Glastonbury Tor Sunrise

© Ashley Stewart / Getty Images

Glastonbury Tor

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Why you should go

Topped by the ruined medieval Chapel of St Michael, the iconic hump of Glastonbury Tor is visible for miles around, and provides Somerset with one of its most unmistakable landmarks. This hill was an important pagan site and is now surrounded by various myths and legends. Whatever the truth, one thing's for certain – watching the sunrise from the top of the tor is an experience you won't forget in a hurry.

Ley lines and legends of Glastonbury Tor

The tor is the focal point for a wealth of local lore. According to Celtic legend, it is the home of Arawn or Gwyn ap Nudd, king of the underworld and lord of the faeries. A more famous legend identifies the tor as the mythic Isle of Avalon, where King Arthur was taken after being mortally wounded in battle, and where Britain's "once and future king" sleeps until his country calls again. Others believe that the tor marks an ancient mystical node where invisible lines of energy, known as ley lines, converge.

It's easy to see why the tor has inspired so many myths. It's a strange presence in an otherwise pan-flat landscape, and in ancient times (when the area around Glastonbury was covered by water for much of the year), the tor would indeed have appeared as an island, wreathed in mists and cut off by rivers, marshes and bogs.

Steps in a steep grassy hillside. A large church-like tower stands at the top of the hill.
There are steps in the steepest parts of the trail © Matthew Collingwood / Shutterstock

Tickets and other practicalities

The site is managed by the National Trust and admission is free (there are several donation boxes at the site, if you wish to make a contribution). It takes half an hour to walk up from the start of the trail on Well House Lane; the steepest sections are stepped.

There is no parking at the Tor. Between April and September a regular Park and Ride bus runs from St Dunstan's car park near Glastonbury Abbey to the trailhead on Well House Lane.

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