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Chalk Horses of Wiltshire

As with many tourists, I have an off-beat interest in seeing at least one Chalk Horse in Wiltshire. Who knows why we find something interesting! The challenge is days are short in January, but I can plan around that; I will have a car for the day. We will be on our way from Bath to Salisbury and Stonehenge and know there is one we can pass by. Any experiences to share?

Posted by
1301 posts

In my view the one that you really need to see is actually in Oxfordshire I believe, and that's the Uffington White Horse. Or dragon, opinion is divided! It's one of those mysterious monuments that can best be seen only from the air, but can be seen pretty well from the villages in the valley below, including Uffington, but you can also get 'up close and personal' with it by driving up towards Dragons Hill (another site where Saint George allegedly slew the dragon) and scrambling up the steep grass banks below it, or by approaching on foot via the Ridgeway National Trail (the horse is a little way off it beyond the earthworks of Uffington Castle).

The other chalk horses you can see carved into the escarpment on the road between Avebury and Swindon are pretty recent in comparison. Our own White Horse of Kilburn in Yorkshire dates only from the 1800s. It was once turned into a zebra by Leeds students who (temporarily) added stripes to it by applying black bin liners to it!

Hope you find what you are looking for!

Ian

Posted by
2460 posts

I've seen one, but don't remember which one. Imwould like to recommend that you visit Avebury and the nearby West Kennet Long Barrow. Off beat !

Posted by
3122 posts

It's rather slow going, but if you stay on the A4 out of Bath past Caine almost to Avebury, you'll come to the nice chalk horse at Cherhill. From Avebury (where you'll no doubt want to stop and walk at least some of the stone circle) you can make your way south to Stonehenge.

These are all back roads so you won't average much more than 35-40 miles/hour. And watch at the roundabouts so you don't make a wrong turn. With the short days in winter you'll want to get a very early start out of Bath in order to enjoy Stonehenge before closing time.

Posted by
13 posts

We were wending our way through what was probably a 'back road' as we looked for the White Horse. We must've been in some sort of military usage area as we saw several signs 'Watch for tanks'. LOL Then we noticed that what we'd thought were just paths off the road were actually where tanks had driven through. A short distance up the road, one of us looked up & there the White Horse was - up on the side of the hill in front of us. Crazy tourists!

Posted by
409 posts

There's a pretty spectacular white horse in North Yorkshire in Kilburn. Every time I see it, I'm amazed!

Not too far from the spectacular Ampleforth Abbey...... 500 years old; monks chanting; beautiful.....

Susan
Expat living in Ireland, married to a Yorkshireman