I love Winchester. Not too far from Southampton, and feels like a world away from where I live despite being over 30 minutes away. It is cute, quaint and has the most charming feel. This post was meant to be scheduled for before Christmas because Winchester has the BEST Christmas Markets – but my laptop died and well … couldn’t post so it had to wait.
I love Southampton, however after living in Cornwall, I do miss charming and quintessential English cities…. And that is Winchester. From Southampton you can obviously drive, get a train or do the Park and Ride and avoid all of the traffic. Keep on reading if you need reasons to visit Winchester.
1 – Cathedral
A bit obvious one …. Winchester Cathedral is a massive selling point in the city, for any type of traveller. Winchester is known for it’s history, and that is no different for the cathedral. It started it’s construction in 1070 and was finished in 1093, and is a staple for religious ceremonies all the way to Winchester University’s graduation. The landmark is also a favourite place for movie scenes including The Da Vinci Code and Elizabeth.
2 – Cosy Pubs
I love pubs and I am so sad that more and closing down each week, so we have to support our local pubs the best we can. The UK are known for our pubs, they are family friendly places to have a good get together and have a casual meal. There are numerous parts of Winchester where you can just relax after wandering around the city or travelling.
3 – Jane Austen
Another MASSIVE factor for a reason to visit Winchester, is for the fans of Jane Austen to visit her resting place and where she spent her final years. An iconic figure in literature, Winchester is a great place to respect her work and be in the place which meant a lot to her. Told you Winchester had so much history! There is also her house Museum, the 17th century museum is where Jane spent the last eight years of her life. One of England’s finest and greatest writers is buried in Winchester Cathedral.
4 – Marwell Zoo
One for the kids and families! Marwell Zoo is close to Winchester, I spent numerous times at Marwell Zoo with family. I always loved animals, so the zoo was an obvious choice. There is plenty to do there and is fun for all the family. It is 140 acres and run by the registered charity and home to over 1,200 animals of 135 species. I love that they are proactive in conservation projects, which is very important to me and something I want to get more involved in. Another reason why the kids will love it? There is a road and rail train and it is free and goes around the gift shop, giraffe, tigers and snow leopard stop.
5 -Close to Local Cities
The best thing about Winchester is that it is so close to nearby cities that offer so much opportunities also. This includes Southampton and Portsmouth, they all have their unique selling points and different things to do. If you want a relaxed day out, go to Winchester. If you fancy hitting the shops for the day … go to Southampton. If you want to have dinner whilst watching the harbour at Gunwharf Quay … visit Portsmouth. There are so many places to visit down south, make sure you see the best that’s on offer and all are easy to visit via Train or Car.
6 – Christmas Market
Yes. I understand that it has only just been Christmas, but I didn’t have time to finish this post and upload it before Christmas. Winchester is known for it’s amazing Christmas Market, I hadn’t been for so long and it was so good to back last year with my nan. It is located within the grounds of the Cathedral and sells local products and even Churros …. WITH Salted Caramel… I could not believe it when I saw it. If you ever visit Winchester in winter, definitely visit the Christmas Market. Even if you aren’t festive, it will get you in the mood!
7 – History
I believe it is always good to know about the history of a town before you go, or at least go somewhere where you can learn something about the city. Obviously we have mentioned the cathedral, but what else is there? Winchester is actually a Roman town, built around 70 AD and is the capital of Wessex. There is Winchester city Mill, with an age of over 1000 years it is possibly one of the oldest working watermills in the UK. Any museum lovers? The Winchester City Museum tells you it’s story from the Anglo Saxons to Jane Austen.
Has anyone ever been to Winchester before? I recommend you do! How is everyone’s year going so far? Mine has been so eventful, new laptop, a lot of hours at work, got my first pair of prescription glasses … oh yeah I am a proper adult now. I also became VERY obsessed with You on Netflix … so captivating watch it!
Have you caught up on my recent posts? I recently wanted to show everyone the bloggers that have inspired me with my travelling and blogging. Go check out my recent post of Top Family Travel Bloggers to follow! Trust me their tips are valuable and I wouldn’t promote something I didn’t love!