How to Get to Stonehenge From London – Bus, Train or Tour?
Stonehenge is usually one of the top bucket list destinations for those visiting the UK, so planning a trip to these mysterious stones is an absolute must. However, as Stonehenge is located in the south-west countryside, it takes some organisation to arrange to get to Stonehenge from London. Here we’ll weigh up the different options for getting to Stonehenge from London, including tours, public transport and private car hire. Read on to find out all you need to know about visiting Stonehenge so that you can plan your trip of a lifetime.
How to Get to Stonehenge From London?
Taking a guided tour from Central London is the most popular option. Alternatively, you can get to Stonehenge by taking public transport (train to Salisbury and then a tour bus). The last option would be to hire a car. Hiring a car allows you full flexibility, so it is a great option for groups.
Where is Stonehenge?
Stonehenge is located around 90 miles south-west of London, in the countryside between Salisbury and Bath. Thanks to its location, it makes a fantastic day trip from London or can be visited as part of a longer trip exploring the south-west of the country.
Journey times between London and Stonehenge take between two and three hours depending on traffic and the mode of transport taken. Regardless of which option you take, the timeframe easily allows you to get to and from London within a day.
London to Stonehenge Tour
There are a number of tour options from London to Stonehenge and which you decide on depends on your budget, preferences and time frame. Some tours simply travel directly from London to Stonehenge and only include entrance to the stones and Visitor Centre, while others include a number of different cities and sites.
Tours from London to Stonehenge allow you to have everything paid for and organised in advance so you don’t have to worry about logistics and can simply enjoy your experience. In general, tours allow for around two hours each way, with comfortable coach travel and an expert guide offering information en route.
If you really want to make the most of your trip out west, you might want to opt for a Full-Day Tour from London. This tour gives you skip-the-line access to some of England’s top sights, with an English-speaking tour guide there to offer information every step of the way. The tour is a mammoth 10-hour extravaganza, exploring the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Stonehenge, the pristine city of Bath, the picturesque town of Laycock (famous for being a popular movie filming location) and the standing stones of Avebury.
Special Access Tours
The stones at Stonehenge have been roped off to the public since 1977, and during a general tour, you have to stand around 10m away from the stones along with the rest of the admiring public. While this is still a special experience, having lots of other people around somewhat takes away from the magic of the place. If you really want to enjoy Stonehenge in peace, you may want to book a Special Access Tour which allows you to see the stones before or after they are open to the general public.
The Stonehenge Special Access Morning Tour allows you to spend one hour with a guide and a maximum of 26 other people while viewing the stones. Seeing the stones in the early morning light with the peace and quiet of a small group really enables you to soak up the magic and mystery of the site. While this tour does involve a 5.30 am start, it’s more than worth it!
If you’re not a morning person, you might be more interested in the Special Access Evening Tour from London, a tour that allows you the chance to enter the site after the general public have departed. Stonehenge at sunset is truly breath-taking and experiencing this with a small group is a must for photographers!
Getting to Stonehenge Using Public Transport
Many people prefer to use public transport to get around when travelling as it means they are not tied into the timeframes of a tour bus which ferries you from city to site. Travelling by public transport to get from London to Stonehenge is definitely possible, but it can work out to be a more expensive option and is likely to involve some transport connections or stopovers.
If you wish to take public transport from London to Stonehenge, you will need to catch a train from London Waterloo to Salisbury or a coach from Victoria Coach Station to Amesbury. Salisbury is the closest town to the stone circle with regular transport links, lying around 9 miles away. From Salisbury, you will need to take a local taxi or connect to a Stonehenge Bus Tour which will take you to the Stonehenge Visitor Centre.
London to Stonehenge By Train
Trains from London Waterloo to Salisbury start at 6.35 am every day, running, in general, every 30 minutes until 23.42. The train runs direct from London to Salisbury so you won’t have to worry about making any changes or transfers. The fastest train from London to Salisbury takes 1h22, which means you won’t spend too much time travelling and can really make the most of your time at Stonehenge. If you are travelling off-peak and have booked well in advance, you can buy one-way tickets from as little as £9. However, if you just turn up and book last minute, it can be over £40 for an Anytime Day Single from London to Salisbury. If you know you only have a day to spend at Stonehenge, it is best to book your return travel in advance. More information can be found at https://www.nationalrail.co.uk/.
London to Stonehenge By Bus
If you are travelling on a budget, you might want to consider coach travel between London and Stonehenge. There are some direct coach services between London Victoria/London Heathrow and Amesbury which lies around two miles from Stonehenge. These journeys take between 2h40 and 3h each way and can cost as little as £12 return.
However, it is worth noting that due to the timetable of these journeys (not arriving into Amesbury until 14.10 at the earliest) you will either only have a flying visit to Stonehenge; will need to arrange to stay overnight nearby, or will need to combine coach travel with an alternative return transport link.
Once you arrive by coach into Amesbury, you can either walk to Stonehenge (which will take around an hour) or grab a local cab.
Connecting to Stonehenge
If you get a train or coach to Salisbury, you will then need to connect to Stonehenge itself. Your first option would be to simply grab a taxi outside of the station (either one way or with an hour wait time at Stonehenge).
Alternatively, you can connect to the Stonehenge Bus Tour. Taking the Stonehenge Bus Tour from Salisbury to the site does mean that you are somewhat tied into a schedule, but as the buses depart and return from Salisbury and the site every 30 minutes (during summer) and every hour the rest of the year, you can decide how long you want to spend at Stonehenge and travel accordingly.
The Stonehenge Bus Tour offers a commentary about the local landscape, history and culture (in 10 different languages!) so you’ll be learning while you travel. Visitors can also purchase combo tickets that allow them to visit Stonehenge, the Visitor Centre, Old Sarum and Salisbury Cathedral (another fantastic sight!).
London to Stonehenge By Car
If you want complete and utter freedom during your travels, you might want to consider hiring a car for your time in the UK. Cars can be hired directly from the airport or from central London so you can pick and choose as and when you want the car from/to.
The journey time between London Heathrow and Stonehenge is between 1h20 and 2h (traffic dependent), while Gatwick to Stonehenge takes between 2h15 and 3h. You could, therefore, plan on travelling straight to Stonehenge upon arrival (depending on what time you arrive).
Travelling by car to Stonehenge also means that you can spend as long as you want at the site, really soaking up the atmosphere and spending plenty of time exploring the Visitor Centre. It also means you can explore nearby sights such as the Avebury Stones (around 45 minutes from Stonehenge), Salisbury Cathedral, or explore nearby market towns such as Marlborough and Frome.
You can then stop off in a classic country pub for dinner on your way back to London without having to worry about missing the last train home!
How Much Does it Cost to Go From London to Stonehenge?
The below gives you a very brief overview of FROM prices to give you an idea of the different transportation costs between London and Stonehenge.
Tour from London to Stonehenge – From £53
Train from London to Stonehenge + Bus + Entrance Fee – From £45 (booked in advance)
Coach from London to Stonehenge + Entrance Fee – From £30 (not including taxi from Amesbury)
Car Hire from London to Stonehenge + Entrance Fee – £40
So, there you have it, the various options of how to get to Stonehenge from London. Prices will vary greatly depending on what time of year you travel, whether you book in advance, whether you are a regular-paying adult or can claim concession prices or which tour you choose.
Whichever option you choose you will be glad you visited as Stonehenge is a truly magical place!
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