Who needs a huge trip down to the likes of Stonehenge when we’ve got our own tucked away in the Yorkshire Dales? The Druid’s Temple, which can be found near Masham, is a folly built in the woods in the 18th Century. It is an impressive place that has an air of magic about it, and unlike Stonehenge, it doesn’t cost anything to get in.
The beautiful woodland at Bivouac is home to the Druid’s Temple which is steeped in history and intrigue. Styled after the stone circles and popular stone monuments like Stonehenge, The Druid Temple was built to give farmers a way of earning an income during hard times. It’s said that the Druid Temples were built in the 1700s by William Danby of Swinton Park paid workers a wage for a day of labour.
They’re hundreds of years old, and despite their less than mythical nature, there are still myths and legends surrounding these ancient rocks. The mystical connections are probably fairly insubstantial, but it is rumoured that a hermit lived there for many years.
They’re located near Leighton Reservoir surrounded by moorland. Within the woodland, you’ll find numerous standing stones, which attract walkers, families and bird watchers.
There is a range of walking trails within the woodland that Swinton Estate allows walkers to use. The Druids Temple is not far from the Bivouac’s reception, and easy to find with a public footpath that leads from the road to the main site of the folly.
Unlike Stonehenge, you can touch and climb up these rock formations, and it is a nice quiet spot for a walk in the woods and a picnic surrounded by the wondrous nature of the Yorkshire Dales.
The Danby family also built Swinton Park, a luxury castle hotel, that has beautiful architecture with the earliest parts dating from 1695.