Panorama taken from the top of the southern ramparts on Maiden Castle in Dorset. The picture, taken on 27 December 2009, shows just how steep the climb to the castle from the south is and a view over to
Maiden Castle Southern Ramparts - Dorchester visitor guide showing a virtual tour of 'Maiden Castle Southern Ramparts' linked to an interactive map with local and travel information. 360° panoramas from Dorset.
Maiden Castle lies just south of Dorchester in Dorset. One of the largest and most complex hill forts in Europe, Maiden castle is a dramatic demonstration of Iron Age fort construction, and a local tourist attraction. The site is now managed by English Heritage, who have placed interpretive placards around the site for visitors. Entrance to Maiden Castle is free.
This panorama shows the view south from the top of the ramparts from the western section of the fort. This was not part of the original enclosure, which only covered 6.4 (16 acres) to the east. During the mid 5th century BC, Maiden Castle was enlarged westward to cover a total of 19 ha (47 acres). At this time the site was surrounded by a single ditch and rampart.
The southern ditches and ramparts seen in this image were added in the Middle Iron Age. Four ramparts line the southern side of Maiden Castle. On the northern side, because the hill is steeper, only 3 were added. At the same time the eastern gate to Maiden Castle was enlarged and further protected.
More information about the history of this hill fort can be found on our main Maiden Castle page and also on the English Heritage site. The nearby Dorset County Museum in Dorchester contains extensive displays of the archaeology of the site.
Car: Maiden Castle is about 2 miles south of central Dorchester. Take the B3147 south turning right where signposted onto Maiden Castle Road. There is car parking at the end, then walk to the hill fort. If coming from further afield, take the A35 or A354 to the A35 / A354 roundabout and follow signs to Maiden Castle. It is about 10 miles north of Weymouth.
Train: Dorchester South and Dorchester West stations.