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Pocket Guide: Wiltshire

Located in the peaceful and naturally beautiful south-west of England, Wiltshire has all the credentials of a premier United Kingdom holiday destination. The picturesque county is home to vast swathes of glorious countryside, peppered with quaint and friendly villages. The small number of towns offer a combination of bustling markets and charming period buildings. To complete the package, Wiltshire is also home to some of the best-known prehistoric attractions in Europe. As you might expect, there are also plenty of first-class hotels here too.

A Rural Treat

Undoubtedly the main attraction of Wiltshire to tourists is its natural beauty. Encompassing part of the Cotswolds and the North Wessex Downs, the diverse countryside is equally ideal for gentle walks and lively adventure sports. There's also a generous helping of challenging golf courses.

A Diverse Collection of Attractions

A popular holiday destination, Wiltshire is packed with attractions, and surely the most famous has to be the iconic, prehistoric site of Stonehenge. The mysterious stone circle is also the site of an informative and fun visitor centre, which details the Neolithic history of the surrounding countryside. Nearby Avebury also boasts an impressive stone circle and a rich history.

Another of Wiltshire's famous attractions is Longleat. The glorious and decadent Elizabethan country home is one of the most iconic in the country, but the real attraction lies out in the grounds. Longleat is the home of the first drive-through safari park to exist outside of Africa. Visitors can come face to face with lions, tigers, cheetahs and - for the less adventurous - giraffes.

The county's only city, Salisbury, also houses its fair share of attractions. The focal point of Salisbury is the cathedral, which features the tallest church spire in the country, at over 400 feet. Inside, visitors can get a look at one of only four original Magna Carta scripts, one of the most important documents in the history of the country.

Hotels around Wiltshire

With so much to see and do around the country, it's hardly surprising that hotels in Wiltshire are among the finest in the country. There's something to suit every taste, from budget B&Bs to luxurious rural retreats.

Tourism in Wiltshire is open to all budgets, as is proved by the Cholderton Youth Hostel. The lively hostel is within easy reach of the iconic Stonehenge and even provides a number of barbecues in the garden to help guests knock up some low-cost meals.

Those keen to visit Stonehenge in style can head instead to Fairlawn House, a welcoming hotel set within a charming and elegant Georgian property.

The vast expanses of countryside in Wiltshire mean there's plenty of opportunity for visitors to book into a tranquil rural retreat. Bowood Hotel makes particularly good use of its extensive grounds, featuring its very own golf course, which is complemented perfectly by the hotel's state of the art spa.

Unsurprisingly, many of the finest hotels in Wiltshire are located in the county's only city. Those looking for a central location can choose the Chapter House, while those seeking great value for money can check out the Best Western Red Lion Hotel, also centrally located.

Wherever you choose to stay, visitors are encouraged to get out and explore as much of this enchanting county as they have time for!

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