Stonehenge, an English Heritage site surrounded by mystery, as although it was founded 1000’s of years ago, to this day the true reason for it’s existence remains unknown.
For a long time visiting Stonehenge has been on my bucket list, as one of the most famous places in Britain it seemed essential to me to visit at least once in my life time. Last week I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to visit with my family as I bought my Mum tickets for her birthday.
Starting off our experience at Stonehenge my family and I parked up at the visitor centre and queued to pick up our tickets and guidebook which I had pre-ordered online for £4.99. Although when booking your tickets online you have to pick a specific time slot to arrive between, we arrived a little early and were let in just fine.
Before heading off to explore we decided to grab a quick bite to eat at the visitors cafe as we were hungry after a long two hour drive. For me being quite a fussy eater, I felt the options of food were slightly limited with a selection of sandwiches and pastries, none of which took my fancy. I settled for a giant homemade Bourbon biscuit which although wasn’t unpleasant to eat, wasn’t the best biscuit I’ve ever had either! My parents and sister opted for a pastry each and even though they enjoyed their food we all came to the mutual agreement that if we were to visit again we would bring our own lunch and have a picnic!
After we had eaten, we took the shuttle bus over to the site of Stonehenge, which is located a little way away from the visitors centre. You can also walk to the site which would take about half an hour, but as it was quite a windy day we decided against this. I imagine it would be quite lovely to walk down there though and had it have been sunnier I would have loved to.
We were a short distance away from the stones as the bus pulled up to drop us off and as I caught a glance of them from the window I was initially quite surprised at how small they were. Obviously distance fooled me as when I had gotten closer to the stones, I realised just how big they were!
One of the mysteries which lies around Stonehenge is how the stones got there in the first place, as they are so huge and all so intricately placed with some even laying on top of others, what kind of popeye could lift these things?? Obviously thousands of years ago the technology we have now didn’t exist, so it wouldn’t have been so easy to just lift and move giant stones around as you pleased. The stones laying flat across other stones were the most intriging as how on Earth could they be lifted? My family and I discussed this and we figured even with 50 men pushing the rocks it could possibly be done, but where would there be room for 50 men to get behind the stones first place?
As we walked around Stonehenge, there were little plaques around which we read for more information.
Even now, I’m still not entirely sure what Stonehenge is really about however I do know that it’s highly linked to the sun and the way it shines through the rocks. I wish I knew what the designers of Stonehenge were thinking when they created it… If only we could time travel back to the Neolithic times to ask them!
As we walked around Stonehenge, we saw so much more than just the ‘main’ stones. We saw the ‘Heel Stone’, a giant stone located opposite the main attraction just across the path.
I also saw a large sarson stone which had fallen onto the floor, partially hidden by the grass. On the outskirts of the main attraction there are little hills, where people used to be buried back in the Neolithic times.
Once we had seen all of Stonehenge (and bumped into my sisters old work colleague as we walked- how random) we took the shuttle bus back to the visitors centre where we browsed the gift shop. I bought some Stonehenge stickers for my scrapbook, a postcard and a mini stone which I am going to use as my gratitude rock.
We then explored a mini model village which showed us how the people lived back in the day when Stonehenge was first created. They lived in little huts with wooden beds which were super uncomfy to lie down on even for just one minute, I don’t know how people ever slept on them.
Then it was time to see the exhibition, with videos, pictures, and exhibition models it was really interesting to learn more about Stonehenge and how it has changed over the years. For example, 30 years ago when visiting Stonehenge you would be able to actually walk up to the stones and physically touch them whereas now unless you book a special visit to do this, you are no longer able to in order to protect the stones and their surrounding area.
The exhibition was our last experience of the day and information indulged, it was time to walk back to the car and start our journey home. I had an amazing day at Stonehenge with my family and it was really interesting to see the site in person, as it’s something I’ve always wanted to do. Stonehenge is a truly fascinating place and its crazy to think that its been there for so many thousands of years, how amazing!!
I would highly recommend visiting Stonehenge as it truly is an interesting day out and something really quite different to do, a chance to see a real wonder of the world. I am so happy that I can say ‘I’ve seen the stones’!!!
Have you ever been to Stonehenge? Would you like to go? Let me know in the comments below!
Thank you for reading,
Click here to visit the English Heritage website and learn more about Stonehenge.