phenomena-continues.html#ixzz1S8MVf1Kb

    • Been meaning to go & see these before they cut the corn; however, circles appeared in the same field in 1997 … don’t make terribly good photos from ground level.

    • I went up there today to see if they were still there, & if I could make a good photograph from ground level. The results were mediocre, to say the least … but I’ll try and enhance one a little, and, if I can get a satisfactory result, post it in @Pic of the Week’ on Saturday.


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