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Winter Solstice 2016 Stonehenge

High Wycombe...
Level Contributor
6 posts
10 reviews
Winter Solstice 2016 Stonehenge

Hi, we are hoping to attend the winter solstice 2016, arriving in Amesbury the night before. We haven't yet booked a hotel but are hoping to stay at the Holiday Inn, Solstice Park.

The problem is we aren't quite sure how we will make it to Stonehenge from Amesbury at 7am on a dark winter morning. English Heritage say there is very limited parking during open access and we've read that walking along the road to Stonehenge is discouraged. I was wondering if anyone with local knowledge could tell me how open access visitors generally get from Amesbury to Stonehenge?

Thanks.

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Bingley, United...
Destination Expert
for Edinburgh
Level Contributor
34,888 posts
1. Re: Winter Solstice 2016 Stonehenge

They drive or are driven.

Wiltshire, United...
Destination Expert
for Wiltshire
Level Contributor
11,321 posts
441 reviews
2. Re: Winter Solstice 2016 Stonehenge

So with the caveat that this is frankly not rational behaviour.......The issue is darkness plus the volume of people clogging up what would otherwise be a normal walk? If you are ready for a good walk, park in Amesbury (or even leave the car at the hotel (c. 2miles each way). Leave Amesbury on Stonehenge Road i.e. Out heading to the north west. When you reach the A303 you can do one of two things. But remember its dark.......and potentially cold/wet.

With great, great care cross the A303 to the north into where there is a right of way into the field of barrows adjacent to Stonehenge cottages, then cross the fence (at a stile please) to your west and you are into the 'Stonehenge landscape area' with free access to walk across to the stones, or

Walk along the south side of the A303 where there is a proper pavement going down to the old road junction at the bottom of the dip, again using extreme care cross the road and you are again in the landscape area just below the stones.

All fine and dandy, but there is likely to be lots of people on the move and the cars will be forced to be 'interacting" with too many people not paying sufficient attention. Who knows, strong drink may have been taken even then.

In summer I'd head up to Woodhenge/Durrington Walls, park and go cross country, but not in the dark?

Being there is simply not a thing I would take on .....but that's related to my risk profile!!

6 posts
1 review
3. Re: Winter Solstice 2016 Stonehenge

Just take a taxi. It's only a few minutes drive and they know the back roads to use.

Cornwall, United...
Level Contributor
4,010 posts
73 reviews
4. Re: Winter Solstice 2016 Stonehenge

You'd need to book a taxi and if it's crowded, you will be charged a fortune. Woodhenge is the best place to park and take torches - but be there very early.

6 posts
1 review
5. Re: Winter Solstice 2016 Stonehenge

Winter solstice isn't that busy fortunately.

Salisbury, United...
Level Contributor
2,907 posts
61 reviews
6. Re: Winter Solstice 2016 Stonehenge

you will be at the holiday inn which is right along side the A303 as is Stonehenge the A303 is a main trunk road as well as the Stonehenge traffic there will also be a lot of passing traffic so take care if walking one thing is you get less people at the winter solstice but it will be a long walk from the holiday inn as said you could go in to Amesbury and take the old London road through west Amesbury but beware when the A303 is busy people ofton use that road as a by pass woodhenge is a good spot to walk from it would cut the walk by half about but there is very little parking at woodhenge and you would have to know the way to go

if it was later in the day a bus to larkhill and walk from there is easy but you are not going to get a bus at that time it may be possible that a bus may be run from Amesbury to Stonehenge to help with the Stonehenge parking as sometimes they do from Salisbury but I don't know what ever way you choose to take if walking you will need to be carefull and if you are going to walk from the holiday inn I would allow 2 hours (unless you are going to walk along the A303 from the holiday inn not safe )

Level Contributor
1 post
5 reviews
7. Re: Winter Solstice 2016 Stonehenge

My husband and I are planning on going too..do you know if there are tickets to buy beforehand? Or can we just show up? There are countless tours advertising the event, but it's not clear wether or not they're necessary.

Cornwall, United...
Level Contributor
4,010 posts
73 reviews
8. Re: Winter Solstice 2016 Stonehenge

No, it's not ticketed.

Salisbury, United...
Level Contributor
2,907 posts
61 reviews
9. Re: Winter Solstice 2016 Stonehenge

at the summer solstice they charged to park dont know if they will do that for the winter as less people come i think they charged £15 to park and closed the byways so it was pay to park or nothing

Marlborough, United...
Level Contributor
5 posts
22 reviews
10. Re: Winter Solstice 2016 Stonehenge

Winter and summer solstice is free. Winter is probably the best as it's relatively quiet. You could park near Larkhill and walk to the stones from there on a designated path way. It's actually a lovely walk early morning. Unfortunately I can't make it this year. Enjoy