MAESHOWE & THE RING OF BRODGAR
Sightseen, Culture & local gems, Less than 1 hour walking
Discovering the traces left by ancient prehistoric civilisations amidst the evocative landscapes on the Orkney Islands, which reveal their Neolithic heart with important prehistoric remains.
- North Sea Coast
- Heart of Neolithic Orkney
- Ring of Brodgar
- Standing Stones of Stennes (from the bus)
- We leave the port for a panoramic coach trip along the North Sea coast to the Heart of Neolithic Orkney, nominated as a Unesco World Heritage site in 1999, that includes a series of Neolithic monuments found in this area.
- Our first visit is to the Ring of Brodgar, the third largest monolithic stone circle in the British Isles. Probably an important burial place and religious site, archaeological studies suggest that it was built before the more famous circle of Stonehenge. Only 27 stones remain today of what is thought to have been a perfect circle of more than 60 stones that are over 4,500 years old.
- A few miles away, we pass by the Standing Stones of Stennes. Dating back more than 5,000 years, this archaeological treasure is one of the oldest stone circles in Great Britain.
- It is time to make our way to Maeshowe, a Neolithic chambered tomb covered by a carpet of grass. At more than 5,000 years old, it is considered one of the finest prehistoric works of architecture. Inside is the fascinating runic graffiti, left in the 12th century by the Viking warriors who used it as a shelter. With 30 inscriptions, Maeshowe boasts the largest collection in Europe.
- At the end of our visit we return to the ship.
Good to know
- Space is limited, so please reserve early.
- Photography is not permitted inside Maeshowe.
- Entrance passage to Maeshowe is 0.91 m high and 11 m long, requiring visitors to stoop or crawl into the central chamber. Once inside, they can stand at full height. Visit not appropriate for guests who are uneasy in small spaces.