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Men-an-tol, Madron

4.5
#15 of 50 in Things to do in Penzance
Men-an-tol is located in Madron. With our custom trip planner, Penzance attractions like Men-an-tol can be center stage of your vacation plans, and you can find out about other attractions like it, unlike it, near it, and miles away.
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(Penzance is the nearest city to Men-an-tol)

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4.7
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  • August 17, 2017
    Apart from fishing villages, rocky coves and abandoned engine houses, the neolithic stones are worth seeking out, especially Men-an-tol near Madron just out of Penzance. Adds an incredible layer of my...  more »
  • August 13, 2017
    Men-an-tol is worth a visit if you like mysterious stones in a field! There's a layby to park in off the road (turn off just past Morvah from the coast, and then on your left after 5-10 minutes). It's...  more »
  • July 9, 2017
    The locals used this place still. If you as a pregnant woman by this ring crawls, would that bring good luck, according to superstition. Also be local newborns by this ring. Ancient pagan rituals. Nice to itself by the ring. Maybe it brings you luck?
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  • Mên-an-Tol (Cornish for 'stone with hole') is a megalithic structure and stands near the Madron to Morvah road in Cornwall. Limited parking on the road and a short footpath walk to the site. Other antiquities in the vicinity include the Mên Scryfa inscribed stone about 300 metres to the north and the Boskednan stone circle less than 1 kilometre to the northeast. Mên-an-Tol consists of three upright granite stones: a round stone with its middle holed out with two standing stones to each side, in front of and behind the hole. When seen at an angle from one side, the stones form a three-dimensional "101". The two side stones are both about 1.2 metres high. The westernmost stone was moved and brought into a straight line with the other two stones sometime after 1815. The holed stone is roughly octagonal in outline. It is 1.3 metres wide and 1.1 metres high; the circular hole is 0.5 m in diameter. The only other holed stone in Cornwall of this type is the Tolven Holed Stone which is in a garden near Helston. There is one other standing stone nearby, and six recumbent stones, some of which are buried. A cairn exists as a low stony mound just to the southeast. There are two other early Bronze Age barrows or cairns between 120 and 150 metres to the north. Mên-an-Tol is thought to date to either the late Neolithic or early Bronze Age making it around 3,500 years old or more, and the holed stone could originally have been a natural occurrence rather than being deliberately sculpted. The distribution of the stones around the site has led to the suggestion that the monument was actually part of a stone circle. In 1749 the site was first archaeologically investigated and a site plan was drawn. This shows that the megaliths were not in a line like today. It is also reported that farmers had taken away some stones from the area. In the 19th Century the local antiquary published several drawings of the site, and made the first suggestion that the stones could be the remains of a stone circle. In 1932 the first modern archaeological report was written. It was believed that the position of the stones was not as the prehistoric arrangement, but had been significantly changed. It was also thought that the holed stone might be part of a destroyed tomb. In 1993, the Cornwall Historic Environment Service published a detailed report with the latest research results. They suggested that the standing stones originated from a stone circle which consisted of 18 to 20 stones. The holed stone, however, could be part of a nearby portal tomb. It is also possible that the holed stone stood at the center of the stone circle and served to frame specific points on the horizon. Such a use of a holed stone is not known in other sites. Local folklore claims that Mên-an-Tol is supposed to have a fairy or piskie guardian who can make miraculous cures. In one story, a changeling baby was put through the stone so that the mother could get the real child back. (Evil piskies had changed her child, and the ancient stones were able to reverse their evil spell). If is said that local farmers with back or limb complaints would crawl through the hole to relieve their pain. I tried it but found that I wasn’t narrow enough!! Local legend also claims that if, at full moon, a woman passes through the holed stone seven times backwards, she will soon become pregnant. Another legend is that passage through the stone will cure a child of rickets (osteomalacia). For centuries, children with rickets were passed naked through the hole in the middle stone nine times.
  • Great walk to this remarkable land mark of Cornwall. They say that if you go through the hole, you will have good luck.(Or pregnancy!😂)
  • Lovely site!would welcome all good luck and fortune according to the legend!
  • Men an tol is found at TR20 8NU not as google says TR20 8YX that address is Bosigran Farm which is where we live. Imagine how many people/cars per day are coming down the farm track looking for stones. We have been trying for over 12 months to get this corrected, all help gratefully received thanks.
  • Smaller than it looks in the photos and from what I was told not the original layout but worth the walk. When you get there it's not far to the mine workings and ruins near by on the ridge.

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B&B, inns, and hotels along the narrow streets of the city center provide a convenient location for reaching the harbor and the city's other main attractions. Luxury resorts and four star hotels are typically found near the water and the Granite Coast Walk, while less expensive lodging is farther inland. Rental properties, such as cottages situated between St. Ives and Penzance, offer views and city access.
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