Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Day Three - Ancient Sites

A brilliant day! Except for a short shower mid afternoon, and about 5 minutes of drizzle early evening, it was sunny!

Unstan Chambered Cairn

Underwhelming, but's a cairn.  

Stones of Stenness
Step back in time over 5000 years at what may be the earliest henge monument in the British Isles. The enormous Stones of Stenness are all that remains of a great stone circle on an ancient ceremonial site.
There was a guided tour at 10 a.m.

Barnhouse Neolithic Village
Didn't walk down to see it. 
Ring of Brodgar
The Ring of Brodgar Stone Circle and Henge is an enormous ceremonial site dating back to the 3rd millennium BC.

Ness of Brodgar (covered over until the archaeological dig begins again in July)

Skara Brae
Long before Stonehenge or even the Egyptian pyramids were built, Skara Brae was a thriving village. Step back 5,000 years in time to explore the best-preserved Neolithic settlement in Western Europe.
First uncovered by a storm in 1850, Skara Brae remains a place of discovery today. Visit a replica Neolithic house to see how its full interior might have looked. Then follow the path that overlooks the ancient buildings, imagining what life was like for the farmers, hunters and fishermen who lived here. The prehistoric houses still contain stone ‘dressers’ and box-beds.



Stromness is lovely!  Great to wander around.  Stopped in at the Mariners Museum. 

Brough of Birsay

Low tide this evening is 7:28pm. So I had from 5:28 to 9:28 pm to walk across to the island and not get stuck. People were impatiently waiting for the tide to recede and some didn't wait...taking off shoes and wading across. I stayed for nearly 1 1/2 hours. Gorgeous! Sadly, didn't see any puffins.

Reach this very special tidal island by causeway to explore Pictish, Norse and medieval remains. Brooches, rings and dress pins found on the Brough of Birsay suggest that it was a Pictish power centre.
The Norse settled the island 200 years later, in the 9th century, but may have lived peacefully alongside the Picts. It’s still possible to make out the remnants of Norse houses, barns and even a sauna. Later, a small church and monastery were built on Birsay.

Weather today: Gorgeous!  Warm and sunny.  Showers for about half an hour mid afternoon.  Drizzle for about 5 minutes just before crossing to the Brough of Birsay. Showers in evening as soon as I got back to hotel.  No complaints!

Sunrise/sunset:  4:36/21:41 (9:41pm)

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