The Magic Roundabout in Swindon.

Magic Roundabout in England
Magic Roundabout in Swindon

The Magic Roundabout is a roundabout located in Swindon, England, not far from County Ground, home of Swindon Town FC. It was designated as Britain’s fourth scariest intersection by the Britannia Rescue. Indeed, it is one the most scenic junction in the world.

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.

You can situate the road on the map below:

Enlarge the map

Some 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 crossroads was built in 1972 and was designed by Frank Blackmore of the British Transport and Road Research Laboratory. It was named after the famous TV show The Magic Roundabout.

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 as long as 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 south you can drive the Zig Zag Hill road.

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 this crazy intersection 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 curiosity that is worth the detour. So if you are driving the M4 you can definitely try this by yourself.

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

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