Newage New Age



Stonehenge Summer Solstice 2006

Fun places to be at the Summer Solstice

1. Stonehenge
- in the magnificent circle with 30,000 others - celebrating the midsummer sunrise!
2. Avebury - in amongst the towering stones or standing on the surrounding bank for a panoramic view.
3. Ireland - Newgrange is a brilliant place to be, but you need to win a ticket to gain entry to this one, but you can still join others at standing stones around Drombeg, Beara and Kenmare to watch how they align with the sun on the 21st.
4. Orkney, Scotland
- week long festival of music, literature and drama at the St Magnus Festival - watch the midsummer sunrise from the amazing Ring of Brodgar.
5. Sweden - 'Midsommar' is celebrated traditionally - often wearing traditional folk costumes - around the Majstång, a tall maypole covered with flowers, and fun solstice parties with lots of vodka are held in Gotaland and the Oland islands.
6. Finland - 'Juhannus', Finland's Flag Day is also celebrated on the same day, so Finnish flags are displayed all around the country from Midsummer's Eve to the evening of the following day. Bonfires (kokko) are lit and maypoles are danced around - originating from old rituals of fertility, cleansing and the banishing of evil spirits. Homes are decorated with flowers and birch branches.
7. Reykjavik, Iceland - many gather to celebrate the midnight sun on the longest day of the year. The solstice comes after a month of endless sunshine, during which the sun never sets. Feasting and partying continues through the early hours of the midsummer morning.
8. Denmark - St. John's Eve is celebrated the night before the Summer Solstice - bonfires on the beach, by lakes and in parks with picnics and songs are traditional.
9. Poland - 'Noc Swietojanska', St. John's Night on midsummer's day it is traditional for the men to dress up as pirates, and for the girls to throw Solstice wreaths made of wild flowers into the Baltic Sea, lakes or rivers.
10. Latvia - 'Jani' is an important national holiday, celebrated with bonfires, drinking beer, singing and jumping over the bonfire wearing wreaths made of flowers for girls and oak leaves for the men. It is also traditional to attach small oak branches with leaves to cars.
At the North Pole, and everywhere north of the Arctic circle (66'30" degrees north latitude) the Summer Solstice means 24 hours of daylight - a good reason to party!
21st June 2006

The celebrations happened around sunrise at 04.58am.

It was one of the wettest solstices ever, but most brave souls weathered the downpour from 2am to 3am, and were rewarded with the sun breaking through the cloud to light up Stonehenge and all of us (rain-soaked but happy) waiting to celebrate the beginning of the longest day.

The atmosphere and the company was brilliant as ever!
English Heritage parking=
10pm and the walk from the car park begins -
the 'ambient' lighting doesn't seem very...ambient !
Stonehenge standing stone
Standing stone becomes good place to wait
for the sunrise
Stonehenge sarsens
saving energy for the dawn celebration
mexican food stall
hot food
health food stall
healthy food
solstice kids fun
kids enjoy the fun too
To Summer

O thou who passest thro' our valleys in
Thy strength, curb thy fierce steeds, allay the heat
That flames from their large nostrils! thou, O Summer,
Oft pitched'st here thy goldent tent, and oft
Beneath our oaks hast slept, while we beheld
With joy thy ruddy limbs and flourishing hair.

Beneath our thickest shades we oft have heard
Thy voice, when noon upon his fervid car
Rode o'er the deep of heaven; beside our springs
Sit down, and in our mossy valleys, on
Some bank beside a river clear, throw thy
Silk draperies off, and rush into the stream:
Our valleys love the Summer in his pride.

Our bards are fam'd who strike the silver wire:
Our youth are bolder than the southern swains:
Our maidens fairer in the sprightly dance:
We lack not songs, nor instruments of joy,
Nor echoes sweet, nor waters clear as heaven,
Nor laurel wreaths against the sultry heat.

by William Blake

solstice entertainment
You dance, I'll bongo!
ribbon twirler
I'll remember how to do it in a minute...
Hare Krishna
Hare Krishna draw a crowd with their bongo playing
There was some great entertainment this year - the Hare Krishna
gathered a big crowd who enthusiastically joined in with their happy drumming, clapping, chanting and dancing - weaving their way like a conga dance through the people who were sat on the ground.

All over the site there were jugglers, people twirling ribbons, glowing
lights,etc. The inner circle of Stonehenge resounded with the drumming and the calls of joy as the sky began to change colour. Slowly a band of orange became visible as the solstice sun broke through the bank of cloud and rose on the mighty monument...hurray!

Stonehenge summer solstice 2006
The mighty stones didn't provide much
protection from the rain
cool reveller
good hair gel can last all night !
stone circle Stonehenge
Hanging on for the solstice dawn
inner circle
getting close to the stones
Stonehenge inner circle solstice 2006
full circle
solstice musicians
resting fiddler and cling-film man
coming from behind the stone!
solstice party
solstice 2006 party
solstice  2006 dancing
the dancing begins
solstice fun
I can't do this if you make me laugh...
Heel stone
Heel stone
solstice rain
solstice mist descends
solstice entertainer
Hey, don't go I've got the hang of it now...
King Arthur
King Arthur and his loyal Arthurian warband
Loyal Arthurian warband
time for some Druid fluid
Stonehenge solstice party
the partying continues through the night
summer solstice 2006
the entertainment carries on - despite heavy rain
solstice party hat
solstice party hat
here comes the rain
the rain falls mainly on the plain - Salisbury that is
keep on dancing
all night party
solstice raver
solstice party animal
solstice Druid
Druid meets PC
circle energy
time to take in the atmosphere
solstice 2006 loos
when you've gotta go've gotta go
Stonehenge circle
the circle starts to fill up
midsummer night vigil
settling in for the solstice night vigil
around Stonehenge
the grass is a bit damp
Stonehenge seats
sitting the solstice out in comfort
solstice blankets on the ground
not long now...
seeking solstice
it's been a long night
Stonehenge stone hugging
stone hugging
Stonehenge stone shelter
shelter under the lintels
Stonehenge security
night watch
ambient lighting
time to turn off the 'ambient' lights...
solstice 2006 sky
the sky is changing colour

Stonehenge summer solstice 2006 pic
Summer solstice Stonehenge 2006

Recommended Solstice books and music

Stonehenge celebration
Stonehenge: Celebration and Subversion - Andy Worthington £14.95

Fascinating story of Stonehenge solstice celebrations - covers the conflicts and more recent issues like the proposed Stonehenge tunnel and investigates the draw of this 'living temple'.

Stonehenge solstice

Solstice at Stonehenge :Hawkwind
  - £14.00

This 20th Anniversary edition DVD released on June 21st records when Hawkwind played Stonehenge in 1984, includes 'Stonehenge Decoded' and 'Dawn' and footage of the magical solstice dawn amongst the stones.