Cheddar Gorge

Cheddar Gorge

Cheddar Gorge is not exactly the Grand Canyon, but it is still an impressive sight - England’s deepest ravine, 453 ft high, carved from the soft limestone hills by the course of Cheddar Yeo. Further erosion has gouged out numerous subterranean caves, some of which were inhabited since long ago: the skeleton of a 9000-year -old man – Cheddar man, was discovered here, as well as polished skulls that some archaeologists believe may have been used as prehistoric cups. It is said that Cheddar man DNA tests have proved that a local schoolteacher is his direct descendant.

This is a spectacular ravine cut through the Mendip plateau by fast -flowing streams during the integral phases of the last Ice Age Rising. Mendip Hills( Mendips) are nestled  between the fertile fields  of north Somerset and the marshy Levels to the south. It is forge a plateau of gorges, dry valleys and collapsed caverns that runs for 22miles across the centre of the country. All of these make the Mendips are haven both for wildlife  and walkers. If you want to delve deeper you can do a caving expedition, or just admire the view while ambling along the 3 mile clifftop trail.

The two main caves open to the public are on the southside of the Gorge, owned by Longleat Estate. The extensive Gough’s Cave and the smaller Cox’s Cave are both named after their respective discoverers. Both are known for their geology, and it has been suggested that the caves were used for maturing cheese  in prehistoric times. Gough's cave, which was discovered in 1903, leads around 400 m (437 yd) into the rock-face, and contains a variety of large rock chambers and formations. Cox's Cave, discovered in 1837, is smaller but contains many intricate formations.

Cheddar has given its name to a rich cheese that originates from here and is now produced worldwide. Cheddar Cheese has been handcrafted here for nearly 850 years.  The caves is the gorge provide the perfect environment of constant temperature and high humidity for storing and maturing the cheese.

Experience gallery



At a glance

  • Activity

    Climbing, Walking
  • Address

    Somerset , Cheddar , The Cliffs

"The largest and the most outstanding gorge ion Britain"

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