Dorset's hillforts, a visitor's guide

Walking along Hambledon Hill

Rich in archaeology, hillforts allow us to step back in time and re-imagine the lives and livelihoods of our ancestors. Dorset’s hillforts give visitors extraordinary opportunities to experience nature throughout the seasons.

The Wessex hillforts and habitats project is helping to restore a healthy beautiful natural environment rich in archaeology.  It is an inspiring project connecting communities and volunteers with heritage and nature. Through the project access, interpretation and visitor welcome has been improved and a visitor’s guide has been produced. The project has been part funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development.

A new guide, produced by the National Trust and available to download below, introduces you to the Iron Age hillforts of Dorset. Many were built more than 2,000 years ago and all are significant landmarks. It is easy to understand why our ancestors chose these places in which to live and to defend themselves.

Often standing in prominent isolation in the landscape, you can get a sense of their positional power whilst enjoying panoramic views across the countryside.

Take the view from the top, tune into nature all around you, and look for the footprints of the Iron Age round houses at your feet while you walk.

We hope it inspires you to visit, explore and enjoy them. 

To find out more, contact Marie McLeish, project manager:

Dorsets hillforts, a visitors guide (PDF / 2.6875MB) download