Einstein once declared that ‘the most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious’, and this statement is particularly fitting as regards Stonehenge.
It was declared a World Heritage Site in 1986 and retains its intensely spiritual and otherworldly ambience, despite the number of tourists it attracts. If you choose to visit this extraordinary site, ensure you also spend some time delving into the captivating areas that surround Stonehenge. Explore picturesque Windsor and beguiling Bath.
Modern archaeological techniques and a number of recent digs have helped to form new theories about the stones that constitute Stonehenge. However, their definitive use stays as enigmatic as ever; it is suffused with a continuing sense of mystery. Stonehenge stands as an authoritative witness to the once extraordinary civilisations of the Stone and Bronze Ages of around 3,700 BC to 1,600 BC. Similarly, its surrounding areas stand as testament to these mighty cultures.
There is no place on earth quite like Stonehenge. Its brooding, pervasive mysticism, its intense spirituality and its endless aura of mystery all combine to make it an inimitable, idiosyncratic landmark. Take a Stonehenge tour and discover just why it continues to fascinate and perplex people from all over the world.
You may not know that Stonehenge is not the only ancient site in this region. Yet, in fact, a mere 25 miles north of Stonehenge is the impressive Avebury complex, which is a robust contender to be the most grandiose of all the residual prehistoric earthworks in Europe. The Avebury stone circle is actually much greater than that of Stonehenge – but the stones are smaller. A strong benefit that comes of visiting Avebury is that you can in fact touch its stones. Woodhenge, which consists of a circle of wooden posts, is an even more obscure and oft overlooked landmark.
Theories as to the use of Stonehenge range from the eminently believable to the absurd. In the twentieth century, both Fred Hoyle and Gerald Hawkins fascinatingly argued that not only was Stonehenge used as an observatory, but also to calculate future astronomical events such as eclipses. Yet it is probably von Däniken’s theory about Stonehenge that has led to the most furore, conflict and general disputation. Däniken claims that either extraterrestrials, or humans who were aided by extraterrestrials, built Stonehenge. He then goes on to argue that Stonehenge is an exact replica of our solar system, including the asteroid belt.
Why not merge a visit to Stonehenge with visits to its nearby districts, which hold their own captivating and idiosyncratic attractions? A combination Bath and Stonehenge tour from London is one of the most extraordinary tours you can do. Bath is, without a doubt, one of the most absorbing destinations to explore in the UK. An especially great number of visitors assemble to view the extraordinary sunrise at the summer solstice.