West Kennet Avenue and Long Barrow

West Kennet Avenue and Long Barrow

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Time seems to have left Avebury and the land surrounding the village alone for the past few thousand years.

Wherever you look, wandering through the streets or taking a stroll through the fields, in every direction history quite literally bulges out of the earth.

Back to an ancient world

Today we can only catch glimpses of the ancient world through relics left behind.

But Avebury has a little more on offer than most.

With long barrows here and stone circles there, ancient avenues bordered by standing stones between the two– you can start to build a pretty good idea of Avebury 5000 years ago.

West Kennet Long Barrow

Our first destination? We’re off to West Kennet Long Barrow just outside town.

Dating back around 5500 years, the barrow has sat watching over the Wiltshire countryside for longer than most of the history you’ve ever heard of.

After passing through the farmland surrounding it, the rising mound of earth steals all your attention.

It’s dramatically impressive, stretching over 100 meters in length and the stones guarding the entranceway reach up taller than a person.

Into the barrow

Immediately, the temptation to start exploring inside the barrow fills you; its gaping stone entranceway inviting you under the earth.

The light quickly dims as you enter, bouncing off the stone walls creating an impression of bones and watching skulls.

But the atmosphere of the place is one of peace, not spookiness, and the realisation this was built to celebrate life and not haunt it becomes clear.

Strolling down the ancient avenue

Between the mysterious stones of the Sanctuary, and the village one-and-a-half miles away – the West Kennet Avenue has been watching people come and go for over 5000 years.

Many original stones still line the way today, guiding you down the wide avenue.

After all this time, somehow they still hold an incredible gravity, pulling along your every step.

With the mighty Silbury Hill and West Kennet Long Barrow off in the distance, the avenue finally leads you to the most famous of the area’s Neolithic sites– Avebury henge and stone circles.

History bursts through the land in every direction at Avebury, time to step into the past and wander among it yourself.

The past awaits, ready to discover it?

Gunsite Road,
Marlborough,
Wiltshire,
GB SN8 1QH

Free parking