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Orkney – Location of Europe’s most preserved Neolithic settlement
Orkney, sometimes referred to as Orkney Islands, is a group of about 70 islands situated approximately 10 miles north of Caithness, although only 20 are inhabited. The name Orkney is believed to date back to the 1st century BC and people have inhabited the islands for around 8,500 years.
The soils are fertile, which is why agriculture plays an important part in the economy, although wind and marine energy resources are a growing factor. There is a large number of marine and avian wildlife in the area.
Europe’s most preserved Neolithic settlement can be found in the village of Skara Brae, which is believed to have been inhabited from around 3100 BC. The Standing Stones of Stenness are just one of the remains from that period.
The climate is surprisingly mild for its location, averaging 4°C in the winter and 12°C in the summer.
Reasons to visit Orkney
If ancient history interests you, you can not miss visiting The Ring of Brodgar, which is the largest Neolithic standing stone circle in Scotland, consisting of 25 stones (the largest stands 15 feet high) and the circle is more than 340 feet in diameter.
Skara Brae, as previously mentioned, is Europe’s most preserved Neolithic settlement.
You can visit many interesting sites with Orkney Archaeology Day Tours, instead of making individual bookings yourself.
Other ancient ruins and monuments include Maes Howe, the Standing Stones of Stenness, Broch of Gurness, Orkney Fossil and Heritage Centre, Brough of Birsay and many more.
You may also like to visit the Italian Chapel, North Ronaldsay Lighthouse, Hoy Island, Marwick Head RSPB Nature Reserve, Mull Head Nature Reserve, Eday Island, Scapa Flow, The Orkney Museum and Saint Magnus Cathedral.
Entertainment and Dining in Orkney
If night clubs are more important to you, Orkney is perhaps not the ideal spot. However, music and entertainment can be found in pubs and hotels, and the New Phoenix Cinema also offers theatre productions. Popular restaurants include Skerries Bistro in South Ronaldsay, and Helgi’s in Kirkwall.
Accommodation in Orkney
Some of the accommodation includes Guest Houses and B&Bs, Self Catering apartments, Camping Sites and Hotels, such as the reasonably priced Orca Hotel, and Albert Hotel in Kirkwall.