The Great Stones Way long-distance route opened in 2014, and runs from Barbury Castle, south of Swindon, to Old Sarum, near Salisbury - a total of 36 miles. However the route described in this guidebook is longer - a maximum of 53 miles, depending on the options taken. The guidebook also includes an optional start at Coate Water, while variant loops visit Avebury, the Alton Barnes White Horse and Stonehenge. The route passes over comparatively gentle terrain, passing Neolithic henges and stone circles, Bronze Age barrows, Iron Age hill forts and ancient churches. Meandering south across diverse terrain, from open chalk downs with far-reaching views over the Vale of Pewsey and Salisbury Plain, to the tranquil surroundings of the River Avon, the core of this history trail takes in many significant historic sites but it can be extended to take in more, including Salisbury's majestic cathedral. Described in 6 stages, it's perfect for an energetic long weekend or take up to a week to enjoy the prehistoric landscape.
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