Attractions Orkney sightseeing guides

Guide to Orkney
Guide to Orkney

Interesting places and facts about the city Orkney in Great Britain

Orkney Islands are one of the most exotic places in the world. They include Mainland island with two cities called Stromness and Kirkwall, as well as a group of smaller islands. Orkney became a part of Scotland only in 1468. Until then it was an independent county.

About Orkney Islands

53 islands from seventy included in Orkney archipelago are uninhabited. However, in ancient times, Orkney Islands were the real center of European civilization. You can easily check this fact, having examined the local historical heritage. Orkney is the main concentration of Neolithic attractions in Europe. Orkney Islands are located in the north of Scotland. To get there, you have to catch a plane or a ferry. There are flights to Kirkwall from several towns in Scotland. However, the fastest and most easy way to get to Orkney (about 3 hours) is by ferry.

The most interesting excursions

Several monuments of Neolithic in Orkney are part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Knap of Howar settlement (Papa Westray island) consists of two houses. It is pretty well-preserved and was built even earlier than Skara Brae. A chambered cairn (artificial construction made in the form of a cone of stones) located on the Mainland Island. Used as a burial mound. Megalithic (built of huge stone blocks) tomb called Dwarfie Stane (Hoy Island, glaciated valley).
The Mine Howe rock-built chamber. Built over two thousand years BC. Lamb-Hill, a church made of ships. Built from the wrecked ships stranded on the shore. There is a lighthouse next to the church, it is recognized as the highest one in the United Kingdom. St. Magnus Cathedral in Kirkwall founded in the 12th century.

Places to visit with children

Take your kids to «St Magnus» festival where you can spend an unforgettable time together as a family. There are many entertainment shows carried out for children: amazing puppet shows or exciting circus animals' performances. The most interesting place for children is the "Island of sunken ships," where they can try themselves as pirates, while adults are engaged in diving and exploring the bottom of the Skapa Flow harbor.
Most of Orkney area is occupied by rich pastures, that is why large herds of cows and sheeps can be seen here. Meat of the local animals is considered the best in Scotland thanks to a perfect environment. The famous meat pies and sausages are made of this meat.
So called "Tea restaurants" offer travelers a take-out food and just delicious meals. Here you can try the local bread called «bannock», as well as a rhubarb jam. Be sure to try the specific local dish: Fish and Fries. You can also sample the local cakes. Orkney cheese is among the most important food of the islands' inhabitants. It is not necessary to travel far in order to assess the local cuisine. Almost every hotel serves it for foreign tourists.

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