With its dramatically jagged cliffs towering 450 feet over lush green valleys and limestone rock face pocked with caves, the Cheddar Gorge is not only England’s largest gorge, but one of the country’s most impressive natural wonders. Formed during the last ice age and cocooning the now-underground Cheddar Yeo River, the striking gorge winds its way through the Mendip Hills for almost three miles and makes a popular site for hiking and rock climbing.
The Cheddar Gorge has also become known for its collection of limestone caves and underground caverns, which made headlines back in 1903, when England’s oldest complete human skeleton was found there – a specimen nicknamed the ‘Cheddar Man’ and now kept at London’s Natural History Museum. The most famous of the caves include Gough’s Cave, with its spectacular stalactites; Cox’s Cave, with its unique calcite sculptures and mirror pools; and the adjoining Crystal Quest, where the caves are filled with JRR Tolkien-inspired fantasy figures.
The Cheddar Gorge is located in Somerset, southwest England, approximately 14 miles north of Glastonbury.