A 40-minute drive from Trowbridge on the A361 toward Swindon will bring you to Avebury. This World Heritage site, the largest stone circle in the world, surrounds the village of Avebury itself. The quintessential English village with its church, cricket pitch and the Red Lion pub, take a stroll down its main street and admire the beautiful cottages and gardens. Visit the 500-year-old Avebury Manor (owned by the National Trust), and see how the Scottish archaeologist Alexander Keiller lived, whilst extensively excavating the prehistoric site of Avebury itself. This is a manor house experience like no other, as visitors are encouraged to touch the furniture, handle the pots and pans and even take a rest on the beds!
Explore the stone circle itself (just remember that this is also home to a number of local sheep), which has been shrouded in mystery and mysticism for centuries, and the nearby West Kennet Long Barrow, The Avenue, and Silbury Hill, the largest artificial mound in Europe. Drive a little further to nearby Hackpen Hill, with its White Horse, and walk part of the Ridgeway, with sweeping views of Avebury, the Marlborough Downs and Salisbury Plain.
Situated within the Stonehenge and Avebury World Heritage Sites, the quaint village of Avebury is a must-see whilst visiting the area. Avebury is home to the largest prehistoric stone circle.
Less restrictive and much older than Stonehenge, visitors are able to walk amongst the Neolithic stones and more often than not the sheep, who have one of the most scenic homes in the county!
Leaving no stone unturned . . .
Without a doubt, the Neolithic Stone circle is what most visitors come to see. Children and adults alike can explore the fields that house these marvels – what’s more, this part of the site is free for everyone to explore.
Explore History . . .
You will also find the Alexander Keiller Museum, named after the archaeologist that excavated Avebury in the 1930s. There are two sites here: the Stable displays treasures excavated from the World Heritage Site, and the Barn Gallery houses interactive displays and activities revealing the story of the prehistoric landscape.
If it’s a manor you seek . . .
Avebury Manor has been transformed by a partnership between the National Trust and the BBC, creating a hands-on experience that gives all visitors an insight into the lives of the people who once resided there. This is a manor like no other, as visitors are encouraged to touch the furniture, handle the pots and pans and even take a rest on the beds!
Breathe in the fresh air . . .
There are walking challenges available in Avebury. The Wiltshire Landscape Walking Challenge explores the National Trust Site or the Stonehenge and Avebury Walking Challenge takes you on a journey over two halves of the World Heritage Site.
Working up an appetite . . .
Avebury is a the perfect place for a picnic with its open fields and designated areas. However, the very British weather can be unpredictable so if you’d like to avoid soggy sandwiches in the rain then you will be pleased to know that there are several places in the village to rest your feet and enjoy some food and drink. The Red Lion is situated in the middle of the village serving a range of soft and alcoholic drinks and traditional pub food. It is also said to be haunted and has appeared on Living TV’s ‘Most Haunted’.
There are also cosy cafes to grab a quick bite and some independent shops to pick up an souvenir or something unusual and unique..
How To Get There
A relatively easy and picturesque car journey that takes about 40 minutes. Please keep in mind that on sunny days, Avebury can be quite busy, therefore parking can be tricky . . . it’s almost like our ancestors didn’t think about parking in 10,000 BC.
We wouldn’t recommend walking to Avebury from Trowbridge as it would take over six hours! The good news is, though that there are plenty of of great walks at Avebury.
A 21.5 mile bike ride (roughly 2 hours) will take you from the centre of Trowbridge to the centre of Avebury. This is a hilly terrain so if you would like an easy bike ride, this may not be for you.