Stonehenge in a nutshellStonehenge is perhaps the oldest pre-historic structure in Europe and has gained wide attention as an ancient relic that does not quite explain its reason for existence. Even years after its discovery, Stonehenge remains shrouded in mystery, legends, and science that are still being deciphered. Stonehenge is a strange circular design made up of horizontal and vertically positioned rectangular rock slabs. The standing slabs have been heaved and fixed over time since 2000 BC, under the supervision of many people. It has survived the changes and challenges of time and continues to stand today. For years, this enigmatic relic has drawn millions of visitors to its location. Anyone with a UK tourist visa should definitely include this attraction in their trip to England. Except during the Christmas period, Stonehenge is open for visitors every day. However, booking your admission ticket beforehand is the only way to ensure access to this attraction at the time and day you choose.
Fascinating facts about Stonehenge
- Stonehenge is one of Europe’s oldest tourist attractions. It is a prehistoric monument with a history dating back to 2000 BC. One of the most interesting facts about Stonehenge is that it is 500 years older than the Egyptian Pyramids. It is presumed to have been built in three stages and has been rebuilt and rearranged over the years. There are no written records documenting the construction of this attraction, other than the intuition about when it began. Writings from the 12th century and a painting from the 16th century are the earliest records of this attraction.
- The stone monument is the world’s only surviving lintelled stone circle. Many people speculate about who built Stonehenge. Researchers discovered evidence that the earliest builders were of Aegean descent.
- Bluestone, Sarsen, and Welsh Sandstone are among the stones used in construction. All of the stones were brought from remote locations in the United Kingdom. The stone weighs between 25 and 30 tonnes on average. The perplexing mystery of how such heavy monoliths were transported in the Neolithic era when technology and engineering breakthroughs did not exist, remains a source of discussion.
- Another fascinating fact about Stonehenge is that it was sold at an auction! Since its discovery in the 16th century, Stonehenge has changed ownership several times. Cecil Chubb, a local businessman, purchased it at an auction in 1961 and donated it to the UK government for restoration and care as a national historic monument.
- No one has been able to pinpoint a specific reason for the construction of Stonehenge. Based on the human remains discovered at Aubrey Holes, archaeologists believe it was built as a Neolithic burial site. According to the data gathered, the bodies were cremated and then transported to Stonehenge. Many people were transported from afar. The formation of stones is also considered to have astronomical significance and was used to track the position of the sun and moon. There are theories that Stonehenge is associated with astronomical events such as eclipses and equinoxes.
- The structure is associated with many legends and is possibly England’s most studied relic. Many historians and archaeologists are curious about the origin and purpose behind the construction of this attraction. Charles Darwin studied the site in the late 1800s and mentioned it in his books.
- Stonehenge is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The entire site encompasses 2600 hectares, which is nearly seven times the size of New York’s Central Park. The site is made up of more than just the stone circle; it also includes the surrounding landscape and archaeological sites.
- Stonehenge’s construction is assumed to be incomplete. It took years to complete the initial work that is currently on display at Salisbury Plain, and it is still regarded as unfinished. Since there was never a written record of how or why it was built, it is unknown what the finished version would look like.
- Some giant boulders have carvings on their surfaces which are depicted to be from the Bronze Age.
- Stonehenge is thought to have served as an ancient calendar. The phenomenon of it aligning with the sun is demonstrated when the sun perfectly aligns and rises during the longest day on Earth and sets exactly at this point on the shortest day of the year at Stonehenge’s Heel stone.
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