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Winchester - my favorite small town in England

In 2005, the cathedral was used as a film set for The Da Vinci Code, with the north transept used as the Vatican; the cathedral was not damaged during either world war

In 2005, the cathedral was used as a film set for The Da Vinci Code, with the north transept used as the Vatican; the cathedral was not damaged during either world war

The gorgeous choir stalls in the cathedral date from 1308; Winchester was the capital of England from the 700s until 1154 with the royal treasury housed in the cathedral

The gorgeous choir stalls in the cathedral date from 1308; Winchester was the capital of England from the 700s until 1154 with the royal treasury housed in the cathedral

Winchester Cathedral is 558 feet long and was consecrated in 1093; the cathedral is home to the 4 volume Winchester Bible which is the biggest, brightest and best surviving 12th century English Bible

Winchester Cathedral is 558 feet long and was consecrated in 1093; the cathedral is home to the 4 volume Winchester Bible which is the biggest, brightest and best surviving 12th century English Bible

Jane Austen is the most famous person buried at Winchester Cathedral; in 1348-9, the Black Death may have killed half the people in Winchester, the plague returned in 1361 and again periodically for centuries

Jane Austen is the most famous person buried at Winchester Cathedral; in 1348-9, the Black Death may have killed half the people in Winchester, the plague returned in 1361 and again periodically for centuries

There are peaceful walks along the River Itchen and I've seen video of the river otters that live here; unfortunately, they are primarily nocturnal so I didn't get to enjoy their frolicking

There are peaceful walks along the River Itchen and I've seen video of the river otters that live here; unfortunately, they are primarily nocturnal so I didn't get to enjoy their frolicking

Crowning the wall of Winchester's Great Hall is what centuries of mythology have dubbed King Arthur's Round Table; it's thought to have been made in the late 13th c. and painted in the reign of Henry VIII

Crowning the wall of Winchester's Great Hall is what centuries of mythology have dubbed King Arthur's Round Table; it's thought to have been made in the late 13th c. and painted in the reign of Henry VIII

Throughout England, I've noticed there are still plenty of bookstores and they seem well-patronized; the stores here get much more foot traffic because people aren't driving as much as Americans

Throughout England, I've noticed there are still plenty of bookstores and they seem well-patronized; the stores here get much more foot traffic because people aren't driving as much as Americans

The crumbling remains of early 12th century Wolvesey Castle; it served as the Bishop of Winchester's residence throughout the medieval era, with Queen Mary I and Philip II of Spain celebrating their wedding here in 1554

The crumbling remains of early 12th century Wolvesey Castle; it served as the Bishop of Winchester's residence throughout the medieval era, with Queen Mary I and Philip II of Spain celebrating their wedding here in 1554

The Winchester City Mill is a restored water mill situated on the River Itchen; it was recorded, milling corn, in the Domesday Book of 1086; however there are earlier references going back to 932 in the cathedral records

The Winchester City Mill is a restored water mill situated on the River Itchen; it was recorded, milling corn, in the Domesday Book of 1086; however there are earlier references going back to 932 in the cathedral records

The Winchester Guildhall, built in 1871, is now city hall; in 2016, Winchester was named as the best place to live in Britain by the Sunday Times Best Places To Live guide

The Winchester Guildhall, built in 1871, is now city hall; in 2016, Winchester was named as the best place to live in Britain by the Sunday Times Best Places To Live guide

I had a great view of the Winchester Cathedral out my hotel window; the cathedral was originally built in 1079 and remains the longest Gothic cathedral in Europe

I had a great view of the Winchester Cathedral out my hotel window; the cathedral was originally built in 1079 and remains the longest Gothic cathedral in Europe

The Butter Cross of Winchester is a Holy Cross, dating back to the mid-14th century; the city is 60 miles SW of London with 45,000 residents

The Butter Cross of Winchester is a Holy Cross, dating back to the mid-14th century; the city is 60 miles SW of London with 45,000 residents

Winchester's cavernous Great Hall is the only part of the 11th century castle that Oliver Cromwell spared from destruction; you can see everything from the entry before you shell out 3 pounds to enter

Winchester's cavernous Great Hall is the only part of the 11th century castle that Oliver Cromwell spared from destruction; you can see everything from the entry before you shell out 3 pounds to enter

Westgate is one of two surviving fortified gateways; rebuilt in 12th century and modified in 13th and late 14th centuries, the latter including a portcullis in the western façade and two inverted-keyhole gunports, the earliest in the country

Westgate is one of two surviving fortified gateways; rebuilt in 12th century and modified in 13th and late 14th centuries, the latter including a portcullis in the western façade and two inverted-keyhole gunports, the earliest in the country

This is now the only visible section of the city's Roman walls that remains; it was completed in the 3rd century and enclosed 144 acres

This is now the only visible section of the city's Roman walls that remains; it was completed in the 3rd century and enclosed 144 acres

St Swithun upon Kingsgate is a Church of England church, built in the Middle Ages; located above the medieval Kingsgate, one of the principal entrances to the city, the church is unusual in forming a part of the fabric of the old city walls

St Swithun upon Kingsgate is a Church of England church, built in the Middle Ages; located above the medieval Kingsgate, one of the principal entrances to the city, the church is unusual in forming a part of the fabric of the old city walls

One of the most easily recognizable landmarks in Winchester is the striking statue of King Alfred the Great, erected in 1899 to mark one thousand years since Alfred's death

One of the most easily recognizable landmarks in Winchester is the striking statue of King Alfred the Great, erected in 1899 to mark one thousand years since Alfred's death

Sound II is a statue by Antony Gormley in the floodlit crypt of Winchester Cathedral; I remember the song Winchester Cathedral which was a #1 US hit by The New Vaudeville Band in 1966

Sound II is a statue by Antony Gormley in the floodlit crypt of Winchester Cathedral; I remember the song Winchester Cathedral which was a #1 US hit by The New Vaudeville Band in 1966

My 90 minute tower tour at Winchester Cathedral involved the narrowest stairways and smallest steps I've encountered in a cathedral; it possesses the only diatonic ring of fourteen church bells in the world

My 90 minute tower tour at Winchester Cathedral involved the narrowest stairways and smallest steps I've encountered in a cathedral; it possesses the only diatonic ring of fourteen church bells in the world

This 16th century half-timbered building has been repurposed as a pizza restaurant; Winchester is just 14 miles north of the large cruise port of Southampton (and departure point of the Titanic)

This 16th century half-timbered building has been repurposed as a pizza restaurant; Winchester is just 14 miles north of the large cruise port of Southampton (and departure point of the Titanic)

The high altar at the cathedral features an ornate 15th-century stone screen;  the city is home to Winchester College, the oldest public school (boarding school) in the UK still using its original buildings

The high altar at the cathedral features an ornate 15th-century stone screen; the city is home to Winchester College, the oldest public school (boarding school) in the UK still using its original buildings

One of the earliest known medieval examples of a piped water supply is at Wolvesey Castle; the drains, still visible, emptied into the moat which surrounded the castle (seems like a design flaw to me when the river was nearby)

One of the earliest known medieval examples of a piped water supply is at Wolvesey Castle; the drains, still visible, emptied into the moat which surrounded the castle (seems like a design flaw to me when the river was nearby)

Posted by VagabondCowboy 08:08

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