The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian

Ring of Brodgar

Stone Circle


Visited 31st October 2012

There’s not much more I can add to what has already been written about what to me is the finest stone circle in Britain. Large enough to be awe inspiring, small enough to still feel intimate, remote enough to feel like you stand amidst the cyclopean remains of an ancient civilisation in the furthest flung corner of these islands, but accessible enough that you can drive right up to it (or roll up in a tour bus!). For me only Callanish comes close to giving this place a run for it’s money.

I’ve seen Brodgar in all weathers, only a few days ago it was snowing, I’ve also been here when it was so misty you could barely see the stones, and for a fantastic sunset, when in a Pythonesque moment a horde of photographers suddenly appeared from nowhere and proceeded to run around the circle with tripods, jostling for position, all of them in their quest for the best angle of the sunset through the stones. It’s no wonder as Brodgar is one of the most photogenic of ancient sites, and tonight, a clear Samhain evening we’ve come up to the circle to try some long exposure shots.

It’s cold, and a low mist clings to the henge ditch around the stones, amplifying the already otherworldly atmosphere. There is no sign of anyone else around, indeed this week on Orkney has been much quieter now we are out of season than our last trip in August, when regular visitors on the tour bus circuit could be guaranteed. We get our photos and as we walk away I look back at the circle, and marvel that something built so long ago can have such an effect on me today.

This is a place everyone who loves megalithic sites should visit, If I could only ever visit one ancient site again this would be it, my ‘Desert Island stone circle’! Brodgar is one of my special places, a truly sublime circle.
Ravenfeather Posted by Ravenfeather
18th November 2012ce

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