An ancient site with myths and legends

Part of the South Dorset Ridgeway ancient landscape, the barrow was built on the ridge with stunning views to the coastline and beyond.

Grey Mare and her Colts

Part of the South Dorset Ridgeway ancient landscape, this long barrow was built on the ridge with stunning views to the coastline and beyond.

This long rectangular mound was a Neolithic burial monument, probably built around 5000 years ago and is likely to have been used for generations of a local community who lived close by. The barrow was built high on the ridge, with views to the coastline and beyond. The walk on Map 3 of our Field Guide series, with great views takes you to these ancient stones and you can use our app to get a taste of the myths and legends associated with these stones.

Long barrows are associated with the Neolithic period (6000-4500 years ago) and the South Dorset Ridgeway boasts at least 10 of them! These long earth and stone mounds would have contained a burial chamber for several burials. Three unusually long mounds also exist from this early period, known as ‘bank barrows’. These don’t appear to be to be associated with burial and may have defined the boundaries of land ownership.

Grey Mare at Sunset photo by Tony Gill

Discover the South Dorset Ridgeway - the Land of Bone and Stone

Hidden in the hills between Dorchester and Weymouth lies a remarkable landscape just waiting to be discovered.

This is the South Dorset Ridgeway, not just an ancient trackway but a ridge of high land that has attracted people for thousands of years – a special place to celebrate life and bury their dead.

Experts tell us that this ridge of land is as important as Stonehenge and Avebury for the scale of monuments and what they tell us of life in the past. But without a stone henge, this vast ceremonial landscape remains one of the UKs best kept secrets!

You don’t need to be a history buff to enjoy this ‘land of bone and stone’ – it’s an intriguing mix of wildlife, geology and history all wrapped up in modern day life.

The South Dorset Ridgeway Explorer Guide will show you that the South Dorset Ridgeway is a great place not just to celebrate life but to live it too. Whether you’re interested getting out and about with the kids, letting off steam, going for a hike, spotting wildlife or simply enjoying a stunning view … you’ll find plenty to do here.