London to Salisbury by train

How to travel from London to Salisbury where bus connections are available to Stonehenge

The public transport option for a journey from the UK capital to Stonehenge involves taking a train from Waterloo station to Salisbury; and then connecting at the station into a dedicated local bus service.
Full details are available on the Salisbury station guide.



From London Waterloo to Salisbury

Travel Information

Final Destination: Exeter or Salisbury or Yeovil

All trains also call at: Clapham Junction and Andover

1 or 2 x trains per hour

The usual Sunday service is one train per hour


Book early and save: Yes

The cheaper 'Advance' tickets tend to be available from around 10-11 weeks ahead of the travel date, but tickets can be booked up to 12 weeks ahead.
So if you look up a journey more than 10-12 weeks ahead and can't see any 'Advance' tickets, it will mean that they haven't been released for sale yet - it won't be because they have sold out.

The two disadvantages of booking an 'Advance' ticket is that they can only be used on the specific departure you select when making a booking - and then if you don't take that train, because you change your travel plans or don't get to the station on time, they can't be refunded.

The big plus of booking an 'Advance' ticket is the price, they can be more £10 cheaper than booking last minute tickets at the station; because Advance tickets are taken off sale at 23:59 on the previous day.

Seat reservations:

The process for assigning seats on the trains on this route is unconventional, because the train operator, South Western Railway, doesn’t typically offer seat reservations.
However if you book an Advance ticket for a journey on this route, coach and seat number(s) can be included on the ticket.
But what’s exceptional to the norm is that there is no indication on the trains, which inform you and your fellow passengers, which seat(s) have been assigned.
So another traveller may have unwittingly occupied your seat, because the other types of ticket sold for journeys by these trains don’t have reservations available.
They won’t be aware that you, or anybody else, has a ‘reservation’ for the seat they have occupied.

So it’s best to be at Waterloo station ready to board at least 20 minutes ahead of departure, you can then be among the first passengers to join the train, so can claim the seat(s) on your ticket.
Or if you’d prefer not to sit in the seat you have been assigned, because it is facing backwards etc, you can choose to sit elsewhere.
You don’t have to occupy the seat(s) you have been assigned for your ticket(s) to be valid.

Where to book
Ticket Provider Approximate Cost
South Western Railway *

South Western Railway Guide

South Western Railways offers a wider range of tickets than are usually available for British train journeys.
They include:
Evening Out tickets for journeys of less than an hour's duration
Sundays Out tickets for journeys of less than an hour's duration
Super Off Peak tickets enables savings to be made at quieter times on journeys of more than an hour.
For return journeys, you can now travel back within 30 days so they can also save money when Day Return tickets are not an option.

South Western Railway has produced a summary of when these and other specific types of ticket can be used.

On this journey

The journey by train from London to Salisbury is pleasant, but it isn't exceptional.
For more than 30 minutes the train will travel through the suburbs of London and some of the towns which surround the capital.

The landscape becomes more pastoral after Basingstoke and between Andover and Salisbury, the railway crosses the southern edge of the sparse landscape of the Salisbury Plain.

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