Stonehenge Landscape Winterbourne Stoke barrows

Walking trail

Ranger's highlight: "This walk is all about the views - the panorama from the Winterbourne Stoke barrows, the first glimpse of Stonehenge as you make your way through the fields, the rolling farmland with thousands of years of history within it - simply breath-taking. The Winterbourne Stoke Barrows are particularly impressive and are a good refuge for chalk grassland flora, a highlight is the flowers and butterflies to be seen in this area in the late summer."

Along the way

The famous stone circle is just one part of the enormous ceremonial landscape on Salisbury Plain, development of which started more than 5000 years ago. Stonehenge contains the densest concentration of round barrows, ancient tombs containing the remains of people, anywhere is Britain. Through work of the National Trust, much of the landscape has been returned to chalk grassland, which protects the ancient monuments and grazing by sheep and cattle helps ensure you can enjoy wildflower displays, insects and birds in spring and summer.

Sainfoin

Map

Stonehenge Landscape

Start:

Stonehenge SP4 7DE

1

Standing at the byway crossroads, with Stonehenge behind you, turn left onto the byway and look for a kissing gate on your right.

2

Enter the field through the gate and head diagonally left towards two grassy mounds. A giant, prehistoric, wooden palisade once stood along here, dividing the landscape. This was also the site of the Stonehenge Aerodrome which lay to the west of Stonehenge a hundred years ago.

3

You can go through the gate and explore the two burial mounds (known as barrows). There are hundreds of barrows like this in the Stonehenge Landscape where some of the earliest people to use metal are buried. You can leave by the larger gate opposite. Continue slightly diagonally to your left, aiming for the road where you will find a gate into the next field.

4

Go through gate No. 25 then head diagonally to your right, aiming for the right hand side of the row of barrows you can just see ahead of you.

5

Go through the gate and enter the barrow cemetery. When you've read the information panel next to the gate, feel free to explore the barrow cemetery. The Winterbourne Stoke barrows are an important barrow group containing every different type of Bronze Age barrow. This is a great place for chalk flowers such as knapweed and field scabious as well as beautiful butterflies. After exploring the barrows, retrace your steps to the information panel.

6

Go through gate No. 23 and turn left to follow the fence line. Go through gate No. 21 and continue straight on along the fence line. Stonehenge Visitor Centre should be visible on your left and Stonehenge itself should just come into view on the right.

7

When you come to the end of the third field go over the stile in front of you and bear slightly right onto a track. Carry on straight ahead and go through a small wooden gate, No 20. Cross directly over the road watching out for Stonehenge shuttle buses which use the road. Climb over the stile in front of you. You are now entering the Fargo wood which contains several Bronze Age barrows; it has areas of hazel coppice and glades which attract butterflies in the summer months.

8

Continue straight on along the path until you reach the large barrow known as the Monarch of the Plain; this is one of the largest Bronze Age barrows in the Stonehenge Landscape. Skirt around the right-hand side of it and leave by the path on the opposite side. Follow the wood chipped path in front of you, then at the T-junction (with a metal gate in front of you), turn right. Ignoring all the gates to your left, continue on along the curving track, through another clearing with a large barrow in it, until you reach a large information panel.

9

After reading the information panel go through the gate in front of you and veer left towards the large grassy mounds of the Cursus Barrows.

10

Enter the Barrows through a pedestrian gate on the left hand side of the mounds. After reading the information panel leave through the pedestrian gate opposite the one you came through and head downhill towards Stonehenge and where you began your walk. If you have a ticket from the Visitor Centre then you can head to the stone circle.

End:

Stonehenge SP4 7DE

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Stonehenge Landscape Winterbourne Stoke barrows

Terrain

This walk follows wood-chipped woodland paths, rolling fields, hard tracks and pot-holed byways with pedestrian gates and stiles. Surfaces can be uneven and muddy with pot-holes and long tussocky grass within the barrow enclosures. This route also crosses a minor road and takes you alongside major roads, so please take care.

Stonehenge Landscape Winterbourne Stoke barrows

Contact us

Call 01672 539920 or visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/stonehengelandscape.

If you would like this information in alternative formats, please call us on 01672 539920 or email stonehenge@nationaltrust.org.uk

Stonehenge Landscape Winterbourne Stoke barrows

How to get here

Address
SP4 7DE (English Heritage car park). Grid reference: SU 12065 42338
By road

 

To reach the Stonehenge Visitor Centre Car Park (not National Trust), driving west along the A303, exit towards Devizes at Long Barrow roundabout. At Airman's Corner take the third exit and the Stonehenge car park is on your right.

Parking: A parking charge will apply at the Stonehenge Visitor Centre (not National Trust). National Trust members free with a National Trust car sticker on display.

SatNav: The postcode for Stonehenge Visitor Centre Car Park is SP3 4DX.

By foot

Stonehenge Down is a 2 mile (3.2kn) walk from Amesbury. There are several routes along byways and bridleways, either across Countess Farm or Coneybury Hill. Larkhill is 1 mile (1.6km) away across bridleways. Durrington Walls is ¾ mile (1.2kn) from Durrington and 1½ miles (2.4kn) from Amesbury, along small roads and bridleways. From Amesbury you can use an underpass to get under the A303 roundabout, then use the pavements along the A345 (Countess Raod). Next to Woodhenge the old A345 still exists, running parallel to the current road, where you can safely walk along the grass verge near the top end of the roundabout.

By bus

Salisbury train station to Stonehenge Visitor Centre. To reach the landscape from Amesbury take the Activ8 or the X5 buses, check www.connectingwiltshire.co.uk/plan.a.journey/tourism/travelling-to-stonehenge for more details.

By bicycle

Cycling is a great way to get to the Stonehenge Landscape with some wonderful views along the way. Just keep to the byways and bridleways. Route 45 runs from Salisbury up the Woodford Valley to Amesbury, east of National Trust land at Stonehenge. It then travels north to Marlborough and Swindon.

Stonehenge Landscape Winterbourne Stoke barrows

Facilities and access

  • Explore the ancient ceremonial landscape and wildlife surrounding Stonehenge.
  • Landscape guided walks, family events and workshops take place throughout the year. Please contact us before you visit.
  • Groups welcome - please contact us before you visit.
  • Stone circle, visitor shuttle and visitor centre exhibition free to National Trust members if a pre-booked ticket holder. Please bring your membership card with you to the ticket kiosk (please note this does not apply to National Trust staff cards).
  • A visitor shuttle service from the English Heritage Visitor Centre includes an optional stop at Fargo Woodland (National Trust), which is a great place to explore and enjoy a picnic - under a mile to Stonehenge.
  • English Heritage Pay and Display car park at Stonehenge visitor centre is free to Trust members if a pre-booked ticket holder.
  • Please note that if you have not booked ahead you may not be guaranteed a parking space (particularly on weekends and during peak season). Limited parking at Woodhenge car park (free).
  • Café at Stonehenge visitor centre (English Heritage).
  • Toilets located at the Stonehenge visitor centre (English Heritage).
  • Stone circle audio guide available for ticket holders.