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Winchester Cathedral

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: 9 The Close, Winchester SO23 9LS, England
Phone Number:
+44 1962 857200
09:30 - 17:00
Closed now
See all hours
Sun 12:30 - 15:00
Mon - Sat 09:30 - 17:00
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours

Fifteen centuries of English history lie behind the magnificent Cathedral...

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.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 2,574 reviews
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An uplifting experience with a depth of history

Magnificent architecture, many hours worth of fascinating detail to enable a deeper understanding of the history of England, art, culture and the Christian faith.

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed yesterday
Rod L
Winchester, United Kingdom
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2,574 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 2,376: English reviews
Winchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed yesterday NEW

Magnificent architecture, many hours worth of fascinating detail to enable a deeper understanding of the history of England, art, culture and the Christian faith.

Thank Rod L
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

What a beautiful Cathedral. History of it is amazing. Architecture stunning. A must visit . It's also free on Sunday.

Thank Shannon W
Winchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
20 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

Winchester Cathedral is a very interesting place with a rich history. There are regular tours throughout the day which you can join - we have been on the tour several times and the guides are full of information and each has a slightly different slant so you gain something every time you go. We have also been twice to the... More 

Thank duncan329
Winchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

Lived in Winchester for many years and never had a tour of our beautiful Cathedral which is steeped in history. Wonderful animated tour with knowledgeable and engaging narrator, Harry. Completely fascinating and enjoyed by everyone in our small group. Small admission fee covers all visits to Cathedral for one year. Must do if visiting Winchester.

Thank Joanie343
Presteigne, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
24 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW via mobile

Visited cathedral with friends and had one of the tour guides. What an amazing building and the tour was excellent, very informative and interesting, well worth doing. Would thoroughly recommend visiting.

Thank FizzyDD
Level Contributor
18 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

Stunning views in the morning mist, highly moving and educational visit. The cathedral shop was wonderful lovely gifts at great prices and very helpful staff

Thank Paul P
East Grinstead, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

A really impressive cathedral and I have seen quite a lot. I particularly liked the nativity scene which glowed all the way to the entrance at the back and was lit with a blue glowing light above. Masses of history plus an excellent little exhibition of the meaning of the Creed in modern terms bringing some spiritual meaning to what... More 

Thank Jane W
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
58 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 days ago NEW

We came to Winchester for the Christmas Market, having just moved back from Germany and missing the Weihnachtsmarkt atmosphere. We were extremely surprised to see that it was as large as it was, having not expected that many stalls, and it was very atmospheric indeed (despite the pouring rain). The food stalls were extremely busy (and over-priced), but it is... More 

Thank Lucy C
San Marcos, Texas
Level Contributor
34 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 days ago NEW via mobile

A must see for history and literature buffs, as well as those interested in worship and quiet prayer. Staff welcoming and knowledgeable. Check calendar for closings. The Bible was not available for viewing the day we went, but worth the trip, regardless.

Thank Stacie78666
Hythe, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
501 reviews
247 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 179 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago NEW via mobile

Will return to this super huge Cathedral as the entrance ticket lasts for a year. Would have been great to see the Xmas market and ice skating. (Also looking to book for the January Joseph Amazing Technicolor Dream coat production. ) It should have great acoustics in the enormous nave. Hourly guides available but wandered ourselves this time. Friendly and... More 

Thank Susan B

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