Top 10 things to see and do at Hambledon Hill

Our ranger has put together his top 10 things to see and do at Hambledon Hill, including enjoying the climb, exploring the ramparts and hunting for chalk downland flora.

Climb the hill

It's a steep, but rewarding, adventure.

Lovely counrtyside views from Hambledon Hill

Enjoy the views from the top

Look for the chalk ridge of Cranborne Chase to the east, Shaftesbury and King Alfred's Tower to the north, and the distant Purbeck Hills to the south.

Pack a picnic

Make it as simple or extravagant as you like, and spread a blanket out to sit and enjoy the views at leisure.

Views along the ramparts on Hambledon hillfort

Explore the ramparts

The ramparts (banks and ditches) indicate the site of an Iron Age settlement and, over two thousand years on, they remain incised and dramatic.

Experience the weather in its full glory

Hambledon is a wonderful place to experience the thrills of showers and watching the shadows travel across the countryside of the Blackmore Vale below.

Delicate yellow flora in the chalk downland of Hambledon

Get down on your knees and explore the chalk downland flora of this National Nature Reserve

Miniature flowers cover the slopes, starting in the spring with Cowslips and Spring gentian, through summer Yellow rattle, Squinancywort, Fairy flax and orchids, and ending with the delicate spirals of Autumn lady's tresses.

Fly a kite

There is plenty of space at Hambledon and usually a fine breeze blowing up on the hill.

Wrap up warm, bring a torch and hunt for glow worms

Glowing after sunset from May to August, and most frequent in July, these endangered beetles have a green luminescence and are one of the UK's natural wonders.

Green Hairstreak Butterfly

Search for butterflies in summer

You can see the Marbled white, Dark green fritillary, Adonis blue, Chalkhill blue and Green hairstreak. The blue butterflies have remarkably close relationships with the downland ants - as caterpillars they sing to the ants and live underground in anthills. These anthills are visible as small bumps on the slopes.

Find a good spot

Just close your eyes, breathe, and let your mind wander.