If you love outdoor walks and historic settings then Danebury Hill Fort is a great free day out in Hampshire, UK. Being from Hampshire, I feel blessed to know a lot about this little corner of the world, including some places that are off the beaten track for visitors. In the post, find out how you can see a monument to British history, Danebury Hill Fort.
Where is Danebury Hill Fort?
Danebury Iron Age Hill fort is located near Andover, Hampshire in the UK. Like most of the UK, history will surround you. As a result, there are plenty of other interesting places to see nearby. Within driving distance of Danebury Hillfort, you’ll find Stonehenge, Highclere Castle where Downton Abbey is set and Winchester – the medieval capital of England.
What is the history of Danebury Hill Fort?
Danebury Hill fort is an important archaeological site and nature reserve. Consequently, It is one of the most studied Iron Age Hillforts in Europe. The Iron Age was the period of time between the end of the Bronze Age and the start of the Roman period (700BC to AD43). Found evidence suggests that the fort was built 2500 years ago and occupied for nearly 500 years.
Excavations of the Hillfort took place between 1969 and 1988 and many of the objects found can be viewed at the nearby Andover Museum Of Iron Age.
As you can see from the satellite image on Google Maps below, the Iron Age Hillfort was made with defence in mind. You can see a ring of ramparts and ground slopes, leading to a focal highpoint that was used for religious gatherings and important meetings.
What was life like at Danebury Hill Fort?
Firstly, the people who lived here were mostly farmers, living off the land keeping animals such as sheep and cattle. Life was harsh here in this community of around 300 people.
Furthermore, perhaps this harshness led people to seek solace in religion. The people here followed the pagan belief, with shrines and temples located at the highest point of the fort for people to pray and make offerings. The Pagan beliefs meant the people here believed that their gods lived in nature, found within the rivers, trees and plants.
Why visit Danebury Hill Fort?
Danebury Hill Fort is a quiet and beautiful outdoor location, so perfect for chilled-out walks, picnics, learning about history and taking some great pictures.
However, one of my favourite parts of visiting Danebury is the adorable wild horses that you can see happily grazing the grass. They are so tame and are just pretty content to wander around and mind their own business.
Therefore, a walk around the hillfort to explore this historically important site is an enjoyable free thing to do in Hampshire. It’s such a stunning location after all, and importantly, it is also a protected nature reserve.
Here’s some more information if you want to visit Danebury Iron Age Hillfort:
How to get here:
From Andover, you can catch the number 77 bus towards Stockbridge which has a stop outside the entrance to the Hillfort.
It’s an easy location to reach by car, with its own dedicated car park at the entrance with free parking.
It is free to enter the Hillfort, making it a great budget-friendly day out in Hampshire.
Nearby things to do:
- During your visit, continue on the bus to Stockbridge to grab a highly praised gourmet lunch at one of the many acclaimed restaurants in this small town. Click here to find out more about Stockbridge.
- On the other hand, you can visit Andover and learn more about the Hillfort and the Museum Of Iron Age.
- Whilst in the area, take a trip to the Bombay Sapphire Distillery in nearby Laverstoke.
- Pay a visit to the museum of Army Flying located just a few minutes’ drive down the road. Here you can learn about the history of the British Army Flying.
Other things to do in Hampshire:
- Take a trip to Southampton to discover the history of the Titanic.
- Have afternoon tea in the New Forest and enjoy village life.
- Visit Portsmouth to see the historic Mary Rose
Where to stay in Hampshire:
Looking to stay in Hampshire? Here are some great nearby hotels.
Thank you for reading this blog post about Danebury Hillfort. For more information about the historical site, you can visit the Hantsweb website.
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