There are many prehistoric sites in Northern Ireland. If you are in Belfast, you might ant to leave the town for a day trip. Head to Ballynahatty. Here you will encounter some excavations and the well-known “Giant’s Ring.” While currently a subject of study, in the 19th century it acted as a racetrack. The high embankment performed the role of grand stands
The Giant’s Ring is, initially, a ring of earth. It spans some 180 meters or 595 feet in diameter. This massive earthwork is 3.5 meters in height. Breaking through the wall are several openings. Of the five gaps, three are intentional. The large dirt bank wall covers some three hectares or five acres. Its central focus seems to be a large dolmen or free standing stone. It is estimated the Giant’s Ring dates back to the late Neolithic period of prehistory. According to some archaeologists, it may be the product of the “Beaker People.” These same people created standing stone formations at both Ballynoe and Newgrange. The exact significance of the Giant’s Ring remains unclear. You can wander through a passage tomb or examine further excavations occurring just beyond the bank.
Address: Shaw's Bridge Off Ballynahatty Road, Lisburn, County Down, BT8 8LE, United Kingdom
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