Stonehenge: Facts and Information

Here are some facts about Stonehenge, England’s famous stone circle:

  • Stonehenge is the most well known prehistoric stone monument in the world. It is located in Wiltshire, England, on Salisbury Plain, about 8 miles from Salisbury.

  • Archaeologists believe the monument was built between 4,000 and 5,000 years ago, and was either a burial ground or used as a calendar. It is one of 900 stone circles in Britain.
  • Almost a million people visit Stonehenge each year, which is now a World Heritage site. Although the monument is several thousands of years old, the standing stones at nearby Avebury are even older.
  • Over the centuries some of the stones have been taken for other purposes, such as for building material. Today, there are 79 major stones, and some of them are 18 feet high and weigh up to 40 tons.
  • It has been estimated that constructing the huge monument would have taken over 30 million hours of labour. Some of the stones were dragged up to 200 miles to the site.


  • It is not known for certain exactly how the larger stones were moved. They may have been sailed up a river on wooden boats, or pulled on primitive sledges made from tree trunks.
  • The builders of Stonehenge used extremely advanced mathematical and structural techniques. The circle is in line with the midsummer sunrise, the midwinter sunset and the movements of the moon.
  • One legend says that the stones were placed there by the Devil. Another legend says that Merlin the Magician created the huge stone circle.
  • Some say that Stonehenge is built on several ley lines. These are supposedly lines of energy that run all over the world, connecting many ancient sites.
  • Stonehenge has been in many movies. In the 2010 film Stonehenge Apocalypse, an ancient machine is found under the stones, and in the 1985 film National Lampoon’s European Vacation, Chevy Chase accidentally reverses into the monument, knocking over all the stones.