From peaceful lakes and areas of outstanding natural beauty to the hustle and bustle of the city, there’s a treasure trove of amazing landmarks in England to explore. From the stunning White Cliffs of Dover to castles and abbeys, England’s landmarks list is truly impressive.
Although there’s no shortage of landmarks in London and you could easily spend weeks discovering the best of England’s capital, there are so many more monuments across the country.
- 40 Landmarks in England
- Natural Landmarks in England
- Historic Landmarks in England
- 16- Bamburgh Castle
- 17- Alnwick Castle
- 18- Horniman Museum London
- 19- The Roman Baths, Bath
- 20- York Minster
- 21- Whitby Abbey
- 22- Bakewell
- 23- Angel of the North
- 24- Chatsworth House
- 25- Stonehenge
- 26- St Michaels Mount
- 27- Blenheim Palace
- 28- Hadrians Wall
- 29- The Holy Island of Lindisfarne
- 30- Brighton Pier
- 31- British Museum
- 32- Glastonbury Tor
- 33- Warwick Castle
- 34- Shakespeare’s Birthplace
- 35- Cerne Abba’s Giant
- 36- Eden Project
- 37- Broadway Tower
- 38- Durham Cathedral
- 39- The Iron Bridge
- 40- Canterbury Cathedral
40 Landmarks in England
Natural Landmarks in England
1- White Cliffs of Dover
The White Cliffs of Dover gaze out over the English Channel, but there’s more to the cliffs than the view.
Immortalised through art and song, the White Cliffs of Dover are made from chalk and allow for unusual plants and insects to thrive.
The chalk hill blue butterfly and the pyramidal orchid call the cliffs home.
South Foreland Lighthouse has stood on the cliffs since 1846 and warns mariners against treacherous passage on their approach to Dover.
Hidden beneath the surface are secret tunnels from both World Wars, where the cliffs were a crucial part of the Allied defences.
These tunnels and the lighthouse are open to visitors and exploring them is a great way to delve into the region’s rich history.
2- Coniston Water
Nestled in the idyllic surroundings of the Lake District, and watched over by The Old Man of Coniston (a mountain) lies Coniston Water.
The setting of Arthur Ransom’s ‘Swallows and Amazons’, the lake attracts thousands to its shores every year in search of the locations described in the book.
The lake is also famed for its straight stretch of water, which allows speed enthusiasts to race at the Festival of Speed each year.
Helvellyn is 3118 feet high and is Britains third-highest peak, and one of only four peaks in England to reach over 3000ft (914 m).
Helvellyn is a spectacular mountain in the heart of the Lake District.
With mountains on either side and spectacular views over fells and lakes from the summit, the climb to the top is worth it.
Break just before reaching the peak to gaze over the waters of Red Tarn, a small body of water nestled high in the mountain.
Adventurous walkers tackle the mountain via the rock scrambles along Striding and Swirral Edge.
During winter, these two pathways to the summit are only accessible by highly experienced mountaineers.
When the weather is fine, walkers can be found camping or sleeping in bivouacs on the summit ridge – a perfect spot for stargazing.
Helvellyn has been visited by tourists for over 200 years and was frequented by Lakes poets William and Dorothy Wordsworth, who wrote about their experience on the mountain.
Wainwright, a famous climber and walker who mapped the landscape, wrote this famous quote: “legend and poetry, a lovely name and a lofty altitude combine to encompass Helvellyn in an aura of romance”.
It is easy to see why this wonder of nature still draws people in today.
4- Jurassic Coast
The Jurassic Coast stretches for 153 km (95 miles) across the Dorset and East Devon coastline in the south of England.
It became a World Heritage Site in 2001.
Rocks visible along this coastline are from three key geological periods: Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous.
This stretch of English coastline attracts fossil hunters from all over the world, hoping to find the latest fossil for their collections but if fossil hunting isn’t for you, there are nature, geology and musical walk along the coast.
The west Dorset section of the Jurassic Coast stretches from Lyme Regis, which is the setting of literary novels such as Jane Austen’s Persuasion and the French Lieutenant’s Woman, to Chessil Beach.
In recent times, glamping in Dorset has become a popular way to experience the treasures of the region and to see natural landmarks such as the Golden Cap, which is (a National Trust site) that rises 190 m above sea level.
5- Seaham Beach
The Durham Heritage Coast, a protected area of English coastline, is renowned for its pristine miles of shingle and sand beaches, unique wildlife, and friendly locals.
Seaham is no exception.
Seaham has an array of local bakeries, coffee shops and of course, plenty of places to buy ice cream.
Seaham is famous for its sea glass.
Washed up from discarded glass bottles from the old bottling plants in Seaham and neighbouring city Sunderland, Seaham offers a wide range of sea glass, including more rare finds.
Each pebble of sea glass is unique, eroded by the North Sea before landing on the beach where they will become works of art, jewellery, or placed in jars for decoration.
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6- Malham Cove
Malham Cove is a 70m (230ft) high cliff of white limestone that curves around the cove.
The cove follows the Middle Craven Fault and was gradually shaped over millions of years by ice and water.
There is still water flowing in the cove, however today it flows through underground rivers.
The sheer rockface of the cliff attracts rock climbers seeking new challenges and is popular with free climbers.
The cliff is also an important natural area as it protects a pair of nesting peregrine falcons.
During the summer months, the falcons, alongside house martins and jackdaws, can be seen flying through the cove.
Malham Cove is at Malham, Skipton, BD23 4DJ.
7- Cheddar Gorge
One of England’s most impressive natural landmarks is Cheddar Gorge, which is in the heart of Somerset.
Cheddar Gorge is the largest cove in England at 450ft (137m), creating a dramatic and awe-inspiring natural landscape.
The site is famous for its incredible beauty and prehistoric discoveries.
The most famous discovery from Cheddar Gorge is the Cheddar Man, which was discovered in 1903 and is the oldest complete prehistoric skeleton found in England.
Cheddar Gorge is also home to the largest underground river in England, with parts accessible on specialist guided tours.
Cheddar Gorge is at Cheddar, BS27 3QF.
8- Sherwood Forest
Once covering most of the midlands, Sherwood Forest is perhaps the most famous forest in England.
Sherwood Forest is known as the home of Robin Hood, and located throughout the forest are hidden statues of Robin and his Merry Men.
Within the forest are ancient oak trees, which are more than 500 years old.
The oldest tree within the forest is the Major Oak, a colossal 1000-year-old oak tree supported with steel frames thanks to its size.
The forest today covers 375 ha and is home to various plants, animals and insects.
Sherwood Forest is at Edwinstowe, Mansfield, NG21 9RN.
9- Brimham Rocks
400 million years ago, a mountain range the size of the Himalayas stood across England.
Nature created unusual rock forms after powerful erosions wore away the mountains over millions of years.
Brimham Rocks are some of England’s most unique and unusual rock formations.
Thanks to their unusual shapes and peaceful moor location, Brimham Rocks have been visited by Druids for more than 200 years.
Victorian visitors were drawn to the rocks by myths and legends centred in the area.
Since 1970, the rocks have been in the care of the National Trust, who ensure that the area remains protected for visitors to enjoy for years to come.
Brimham Rocks is at Brimham Moor Road, Summerbridge, Harrogate, HG3 4DW.
10- High Force
High Force is England’s biggest waterfall, with a drop of over 70ft (21m) plunging into a large pool below.
The waterfall is split by a large chunk of rock sticking out from the cliff.
High Force starts as a small trickle of water in the North Pennines before plunging over whin sill rock, increasing the size and speed of the River Tees.
The falls are reachable by many pleasant walks through the countryside and up into the forest surrounding the water’s edge.
High Force is at Alston Road, Forest-in-Teesdale, Barnard Castle, DL12 0XH.
11- The Needles
Off the Isle of Wight coast are The Needles, one of England’s most incredible natural landmarks.
The Needles have also been named one of the seven natural wonders of the United Kingdom.
The rocks jut out from the water and resemble teeth, with a sizeable gap between two.
The tallest rock was known as Lot’s Wife and was 120ft (36m) tall.
After a storm in 1764, the tall rock collapsed into the sea and broke into smaller pieces, creating the four rocks seen today.
The rocks are formed from the delicate chalk that builds up much of the south coast of England.
The Needles is at The Needles, Alum Bay, Totland Bay, PO39 0JD.
12- Gaping Gill
Gaping Gill is a famous cave in England’s Yorkshire Dales.
It features one of the largest underground caverns in England.
The main chamber in Gaping Gill is 129m (423ft) long, 31m (101ft) high, and 25m (82ft) high.
The cave was first partially explored in 1842 when John Birbeck descended into Alum Pot after he diverted a beck that flows into the cavern.
He was lowered down by local farmhands and reached a ledge at a depth of 58m (190ft). The ledge was named after him.
Edouard Martel, a Frenchman, descended to the bottom of the cavern in 1895.
Due to the difficulty in reaching the base of the cavern, visitors are only allowed twice a year.
Local pothole club Bradford and Craven set up a winch system on which visitors can be lowered into the cavern to explore.
Clapdale Drive, Yorkshire Dales National Park, Clapham, Lancaster, LA2 8EE.
13- Lud’s Church
Despite its name, Lud’s Church is not a church but a moss-covered cavern in the heart of the Peak District.
The Church is an 18m (59ft) deep chasm in the Roaches gritstone created by a giant landslip that has been completely covered in a thick coat of green moss over the centuries.
Lud’s Church takes its name from its 15th-century history and was used as a place for those who did not follow the traditional religions of the time to worship in secret, free from persecution.
The people were called Lollards and were followers of a man named John Wycliffe, who was an early church reformer.
Lud’s Church is near Gradback, Quarnford, Buxton, Derbyshire, SK17 0SU.
14- Land’s End
Land’s End has inspired people since the times of the Ancient Greeks and was referred to as ‘Belerion’, which translates to Place of the Sun.
Land’s End is at the westernmost point of Cornwall and is part of its incredible coastal landscape.
Land’s End is used as the starting point for many walks and races in the UK, as people aim to travel 838 miles (1349km) from Land’s End to John o’Groats, a small town in Scotland.
As the landscape around Land’s End is extremely rocky, it is very popular with rock climbers.
The area is also an important location for rare species of flora, which are only found here.
Land’s End is at Sennen, Penzance, TR19 7AA.
15- Higger Tor
Higger Tor is a gritstone tor located in Dark Peak, an area of the Peak District National Park.
The Tor overlooks Burbage Valley offering some incredible views down to the reservoir and across an ancient Iron Age hill fort known as Carl Wark.
Higger Tor is one of many Tors in the area that links directly to the walls of Carl Wark or overlooks it.
As a result, some of the Tors may have been used as defensive posts to protect the fort.
Higger Tor is at Sheffield, Hope Valley, S11 7TY.
Historic Landmarks in England
16- Bamburgh Castle
Overlooking the Northumberland coastline is Bamburgh Castle.
Over 1400 years old, this castle has served as a royal fortress, stronghold for the Normans, and as a home.
As the castle has such a long history and has remained continuously inhabited, it has its fair share of ghost stories.
It is alleged to be the inspiration for the legendary Sir Lancelot’s castle, Joyous Garde.
The castle estate spans (3.6 ha) 9 acres and stands guard over pristine sand beaches and the breathtaking North East Coast.
17- Alnwick Castle
Alnwick Castle in Northumberland is famed for being part of Hogwarts in Harry Potter, Brancaster Castle in the 2015 Downton Abbey Christmas episode and was featured in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.
Alnwick Castle is England’s second-largest inhabited castle and has a rich history, from serving as a military outpost to a refuge for evacuees during WW2.
Home to the Percy family for over 700 years, Alnwick has been a part of the landscape since Medieval times.
It draws visitors in by celebrating its illustrious and at times, tumultuous past.
The estate is now home to lush gardens, an artisan courtyard where locals sell their produce, and a magnificent treehouse housing a restaurant.
18- Horniman Museum London
What started as the private collection of Frederick John Horniman, a Victorian philanthropist and tea trader, has transformed into an incredible museum and gardens.
Horniman’s travels took him to the farthest reaches of the globe with the intent of gathering objects that ‘either appealed to his fancy or that seemed to him likely to interest and informed those who had not had the opportunity to visit distant lands’.
The museum is a landmark of English history, housing an eclectic collection of natural history and is home to a rather unusual exhibit.
When Victorian taxidermists received the skin of a walrus, an animal they had never seen before, they overstuffed the creature.
Since then, the walrus has become a visitor favourite, making Horniman one of the more unique museums in London.
Be sure to visit the conservatory for incredible photo opportunities in Victorian architectural surroundings.
19- The Roman Baths, Bath
Anyone spending the day in Bath in the heart of the city must put the remarkably well preserved Roman Baths on their list of places to visit.
Bath has unique thermal springs that the Romans turned into a bathing and socialising complex in 70AD.
The waters reach 46°C and still fill the bathing pools today.
When visiting, step away from the magnificence of the baths to walk on the original Roman pavements, see the ruins of the Temple of Sulis Minerva and drop by the museum which houses many Roman artefacts, including a bronze head of the Goddess Sulis Minerva.
When visiting Bath, you may also enjoy exploring these Cotswolds villages.
20- York Minster
In the Viking city of York sits York Minster, a cathedral with a rich 800-year history.
The Minster features impressive medieval stonework adorning the facade, and intricate story-filled stained glass windows.
Make the journey up the 275 steps to the top of the Central Tower, keeping your eyes peeled for grotesques carved into the stonework.
The York Minster also offers tours to the hidden parts of the cathedral that are closed to the public.
Tour guides will reveal untold stories of the cathedral’s past.
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21- Whitby Abbey
Standing on the cliff overlooking the fishing town of Whitby is Whitby Abbey.
Now a ruin, this abbey draws visitors from all over the world for its links to Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
A key landmark of the breathtaking north coast, Whitby Abbey is worth the 199 steps it takes to climb up the cliff from the town, and the views from the top are incredible.
Behind the abbey stretches the North Yorkshire Moors, in-front is the North Sea, and to the left; Whitby, the beach, and in the distance the small village of Robin Hoods Bay.
Visit on a bright summers day to enjoy picnics in its grounds, or on a cold and misty morning for an experience more akin to the novel it is linked with.
Famous for Bakewell puddings, the market town of Bakewell is situated in the Peak District National Park, by the side of the River Wye.
The houses of the town are made with local mellow stone, and burrowed between them are a labyrinth of narrow lanes and alleys leading to arcades and courtyards.
Bakewell boasts a stunning medieval five-arched stone bridge which makes for excellent photographs.
The Bakewell Pudding, which the town is famed for, was created by mistake in the 19th century by a local cook.
These days, Bakewell puddings are sold at all bakeries in the town, and at the farmers market, which has been named Britain’s best.
23- Angel of the North
The Angel of the North has been a permanent fixture of the North East’s skyline since its installation in 1998.
Created by Anthony Gormley, this 20 m high statue of 200 tonnes of steel welcomes you to Gateshead.
The Angel of the North, which many have now associated with a landmark of England, has a wingspan of 54 m and is capable of withstanding winds of up to 100mph.
Standing proud over the North East from a hilltop, the Angel is available for visitors to enjoy and has parkland surrounding her feet which is perfect for picnics in warm weather.
24- Chatsworth House
Construction began on Chatsworth in 1687.
Currently owned the Cavendish family, their home and parklands are open to visitors.
More impressive than the grand 30-room house is the treasures it guards.
Chatsworth House is home to works of art from over 4000 years including examples of ancient Roman and Egyptian sculpture, and paintings by Rembrandt, Lucien Freud and David Nash.
The gardens of Chatsworth have been carefully designed and cultivated over 500 years.
While many areas of the garden have changed with the times, pieces of significance such as the Canal Pond and first Duke’s Greenhouse are still there today.
Stonehenge and its 4500-year history has become iconic in the English landscape.
Stonehenge is a Neolithic stone circle that has intrigued archeologists for decades.
There are no reasons for its construction and it has no apparent practical purpose.
A remarkable feat of engineering for its era, Stonehenge is seen as a spiritual place rather than a dwelling.
The sarsen stones were positioned to line up with the movements of the sun, giving archeologists reason to believe that the trajectory of the sun was important to the people who placed the stones.
Today, the site, alongside other attractions in the area such as a museum and Neolithic village, is open to visitors to explore and learn more about the landscapes incredible history.
26- St Michaels Mount
St Michael’s Mount is a tidal island in Mount’s Bay, Cornwall.
The castle has been the home of the St Aubyn family since the 17th century.
With ancient doorways, incredible intricate carvings and tales from sieges and conflict, the castle is worth a day to explore.
Each room that’s open to the public in St Michael’s Mount has unique stories to tell, such as the smoking room filled with exotic treasures from Zanzibar.
There’s an intriguing map room that features a 16th-century map outlining where mythical Cornish giants lived, while a mummified cat from Egypt watches curiously over the prints.
27- Blenheim Palace
Built between 1705 and 1722, Blenheim Palace was is surrounded by the Oxfordshire countryside and carefully preened parkland.
The palace and its parklands had a significant influence on the English Romantic movement and were frequented by artists and writers from this period.
With close links to Sit Winston Churchill, the palace today features a permanent collection to the politician featuring his cigar box, a collection of weapons and military regalia.
28- Hadrians Wall
Since 1987 Hadrian’s Wall has been a World Heritage Site.
The wall was the northwest frontier for the Roman Empire and was actively used by the Romans for almost 300 years.
Today much of the 117 km (73 miles) of the wall and its mile castles and turrets still stand.
From its proud military past, Hadrian’s Wall became a quarry until the 18th and 19th centuries when the conservation movement declared the land and its history should be protected to allow archaeologists and historians time to study and preserve this landmark.
29- The Holy Island of Lindisfarne
The Holy Island of Lindisfarne is another of England’s tidal islands.
Situated just off the extreme Northeast corner of England, the island’s population of 160 swells each year with pilgrims, historians and curious travellers.
Twice a day, during high tide, the island is cut off from the mainland and during low tide, Lindisfarne island is only accessible by a paved causeway.
The island got its name of Holy Land following a bloodthirsty attack on the monastery during a Viking raid in 793AD.
A more recent addition is the 16th-century castle on the southern part of the island.
In the north of the island lies a conservation area which aims to protect the local wildlife.
30- Brighton Pier
Brighton Pier stretches out into the English Channel from the heart of Brighton.
Contrasting the modern, bustling vibe of Brighton city, Brighton Pier offers visitors a chance to step back in time to a more sixties seaside experience.
The Victorian pier stretches for 525 m (1722 ft) and is packed with amusements, fairground attractions and restaurants.
The pier is one of the oldest in England and is built on the site of Chair Pier, which was destroyed in a fire in 1896.
The pier does retain some of its Victorian charm, seen in its filigree ironwork, old kiosks and signage and the original cannon from Chair Pier.
31- British Museum
The British Museum is a monument in England and is the world’s oldest national public museum.
It first opened to the public in 1759 and was a free museum to all ‘studious and curious persons’.
The museum remains free today, with the exception of some specialist talks and exhibits.
The museum began life as a location for the personal collection of Sir Hans Sloane, who gifted his natural history specimens to the British People on his death.
Much of his collection was split between the British Museum, Natural History Museum and the British Library.
More than 6.5 million people head to the museum to see its variety of exhibits and special events each year.
British Museum is at Great Russell Street, London, WC1B 3DG.
32- Glastonbury Tor
Glastonbury Tor is a tower atop a hill that overlooks Avalon’s Isle, Glastonbury and Somerset.
The hill is iconic amongst Pagans and Christians as it was a spiritual location for both religions.
There are many legends centred around the Tor.
It is believed that beneath the hill is a hidden cave that leads directly to the fairy kingdom of Annwn where Gwyn ab Nudd, the lord of the Celtic underworld, dwells with his Cauldron of Rebirth.
Other legends tell of the Holy Grail, which was believed to be hidden under the hill by Joseph of Arimathea, the uncle of Jesus.
Both the Cauldron of Rebirth and the Holy Grail are featured in Arthurian legend, as Glastonbury Tor has long been thought to be the location of the Isle of Avalon where King Arthur went after his last battle.
Glastonbury Tor is at Glastonbury, BA6 8BJ.
33- Warwick Castle
Warwick Castle sits on the banks of the River Avon in the county of Warwickshire.
William the Conqueror built Warwick Castle as a wooden fort during 1068 as a traditional motte and bailey structure that was then reconstructed in stone during the 12th century.
Further additions to the castle were added in the 14th century and the 17th century.
Sir Fulke Greville was gifted the castle by King James I in 1604, who transformed the former military castle into a family home.
Since 1978 the castle has been open to the public.
Warwick Castle is at Warwick, CV34 4QU.
34- Shakespeare’s Birthplace
In the heart of Stratford-Upon-Avon is the birthplace of the world-renowned playwright, William Shakespeare.
Shakespeare’s childhood home is a timber-framed house. Shakespeare was brown in the house and even lived there with his wife Anne Hathaway and their three children.
William leased the house to his sister, and later part of the house became a pub named the Swan and Maidenhead Inn.
The house was up for sale in 1846 and was saved by a campaign supported by Charles Dickens to preserve the home of the playwright.
The home was purchased by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust in 1847, which has managed the property since.
Shakespeare’s Birthplace is at Henley Street, Stratford-Upon-Avon, CV37 6QW.
35- Cerne Abba’s Giant
Cerne Abba’s Giant is the largest chalk hill figure in England and dates back to the late Saxon period.
The date was discovered recently, as many had believed the Giant to be much older.
However, it is believed that the Giant was created as part of a desire to convert the Cerne locals to Christianity and away from Anglo Saxon gods such as Heil.
Cerne Abbey is located nearby, and it is therefore believed that the Giant could be a depiction of the Anglo Saxon God as a sign of defiance against the Christian Church.
Cerne Abba’s Giant is at The Giant Inn, 24 Long Street, Cerne Abbas, Dorchester, DT2 7AL.
36- Eden Project
The Eden Project is an impressive structure made from three geodesic domes built alongside a large and deep pit in Cornwall.
The three biomes each represent a specific climate from around the world.
The most famous biome is the Humid Tropics Biome, which recreates the environment found in a tropical rainforest.
The Warm Temperate Biome and the Roofless Biome complete the project.
The Eden project sets out to promote harmony between people and the living world, focusing on protecting species and working towards a more sustainable future.
To this end, they host many events and workshops to educate visitors on sustainability and environmental issues.
Eden Project is at Bodelva, Par, PL24 2SG.
37- Broadway Tower
Broadway Tower sits atop Middle Hill and is within a 200-acre (80 ha) park, also open to the public.
Capability Brown, an 18th-century landscaper, designed the tower for George William, the 6th Earl of Coventry, and architect James Wyatt helped complete it in 1798.
The tower is designed in Saxon style and features a range of turrets and battlements.
Gargoyles adorn the balconies and 16 counties can be seen on a clear day from the top of the tower.
Within the tower’s grounds, a herd of red deer roam freely.
Broadway Tower is at Middle Hill, Broadway, WR12 7LB.
38- Durham Cathedral
Durham Cathedral is a working church, pilgrimage location and site of regional heritage within the North East of England.
Described by author Bill Bryson as ‘the best cathedral on Planet Earth’, Durham Cathedral has long been an important site within England.
The cathedral was built in 1093 and features many treasures like stained glass, clocks, tombs and shrines.
Within the cathedral walls are the remains of two saints, St Cuthbert and the Venerable Bede.
As well as being used as a religious building, the cathedral has also served as a movie set, with the Cloister forming the courtyard area outside of Hogwarts in the Harry Potter films.
Durham Cathedral is at Durham, DH1 3EH.
39- The Iron Bridge
The Iron Bridge is the world’s first bridge constructed from iron. It spans the River Severn.
Abraham Darby III, an ironmonger, smelted the iron for the bridge, which was built in 1779.
He pioneered a technique for smelting iron using coke which became a catalyst for the industrial revolution which spanned the following century.
The bridge still stands today in its original form. However, thanks to it’s success, the local area took the name Ironbridge.
In 2017 English Heritage took on funding to ensure that the ironwork on the bridge remains safe and in good condition to preserve its historical significance for generations to come.
The Iron Bridge is at Hodge Bower, Ironbridge, Telford, TF8 7JP.
40- Canterbury Cathedral
Canterbury Cathedral is an English landmark and one of the most significant cathedrals in England.
The seat of the leader of the Church of England, the Archbishop of Canterbury, is described as ‘England in stone’, as it has been at the centre of many important historical events in the country’s history.
Canterbury Cathedral began its life when St Augustine, the first Archbishop of Canterbury, arrived in England in 597AD as a missionary from Rome.
The local king gave him a local church and then expanded it into a cathedral.
The Magna Carta, a chart of liberties from the 13th century, was signed at the cathedral.
Canterbury Cathedral is at Cathedral House, 11 The Precincts, Canterbury, CT1 2EH.