NEED TO KNOW
LOCATION Creswell is 22 miles (35 km) north of Nottingham in the East Midlands of England
DATING FROM Around 8000 BC
DAYTIME TEMPERATURES Jan: 39°F (4°C); Apr: 46°F (8°C); Jul: 61°F (16°C); Oct: 51°F (11°C)
England is not particularly known for its rock art, so there was considerable excitement in 2003 when prehistoric paintings showing bison, birds, and an ibex were discovered at Creswell Crags, the only example of Ice Age rock art so far discovered in the country. Paintings apart, the Crags offer a rich insight into life during the last Ice Age, between 50,000 and 10,000 years ago.
The caves here, carved by centuries of erosion out of the flanks of a beautiful limestone gorge, were used by hunters as a temporary camp during their seasonal pursuit of herds of migrating mammoths, bison, and reindeer. Creswell is one of the most northerly points they ever reached.
Getting There and Around
The nearest international airport is the East Midlands airport near Nottingham. London to Nottingham by train takes about 2 hours. There are train and bus links from Nottingham to Creswell station and the Crags respectively.
When to Go
May to September offers the best chance of good weather, though it may rain at any time of year. Book in advance for cave tours.