Within the North Wessex Downs, there’s an area near the villages of Uffington and Woolstone that’s brimming with ancient history and legend.
There are three fantastic sites here: Uffington Castle, the White Horse and Dragon Hill.
Each of these places has its own amazing history and stories to tell, and what’s more, they’re all within easy walking distance of each other too.
Uffington Castle is a rare example of a large Iron Age hillfort.
It was built thousands of years ago here upon Whitehorse Hill, proudly watching over the surrounding Dorset countryside.
The castle is gone now, long since lost to time.
However, you can still see the earthworks where it would have once been, and thanks to objects like pottery and coins uncovered here during excavations, we have a great idea of what life would have been like for the ancient civilisation that lived here.
The castle might be gone, but the hill it stood upon remains, so you can get a great idea of the kind of breathtaking views it would have had over the lovely English landscape.
…near a horse on a hill…
The reason Whitehorse Hill got its name is because of the remarkable chalk horse drawn on its hillside.
This massive depiction of a white horse is thought to be from the Bronze Age, possibly holding some kind of religious significance.
There are actually a total of 16 white horses like this one found throughout the UK, but the one here is thought to be the oldest, dating back over 3,000 years.
Centuries ago, people would gather at this white horse and hold festivals around it.
It’s easy to see why: it’s an incredibly impressive landmark even today, one that would have easily drawn in folk from all around.
…by the lair of a dragon!
The final of the three attractions here is Dragon Hill, a place of massive mythological significance.
It’s a strange hill with a flattened top, and a small patch of chalk where no grass will grow - unusual for sure, but not that impressive until you hear the story behind it.
What gave this hill its name was the fact that St George is said to have slain a dragon on this very spot.
It’s a very famous English legend, the tale of a hero who killed a dragon that was demanding human sacrifices from the locals.
In fact, the patch of grassless chalk is theorised to be the spot where the dragon’s blood was spilled, so keep an eye out for it!
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