Salisbury Life and Travel Tips
(Salisbury, Wiltshire, England, UK)
Salisbury is a wonderful city to visit at any time of the year and the city does not really have an 'off-season', being busy throughout the year. Even in the coldest winter, the city remains popular and people flock to Salisbury to enjoy the Christmas festivities, decorations and to do their Christmas shopping in the many shopping centres. The quietest time in Salisbury is from January to mid-March and this is probably the only time when hotels reduce their prices to attract more tourists to this part of Wiltshire.
Tourism and Tourist Information
There are a number of tourist information offices and outlets throughout Salisbury and these provide useful tourist information, such as brochures, maps, attractions information, opening hours, directions and general advice.
The main tourist information office in Salisbury is situated in Salisbury city centre.
Salisbury Information Centre
Address: Fish Row, Salisbury, Wiltshire, SP1 1EJ, England
Tel: +44 (0)1722 342860
The Salisbury Information Centre provides an extensive range of services, including travel, events and more.
Open hours: Monday to Saturday - 10:00 to 17:00
As in any large city, always maintain an awareness of your surroundings and try to blend in and not look like a tourist when visiting Salisbury. Although crime levels in the city are extremely low, look like you know where you are going and be particularly careful with hand baggage. Wear a bag or camera across your body, or even consider using a concealed money belt.
Places of Worship
The diverse city of Salisbury is home to a large number of different cultures and most religions have a presence. Many of the churches belong to the Church of England as places of worship for the Anglican faith, although all faiths are always welcome. Newspapers generally list times of services for the main denominations. Salisbury contains a magnificent cathedral, which is a major part of local religion.
Pharmacies and Chemists
Most pharmacies in Salisbury are open from at least 09:00 until around 18:00 and supermarkets often have in-store chemists. Drugstores will usually open until 18:00, although some may stay open until later, and these usually have a pharmacy counter for dispensing prescriptions. Boots the Chemist is a particularly popular option in the city and resides on Silver Street, while Lloyds Pharmacy can be found on North Street.
English is the most commonly spoken language in the Salisbury and the United Kingdom, although regional dialects can vary greatly. There are many ways to say the same thing in the English language, so, in most cases, don't worry about trying to think of an alternative.
Tipping in Salisbury is quite discretionary, with taxi drivers usually being given a 10% gratuity or thereabouts - although this is not essential. Wiltshire restaurants often include service charges and these are always clearly stated on the menus, otherwise a gratuity of around 10% is usually expected in recognition of prompt and courteous service. Hotel staff in Salisbury, such as luggage handlers, happily accept a tip of one or two pounds. Generally, no other public service workers in the Salisbury area expect tips.
July 2007 has seen a major change in English smoking laws and smoking is no longer permitted in any public space, including buses, trains, taxis, pubs, bars and restaurants. Many venues in Salisbury are now providing outdoor patio areas and gardens especially for smokers, with patio heaters during colder weather.
Smoking in Salisbury, and England as a whole, is not as fashionable as it once was, so it is always worth exercising discretion and sensitivity when selecting a place in which to smoke. The best advice would be not to smoke unless others around you do so.
Invitations to Eat
Much business is done over the dinner table in Salisbury and business lunches frequently take place at centrally located restaurants recommended by your host. In most good Salisbury restaurants there will be a comprehensive wine and beer list and tables usually need to be booked in advance. Business dinners in Salisbury are also often conducted at home and these tend to be less formal affairs, with a pre-arranged time for arrival about half an hour before dinner is served. Although guests are not expected to arrive bearing gifts, a bottle of wine or flowers are very much appreciated and should be presented upon arrival. Social dinners are rarely formal affairs and guests will be encouraged to relax.
The British love pubs for their informality and social atmosphere. Pubs and wine bars in Salisbury are most often places to meet and be seen, though each has its own standing in the local community, with some being frequented by business people, locals, celebrities and others by visitors and tourists. Most pubs and wine bars in the city are friendly places - if there is a good mix of people you can be sure that it is a good pub, otherwise, just close the door and find another nearby.
One of the most common social customs associated with drinking in pubs is that of buying a 'round' of drinks when drinking socially with a group. Members of the group take their turn, in no particular order, and as people's glasses empty it is a good idea to reciprocate and offer to buy the next round.
The belief that the British drink nothing but tea is today very much a myth. Many love drinking coffee, especially from the countless popular coffee shops in Salisbury that have opened in recent years.