today is a centre for religious tourism and pilgrimage.
Strains of mysticism and paganism co-exist, not
always easily, with followers of its Christian heritage.
As with many towns of similar size, the centre is
not as thriving as it once was but Glastonbury supports
a remarkable number of pagan or Alternative shops,
often featuring magical items prominently among
their wares. The outskirts of the town boast a DIY
shop and the slow redevelopment of a former sheepskin
and slipper factory site, once owned by Morlands.
Although the redevelopment has been slow, clearance
of the site has begun with a dramatic change to
of the abbey are open to visitors; the abbey had
a violent end during the Dissolution and the buildings
were progressively destroyed as their stones were
removed for use in local building work. The remains
of the Abbot's Kitchen (a grade I listed building)
and the Lady Chapel are particularly well-preserved.
Not far away is situated the Somerset Rural Life
Museum, which includes the restored Abbey Barn.
Other points of interest include St. John's Church,
the Chalice Well, and the historic George and
Pilgrims Inn, built to accommodate visitors to
The walk up
the Tor to the distinctive tower at the summit
(the partially restored remains of an old church)
is rewarded by vistas of the Mid-Somerset area
including the Levels, drained marshland. From
there, 150m above sea level, it is easy to appreciate
how Glastonbury was once an island and, in the
winter, the surrounding moors are often flooded,
giving that appearance once more.