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Stromness

  • Skara Brae Visitor Information and Accommodation Guide Stromness

    Skara Brae a celebrated archaeological site on Mainland , near the B9056. It is a 4000- year-old Neolithic village completely buried under sand for nearly two millennia until a violent storm uncovered its existence in 1850. It is a remarkable settlement with much of its original 'furnishings' remaining intact: stone bed frames, shellfish tanks, hearths and primitive furniture all fashioned from stone. Some 10 houses and a workshop comprise this prehistoric village which is easily the best-preserved of its kind in Europe. Skara Brae Visitor Information and Accommodation Guide to assit with finding your vacation property.

    Close by Skara Brae are the Standing Stones of Stenness and the Ring of Brogar, known as the 'Circle of the Sun'. The former are a huge monument of which only four stones now remain upright. The latter is a great ring of stones, of which 27 out of a possible original 60 stand as a witness to the intense lifestyle of the folk who lived here in the ancient past.

    Discovering Skara Brae Visitor Information and Accommodation Guide

    • Skara Brae Latitude 59.048836° N Longitude -3.3417604° E
    • Skara Brae Map
    • Skara Brae Weather
    • Skara Bra Reviews
    • Skara Brae Discussions Forum

    Skara Brae is situated to the west side of the mainland, on road from Birsay to Stromness, an excavated Stone Age village, ranks close Maeshowe as Orkney's major Neolithic treasure. Built between 2500 and 2000 B.C., it consists of ten one-roomed houses in a remarkable state of reservation, its evident domesticity being fascinating. Ironically it was saved from Norse raids depredations because the inhabitants had abandoned it through sand encroachments: in any case the Norsemen would not have considered it worth their attention, as it was the home of humble folk with little worth taking.

    The habits of its people are evident: here are curious stone beds, fireplaces and cupboards, covered passages from one dwelling to another and a paved open court for communal gatherings. Many of the primitive tools and animal bones found at Skarabrae are now in the Scottish National Museum of Antiquities. in Edinburgh.

  • Stromness Visitor Information Guide
    • Stromness Latitude: 58.9662° N Longitude -3.2965° W
    • Stromness Postcode KW16
    • Stromness WOEID 36508
    • Stromness 4 day weather forecast
    • Stromness Map

    Stromness is the second town after Kirkwall, it lies in a sheltered harbour at the west of the mainland and is further protected by the islands of Graemsay and Hoy.

    Although known to Norsemen, it was of little importance until the mid-17th century when it became a trading port for Scotland and the Baltic, and a plaque at Login’s Well (sealed up in 1931) records visits of the Hudson‘s Bay Company’s ships from 1670 to 1891; of Capt, Cook‘s Resolution and Discovery in 1780 and Sir John Franklin’s ships Erebus and Terror ‘on Arctic exploration’ in 1845. It is said that at one time 75 per cent of the Hudson"s Bay employees in Canada were Orcadians, who found favour because of their industrious characteristics and acceptance of lower rates of pay.

    The earliest houses date from about 1716, but Stromness did not come into its own as a town until 1758 when, thanks to the efforts of Alexander Graham, the House of Lords decreed that its merchants need no longer pay taxes to Kirkwall authorities for their own trading.

    The town, however, was early enough to build in the Norse way with paved thoroughfares between facing houses, and many of these, gable ended towards the sea, have their own private jetties. Stromness has an excellent library at Hellihole containing important Orkney books, and the Orkney Natural History Society, founded in 1837, has a large collection in the Stromness museum. The town also boasts Orkney‘s first indoor swimming pool and a picturesque golf course.

    Stromness Situated in the west of Mainland, this is the second largest town of Orkney after Kirkwall. It began its existence in a small way, offering shelter for French and Spanish ships sailing to the New World. In 1670 there were only 13 houses, but during the following century Stromness expanded and prospered as the result of increased trade. When the Hudson's Bay Company began its operations in Canada, the town became its British base for the stocking and preparation of ships before their voyage across the Atlantic. Around 1760 Stromness had also became a supply base for whaling ships bound for the Davis Straits and northern Atlantic and Arctic waters. The piers once provided the Stromness inshore fishermen with space to make and mend their nets, bait lines and shelter their boats from the winter storms.

    The town is the ferry terminal for the passage across the Pentlands Firth from Scrabster in Caithness. The fishing industry provides a steady income for Stromness, with many sites in the town echoing the past relations with the sea. Much of the charm of Stromness lies in the many stone-built piers, stairs and slipways which support the houses on one side of the mile-long narrow main street. In the early part of the 18th century the infamous pirate John Gow lived in Stromness. He left his native town as a young man and returned several years later in a ship under his command. But the pride of the townspeople was dashed when they discovered that Gow and his crew had mutinied and murdered their officers, which made them pirates, with the truth being out, Gow and his companions made off but were shipwrecked on the Calf of Eday.

  • Unstan Cairn Visitors Information and Accommodation Guide Unstan Cairn

    Unstan Cairn Visitors Information and Accommodation Guide for visitors to Orkney. Lying about two miles north east of Stromness, on arrival park in front of the house. The key hangs in a box at the back door. The cairn on the edge of the Loch of Stenness contains an excellent example of a communal chambered tomb typical of Stone Age times.   

    The main chamber is divided by upright slabs into compartments. The pottery found here gave rise to the name Unstan ware which dates from the mid-fourth millennium BC.

    Stones of Stenness with its few remaining stones. Ring of Brodgar. - The Bronze Age stone circle stands in an impressive site on a neck of land between the lochs of Stenness and Harray. Of the original 60 stones 27 remain _ upright. Two entrance causeways interrupt the encircling ditch. Once back onto the main road continue only for a short distance. Park beside Tormiston Mill.

    Discover Unstan Cairn Visitors Information and Accommodation Guide

    • Unstan Cairn Latitude 58.98648 Longitude -3.24915
    • Unstan Cairn Map
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    • Stromness 4 day weather forecast

    Maes Howe - means great mound a Neolithic chambered cairn 26ft high, 115ft in diameter and is encircled by a ditch it is a outstanding piece of achievement and craftsmanship in a age when the only tools were flint and stone. built prior 2700BC the tomb is of a quality to be a tomb of a chieftain or ruling family SKARA BRAE (Mainland) On the west coast of Mainland. Overlooking the Bay of Skaill, clusters a group of Stone Age dwellings. Long protected by sand, the site is well preserved and provides a vivid picture of life in Neolithic times. Period of occupation. - Most of the knowledge of this best preserved of all Northwest European Neolithic villages comes from the excavations of Professor Childe in 1928-9, and smaller but more detailed excavations in 1972-3. Radiocarbon dating shows the two main periods of settlement belong between about 3100 BC and 2500 BC. The inhabitants and their activities. The first inhabitants grew grain and kept cattle, sheep and pigs and fished in the sea.

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