Facts and Data
Official Unesco Page
Avebury World Heritage Site
Stonehenge (National Trust)
Stonehenge & Avebury
View photos from OUR PLACE the World Heritage collection
Portal to the Heritage of Astronomy
Avebury (National Trust)
Unesco World heritage since: 1986
Size of heritage: 4,985 ha
Stonehenge and Avebury, in Wiltshire, are among the most famous groups of megaliths in the world. The two sanctuaries consist of circles of menhirs arranged in a pattern whose astronomical significance is still being explored. These holy places and the nearby Neolithic sites are an incomparable testimony to prehistoric times.
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Stonehenge, Avebury and Associated Sites: A Window into Ancient Britain
The UNESCO World Heritage site of Stonehenge, Avebury, and Associated Sites is located in Wiltshire, England. This remarkable site encompasses two of the most iconic and enigmatic prehistoric monuments in the world, Stonehenge and Avebury, along with numerous other archaeological sites that provide valuable insights into the ancient history of Britain.
The history of Stonehenge dates back over 4,500 years, making it one of the oldest and most significant prehistoric monuments in Europe. Its construction spanned several phases, with the earliest known structure being a circular earthwork enclosure built around 3100 BCE. Over time, the monument evolved into its iconic form, consisting of a ring of massive standing stones, some weighing up to 25 tons, arranged in a circular pattern.
Avebury, located about 25 miles north of Stonehenge, is another awe-inspiring Neolithic henge monument. It consists of a large circular bank and ditch, enclosing an area of around 28 acres. Inside the bank, a massive stone circle originally comprised of around 100 stones, some of which weighed over 40 tons. Avebury also features two smaller stone circles, known as the Cove and the Southern Inner Circle.
These sites were not only places of religious and ceremonial significance but also served as important gathering places for the communities that inhabited the region during the Neolithic and Bronze Ages. The purpose and exact meaning behind these monuments remain a subject of speculation and fascination for archaeologists and historians.
Today, Stonehenge and Avebury, along with the surrounding landscape, are protected as a UNESCO World Heritage site. The management of the site is overseen by English Heritage, the National Trust, and other organizations, ensuring its preservation and accessibility for future generations.
Visitors to Stonehenge can explore the monument and its surrounding landscape through a carefully designed visitor center. The center provides a wealth of information about the history, construction, and significance of Stonehenge, using interactive displays and exhibits. Visitors can also take a shuttle bus to the monument itself and walk around the stones, experiencing their awe-inspiring presence up close.
Avebury, on the other hand, offers a more immersive experience, as visitors can freely wander among the stones and explore the surrounding landscape. The village of Avebury itself is nestled within the stone circle, creating a unique atmosphere that transports visitors back in time.
Both Stonehenge and Avebury continue to be places of pilgrimage and fascination for people from all over the world. The mystery and grandeur of these ancient sites, combined with their historical and cultural significance, make them truly remarkable and deserving of their UNESCO World Heritage status.
Stonehenge, Avebury, and Associated Sites provide a glimpse into the lives and beliefs of our ancient ancestors. They remind us of the ingenuity and skill of those who came before us, leaving behind enduring monuments that continue to captivate and inspire us today.
Hotels and places to stay
Acorn Lodge Gatwick Hotel
Lawn Guest House
Flexistay Ambers Gatwick Aparthotel
Gatwick White House Nr Gatwick Airport
Gatwick Turret Guest House
Gatwick Belmont Hotel
Villa Verde Gatwick
Masslink Guest House
Videos from the area
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Large airport - 2 mi (4 km) Redhill Aerodrome
Small airport - 3 mi (5 km) London Biggin Hill Airport
Medium airport - 14 mi (23 km) Fairoaks Airport
Small airport - 20 mi (33 km) Shoreham Airport
Medium airport - 24 mi (40 km) London Heathrow Airport
Large airport - 24 mi (39 km) London City Airport
Large airport - 25 mi (40 km) RAF Northolt
Medium airport - 28 mi (45 km) London Luton Airport
Large airport - 49 mi (79 km) London Stansted Airport
Large airport - 52 mi (84 km)
Bigger and popular cities in the wider vicinity are these:
- Camden Town
- City of London
- City of Westminster
- Ealing Broadway
These are some smaller cities that might be interesting. They are all rather close.