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Winchester Cathedral

9 The Close, Winchester SO23 9LS, England
07903 347697
Review Highlights
Very good

We very much enjoyed a guided tour of this cathedral. It is a great building but not the most... read more

Reviewed yesterday
Cheltenham, United Kingdom
Always fabulous

such a very glorious building and a wonderful place to visit at any time of year - good 'gift shop... read more

Reviewed yesterday
Henley-on-Thames, United Kingdom
Read all 3,069 reviews
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Fifteen centuries of English history lie behind the magnificent Cathedral you see today. It stands at the heart of historic Winchester, once the seat of Anglo-Saxon and Norman royal power, on the site of an early Christian church. Begun in 1079, the Cathedral has been a place of worship ever since. Today the Cathedral welcomes hundreds of thousands of visitors each year and in recent years has become well known for its annual Christmas Market and open-air ice rink, which alone attract over 350,000 visitors. A walk round the Cathedral takes you through centuries of English architecture. Particularly striking is the vast gothic nave, the longest medieval nave in Europe. Great works of art, including paintings, sculptures and carvings can be found throughout the building. Don’t miss the Crypt, this atmospheric part of the Cathedral is home to Antony Gormley’s contemplative statue ‘Sound II’ which, after prolonged periods of rainfall can be seen standing in water. The Winchester Bible, the largest and finest of all surviving 12th-century English bibles, is one of the Cathedral’s greatest treasures. Its exquisitely illuminated capital letters, coloured with gold and lapis lazuli, are as intense today as they would have been 800 years ago. The Cathedral is the resting place of many influential and famous people including Saxon kings, bishops and the much-loved English novelist Jane Austen, who was buried in the Cathedral in 1817. An exhibition telling of Jane’s life in Hampshire can be found beside her grave and a memorial plaque funded by her nephew is on the wall adjacent. A guided tour provided by the Cathedral’s own volunteer guides is by far the best way to explore the building. Available on the hour from 10am – 3pm Monday to Saturday, these hour-long tours really do bring the Cathedral, its characters and history to life. It’s worth taking the time to walk through the Cathedral’s historic Inner Close where you will find beautiful buildings and hidden gardens and a gateway to a pretty area of the City known as Kingsgate Village. A perfect way to round-off your visit is a visit to The Refectory, serving homemade cakes, a seasonal lunch menu and a good range of drinks. The pretty terrace and orchard with outdoor seating enjoy good views of the Cathedral. The Cathedral Shop sells a wide range of gifts, cards, books and music, many items have been commissioned especially for the Cathedral so can’t be found anywhere else. A selection of products are available to purchase online via the cathedral website.
  • Excellent69%
  • Very good24%
  • Average5%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“guided tour” (232 reviews)
“jane austin” (105 reviews)
Open Now
All hours
Hours Today: 09:30 - 17:00
Suggested Duration: 2-3 hours
9 The Close, Winchester SO23 9LS, England
07903 347697
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Reviews (3,069)
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1 - 10 of 2,826 reviews

Reviewed yesterday

We very much enjoyed a guided tour of this cathedral. It is a great building but not the most impressive Cathedral we have visited. There is a lot of history and we enjoyed our visit nevertheless.

Thank lynetteslatter
Reviewed yesterday

such a very glorious building and a wonderful place to visit at any time of year - good 'gift shop' if you want a memento.

Thank LEA2011
Reviewed 5 days ago

This was our second visit to the Cathedral. Lionel Kay was our guide. He provided a wonderful lighthearted but substantial presentation of the Cathedral, its history, and some of the key individuals who had left their mark in the place. The building itself is a...More

Thank deadbeatdave
Reviewed 5 days ago via mobile

Winchester is probably one of the most interesting Cathedrals in the country full of history of the faith of our nation. Please do go one of the free guided tours. The lady who ran ours was excellent and gave a wonderful insite into the history...More

Thank Helen R
Reviewed 6 days ago

One of the prettiest cathedrals ever seen, the huge stained glass windows are majestic. Was lucky enough to visit during the choral evensong, stunning voices in a gorgeous setting.

Thank Rob D
Reviewed 1 week ago

If you are visiting Winchester be sure to take a look round the cathedral. It is steeped in history and the architecture and stained glass is fantastic. Also when you buy your entrance ticket it covers you for as many visits as you like for...More

Thank Adrian H
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

We popped in here for a quick look and ended up on an excellent hour long tour Our guide was very well versed and kept the tour moving and we were surprised to find the hour was over so quick The only gripe was the...More

3  Thank Ulsterman61
Reviewed 1 week ago

Winchester Cathedral has an amazing history, the tomb of Jane Austen, but its the buzz when you get into the building it feels full of life, what helped was a Choir Singing, its what the Cathedral was made for.

Thank MrsHCambridge
Reviewed 1 week ago

A lovely old church, with over a 1000years of history. Walking in the Cathedral, looking down on ancient tiles from the 1300's, and the old artwork in the crypts. It is well worth a visit, there is a charge about £6 or so, but you...More

Thank JeffOP
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

I didn't know what to expect when I visited the cathedral but I was pleasantly surprised the guides here are very friendly and informative apart from the connection with Jane Austin I knew nothing but the guides are only too willing to help . The...More

Thank cindy p
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Questions & Answers
14 May 2017|
Response from Ian M |
I am a Cathedral Guide, and there is always a special floral tribute next to the grave other than during Lent and Advent. Occasionally private floral tributes are left next to the grave. Within reason if someone wishes to... More
14 May 2017|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from brucewinton | Property representative |
The Cathedral does not have any parking for general visitors to the cathedral but there are a number of car parks nearby and the city has a very effective park & ride network. Please check the Winchester City Council car... More
Dave L
8 April 2017|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from brucewinton | Property representative |
The tour includes travelling up and down a narrow spiral staircase. A small rucksack will be fine especially if it isn't over-filled. Ideally it is better to avoid taking a bag at all but unfortunately we do not have... More