Lying in the valley of the River Avon, Salisbury is one the most beautiful cathedral cities in Britain, built in the 13th century. The main attraction is the Cathedral with the tallest spire in England. The surrounding countryside has inspired the paintings of Constable and the writings of Thomas Hardy and Izaak Walton. It is an excellent base for exploring Stonehenge. Salisbury's annual International Arts Festival provides a programme of theatre, live music, dance, public sculpture, and art exhibitions.