Magic Roundabout in Swindon, a unique intersection

Magic Roundabout in England
Magic Roundabout in Swindon

The Magic Roundabout is a roundabout located in Swindon, England, not far from County Ground. According to Britannia Rescue, The Magic Roundabout in Swindon has been ranked as the fourth-most frightening intersection in all of Britain. Also, it is one of the most aesthetically pleasing junctions in the world, seen from the above.

Where is the Magic Roundabout located?

This curious intersection is situated in Swindon, in the county of Wiltshire, in South West England in the United Kingdom. This unusual roundabout has five smaller roundabouts arranged in a circle, making it one of the most complex and challenging intersections in the country.

You can situate the road on the map below:

Enlarge the map

Details about the Magic Roundabout

Swindon’s Magic Roundabout is a very complex intersection, surely one of the weirdest in the world. In fact, there is one roundabout that has five smaller roundabouts.

The traffic circulating around the small inner roundabout is counterclockwise, while it is clockwise (the one by default in England) in the five micro roundabouts and in the outer loop.

Magic Roundabout road sign
Road sign of the Magic Roundabout

The Magic Roundabout, the unique crossroads, was constructed in 1972 and designed by Frank Blackmore a traffic engineer of the British Transport and Road Research Laboratory. Its name is inspired by the famous TV show of the same name.

The overall configuration has hardly changed for over 30 years. But at its inauguration, the micro roundabouts were not permanently marked on the ground, and could be reconfigured in case the layout was not “good enough”. During this period, a policeman was placed at each gyratory in order to control the drivers.

This crazy intersection is located in Swindon. This town is situated on the M4 highway that connects London to Bristol and then to Cardiff. Also, if you drive to the north, you can drive the Winnats Pass.

A preview of the drive:

It can be quite hard to understand the functioning of this intersection. That’s why it can be easier with this YouTube video :

Here, is also a video of the drive :

Is the Swindon Magic Roundabout open?

The road is open all year round. We advise you to be very careful if you want to drive this intersection. Indeed, it can be confusing.

However, even if the road seems dangerous, there were “only” 14 serious accidents and approximately a hundred recorded in 25 years. In fact, it is less than the average on such busy junctions.

Swindon’s Magic Roundabout is a unique and fascinating attraction that is well worth the detour. Therefore, if you’re traveling along the M4, make sure to stop, so you can see this famous intersection for yourself. It’s a chance to witness something truly unique.

Pictures sources: Mark Winter / By Alby, CC BY-SA 2.0,

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