Secrets of Stonehenge Landscape walk
A walk that explores some of the lesser-known areas of the Stonehenge Landscape with great views of the famous stone circle, some amazing archaeology and exciting wildlife to be seen.
This 3.5 mile trail starts from the English Heritage Visitor Centre but there is an option to shorten the walk by getting off the visitor shuttle at Fargo woodland (less than a mile to the stone circle) and/or take the visitor shuttle from Stonehenge back to the visitor centre. Within Fargo woodland there are Bronze Age burial mounds and lots of wildlife to discover as well as a useful information hub. It's also a great place for a picnic.
English Heritage Visitor Centre, grid ref: SU099428
From the English Heritage Visitor Centre follow the pedestrian path onto the road and head east in the direction of Stonehenge. Keep a look out for a pedestrian gate on your left. Please note that if you would like to shorten this walking trail and you have a ticket from the visitor centre then you are able to take the visitor shuttle to Fargo woodland, which stops near to Step 6 on the map.
Go through the pedestrian gate and head slightly left towards a gate on the west end of the Cursus monument.
We have restored the chalk grassland around Stonehenge after many years of intensive farming. As you walk along this field keep an eye out for colourful wildflower displays in summer which attract butterflies such as the marbled white. Sheep and cattle grazing helps to keep the grasslands rich in wildlife.
Once at the west end of the Cursus go through the pedestrian gate and take time to read the information panel and take in the views. Once you have read the information board head along the woodland fence line to your right until you reach a pedestrian gate.
This huge enclosure just north of Stonehenge is thought to be around 500 years older than Stonehenge itself. Stretching 1.75 miles (2.8km) from east to west, its low earthworks form a massive thin oblong. The name 'Cursus' is Latin for 'raceway', a name given to it by 18th-century antiquarian William Stukeley, who thought it was a Roman chariot track.
Enter Fargo woodland through the pedestrian gate and head along the wood chip path. Look out for a large Bronze Age burial mound (barrow) on your right known as the Monarch of the Plain. As this barrow comes into view look for a grassy path on your left. Look out for the roe deer which use the woods around Stonehenge for food and shelter.
Take the left turning and follow the track. The path opens up to a lovely open area within the woodland surrounding another Bronze Age barrow and offers great views across the Stonehenge Landscape. Make your way around the barrow and rejoin the wood chip path heading right. Look out for butterflies that can be seen feeding on the wildflowers on and around the barrows.
Bronze Age Barrows
Please note that in order to protect the archaeology for future generations we ask that you do not walk on top of the burial mounds as this can cause erosion.
You have now reached the Fargo woodland information hub. This is a good place to get your bearings, admire the view and take in some of the features of the landscape. Can you see Stonehenge? Once you've read the information board, exit via either of the gates and head for the group of barrows straight in front of you. Keep to the left of the barrow group and look for a pedestrian gate on the fence line.
Once at the barrows go through the pedestrian gate. After exploring the barrows and reading the information board leave through the pedestrian gate opposite the one you came and then head in the direction of Stonehenge.
You have now reached Stonehenge. If you would like to visit the stone circle and you have a ticket from the visitor centre then head along to the monument. Please also note that if you have a ticket then you are able to take the visitor shuttle back to the visitor centre from this point. If you would like to complete this walking trail then head south along the byway and look for a kissing gate on your right.
Within the Stonehenge World Heritage Site, we manage 827 hectares (2,100 acres) of downland surrounding the famous stone circle.
Head into the field from the kissing gate and walk in a westerly direction away from the stone circle and look out for a pedestrian gate on your right at the entrance to an area of woodland. This is another chalk grassland restoration field and a good place to spot hares, especially further away from the road.
Go through the pedestrian gate into the wood and through the next gate opposite you. Be careful crossing the road and look for the pedestrian gate back into Fargo wood slightly to your right.
Once in Fargo woodland turn left and head along the wood chip path with the fence line on your left. You will eventually see the Monarch of the Plain burial mound again. Keep to the left of this monument and head straight on until you reach a pedestrian gate.
Go through the gate and retrace your steps to the gate at Step 2 and then head back along the road to the visitor centre.
English Heritage Visitor Centre, grid ref: SU099428
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