Summer Solstice is celebrated at Stonehenge this year on Friday the 21st June.
The sun is due to rise at 4.52 am, but you can get into the site from 19.00 on the previous evening
English Heritage have a couple of pages of information here:
- Summer Solstice at Stonehenge 2013 | English Heritage
- Summer Solstice 2013 – Conditions of Entry – summer-solstice-coe13.pdf
I’ve got a small amount of information to add, which might, or might not be useful.
Getting from Salisbury to Stonehenge….and back
The solstice bus
It says that you get dropped 1.5 miles from the Henge. I’m not quite sure where that would be – perhaps it’s at Airman’s Corner, where the new Visitor Centre is being built. I’ll try to find out.
I don’t know how much the bus costs – but there are probably details somewhere on the Wilts and Dorset website
Walk from Salisbury
Walking from Amesbury
A better option is to get the bus to Amesbury and walk from there. There is currently a bus called the activ8 (or just number 8) that runs from Salisbury bus station to Amesbury bus station. The last one leaves at 23.25, getting to Amesbury at 23.45. .
You can then cross the A303 through the Countess Roundabout subway and walk across country. You would probably get to Stonehenge around 1.30am, assuming you don’t get lost too badly or too often. You definitely need a good-ish map for this – it’s off-road, and unless you go early it will be dark. The map below gives some idea of the route.
People do drive and park along tracks in the rough vicinity of Stonehenge. I don’t drive, but I really wouldn’t recommend it.
I don’t think you appreciate the experience as much if you arrive at Stonehenge in a car, and you may end up parking some distance away anyway. Personally, I’d leave the car at Amesbury and walk as per the map above.
Taxi to Stonehenge
You could also get a taxi (about £30 each way from Salisbury – you’d need to book and agree the price in advance). I’m not sure how keen cab drivers would be to get to close to Stonehenge at the solstice, because of the traffic.
Getting from London to Stonehenge
You can get National Express coaches from London to Salisbury, or get the train from Waterloo.
The train takes about 1 hour 40 minutes. Train fares very enormously depending on when you book and when your travel. If I’ve got the code right there should be a click-able advert for South West Trains below
It’s an interesting journey – I started describing some of the stuff you see on the way from Waterloo to Salisbury here:
Other stuff about Stonehenge
Hopefully it will be warm and clear at Stonehenge for the Solstice, but it might be worth stating:
- there’s no shelter at Stonehenge. If it rains you will get wet and muddy
- it typically feels colder in Salisbury than it does in London, and it feels colder at Stonehenge than it does in Salisbury. It’s not going to be winter-solstice-cold but you might want to bring an extra layer or two
- the English Heritage info is worth reading
- be careful of your personal safety – it’s easy to assume Stonehenge will be full of mystics and gentle hippies. It’s not.
If you are going, I hope you have a wonderful, dry and safe time.
- Timetable is here – don’t trust me, please check it! [↩]
- I’ve done the Amesbury to Stonehenge walk for the solstice twice now. Still not quite got it right. [↩]
- South West Trains run the trains from Waterloo to Salisbury. If you book a ticket through the advert I’ll get a commission. Soon I’ll be rich enough to buy Stonehenge. [↩]