A long-weekend in Somerset and Wiltshire
Only a few hours from London, visit Somerset and Wiltshire. Here rolling green farmland is scattered with stone circles, ancient monuments and holy wells. Quaint old towns in Glastonbury and Wells reveal witchy shops, medieval streets and historic churches.
Magdalene St, Glastonbury BA6 9EL, UK
Wander the lush green grounds at Glastonbury Abbey. Tradition holds that this was Britain’s first Christian abbey, visited by St. Patrick himself, and the final resting place for King Arthur and Queen Guinevere. Guided tours with
Chalice Well Trust, 85-89 Chilkwell St, Glastonbury BA6 8DD, UK
Follow the path of red-tinged iron-rich waters through the peaceful gardens at Chalice Well, one of the most ancient wells in Britain. Sip some of the well’s legendary healing waters at the Lion’s Head or sign up for a guided meditation or a foot-washing ritual.
The Courtyard, 2-4 High St, Glastonbury BA6 9DU, UK
In this charming shop in Glastonbury’s popular courtyard shopping area, browse mystically themed jewelry and art, and the shop’s specialty, crystal pocket angels. They’ll even make a one-off design just for you or someone you care about.
Glastonbury BA6, UK
Hacked down by vandals in 2010, Glastonbury’s Holy Thorn has a 2,000 year religious heritage---it’s believed to have been brought to Glastonbury by Joseph of Arimathea who legend has it traveled to Wearyall Hill after Christ was crucified. Once there, he stuck his staff in the ground, which sprouted into a thorn tree. Even if you’re not interested in this spot’s Christian roots, the hike up the hill is worthwhile for the views of Glastonbury Tor from a distance.
Wells BA5, UK
Snap shots and walk around in this tiny medieval neighborhood. Originally designed to provide accommodations for the Vicar’s Choir who sang at daily worship services at the Wells Cathedral, the homes on this exceptionally quiet street still serve to house all of the choir members, plus organists and other church employees.
86 High Street
Have a look around in one of the quirkiest chocolate shops you’ll ever visit. In this shop, the chocolatier is known as an alchemical artist, and the focus is on raw chocolate as a healing substance. The shop also sells cakes, medicinal mushrooms, unique supplements (one is called love drops) and uncommon super foods like bee pollen.