I found this weeks discussion on Stonehenge very interesting and eye-opening. I had no idea that Stonehenge was a part of such a large landscape composed of so much more than just the standing stones we often see in media/ popular culture. It was intriguing to learn about what archaeologists believe this grand site was used for, and how there still is no known definitive answer.
For this blog post I initially decided to search Stonehenge online to find an interesting article relating to it. Most likely an article about some theory as to what Stonehenge’s purpose was or who built it, etc. However, upon my search of Stonehenge, in the right hand side of the screen, a list of 991 Google reviews showed up. Overall, Stonehenge was “rated” 4.3 stars.
I found this pretty odd that Stonehenge was something that could be rated and reviewed on Google as would a business or shop. And then this got me to wondering as to what criteria people were reviewing and rating Stonehenge. It also reminded me of about mass flock of people who come o visit Stonehenge during the Summer Solstice that we discussed in class.
The reviews ranged from people enjoying learning about the history and in awe of such an incredible site; to, “Just a bunch of stones on the ground. Also I didn’t see a McDonalds anywhere NEAR the site! Where am I gunna get my fat American food from?! And like, where are the Aliens?!” (Yes, that’s an actual quote from a review I found…I’m hoping its sarcasm and a sad attempt to funny…)
Many reviewers seemed to be displeased with the increased commercialism that has taken over Stonehenge, supposedly causing it to become “overpriced” and “overrated”. Others claimed that by being at the site the experienced a spiritual enlightenment of sorts. Another pattern that I found humorous among the reviews was displeasure in Stonehenge itself, calling it basically just a bunch of rocks, but many seemed to really like that cafe nearby.
According to many of the reviewers, security is very strict. One person even posted, “Terrible it was so stupid I kicked one of the stones and the it fell over and I was put in a jail in england for 3 years huge waste of time.” (Not sure if true or not…but humorous none the less.) Most people said that it cost them 15 pounds to enter on a typical day plus parking. To put this in perspective; 15 pounds is equivalent to about 22 U.S. dollars. Many people viewed this as much to expensive.
Overall; most of the reviewers thought it was an amazing, incomparable experience and said that they would love visit again.
Side note; after reading the reviews for Stonehenge, I searched the Pyramids and the Giza Plateau as well and found reviews like, “This place sucks. Where’s the snack bar? Why don’t they tear it down and build something fun like a roller coaster? Terrible customer service. STAY AWAY!”
It’s disappointing that some people can’t find the beauty and significance in these archaeological and historical sites.