Views for miles, an Iron Age hillfort, buzzards and skylarks…
Just south of Newbury near Old Burghclere, park at the bottom of Beacon Hill and embark on a lung-busting climb to the top. It will be worth it!
Views stretch across the Highclere Estate, over to Ladle Hill (another hillfort site) and on a clear day you may just be able to make out another Beacon Hill – in the South Downs. Continue on from the trig point to visit the grave of the fifth Earl of Carnarvon, who played a prominent part in archaeological expeditions to Egypt, where he and Howard Carter discovered and opened the tomb of Tutankhamun in 1922. Highclere Castle itself is home to the Carnarvon family.
The site is chalk grassland habitat – rich in wild flowers in spring and summer. Buzzards float on the breeze at eye-level and skylarks sing above you.