A short trip to the Preselli Hills
This makes for a good excursion (about 30-40 minutes by car) from the Cardigan area.
On a wet, scrappy November day the hills looked a strange russett colour with indigo views.
The bluestones of Stonehenge come from here: they are thought to have been hewn from the tor of Carn Menyn.
An ancient track, the Golden Road, runs near the tor - once a trade route from the Wessex downs to Ireland .
The picture is of Pentre Ifan, a Bronze-Age megalithic site dating from 4000 B.C. The horizontal capstone is estimated to weigh 40 tons (how do they know?). It is a wild and wonderful setting and affords lovely views of the mysterious Hill of the Angels.
Those who are intrigued by the existence of an ancient chapel of St Elvis in the Preselli Hills might be interested in this report, from BBC news website (5th June 2000):
The king of rock and roll Elvis Presley may have been Welsh. A Cardiff academic has published new evidence that Elvis's ancestors came from the Preseli hills in west Wales. It is claimed the Presleys hailed from west Wales.
Fans who make the pilgrimage to Graceland in the American Deep South, have long believed their hero was of mixed Scottish and Cherokee blood. But Terry Breverton, who lectures in business studies at University of Wales Institute, Cardiff, claims in his new book .. that this is a distortion of the truth.
According to Mr Breverton, his roots are in west Wales - the name Presley is related to Preseli - a hill range in Pembrokeshire. Supporting his theory is the legend of St Elvis of Muster who, it is said, baptised St David. Mr Breverton claims the family could well have had links with a nearby chapel dedicated to St Elvis - the only one known in Britain. His dead twin, Jesse Garon Presley, had a Welsh second name, and his mother Gladys had a Welsh name too," said Mr Breverton.
- Hiking and Walking
Hillforts occur in great numbers in West Wales. These are often smaller than the great hillforts of southern England, but there are many more of them. The best-known, and the most extensively excavated, is Castell Henllys, where Harold Mytum has not only excavated most of the interior - this Iron Age site has been the subject of an ongoing excavation for more than twenty years - but also an exercise in reconstruction archaeology whereby experiments in prehistoric farming have been practised. Four roundhouses and a granary have been reconstructed on their original Iron Age foundations
I was lucky enough to visit Castell Henllys on a trip as part of my archaeology degree, and had a great time wandering around looking at the Soay sheep, and sitting in a roundhouse listening to my lecturers.
Take the A487 from Newport to Cardigan. About 6.4km from Newport, the site is signposted. Turn left to get to site car park and the site is only a 100m walk.
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