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Mousa Broch


<b>Mousa Broch</b>Posted by theloniousImage © thelonious
Nearest Town:Lerwick (18km N)
OS Ref (GB):   HU457237 / Sheet: 4
Latitude:59° 59' 45.37" N
Longitude:   1° 10' 50.46" W

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30/06/2023 - A boat trip to Mousa. 9 years since my last visit, 25 years for my dad. We were both happy to be back. I'd rushed it a bit last time, nervous about missing the boat back (didn't need to be as you get plenty of time). It was great to get a chance to visit again, enjoyed it more. My dad made it to the broch and back too, which was pretty ace as his knees ain't great nowadays. On the way back to the boat we were lucky to hear Storm petrels calling from the old stone walls nearby which was proper magic. Top day out with my dad, I'd not seen him for ages as we don't live near to each other. Just great that he made the trip up. Mousa is a special place. thelonious Posted by thelonious
9th July 2023ce

21/09/2014 - Sunday afternoon boat trip to Mousa. The boat left Sandsayre pier (small visitor centre and toilets) for the short and luckily calm crossing to Mousa. You get about two and a half hours on the island which is plenty as there is a nice signposted walk of about one hour, leaving plenty of time to explore the broch. We walked clockwise so got to the broch towards the end of the loop. I liked this as I had a better idea of the time left before the boat back to the Mainland. After seeing so many brochs in ruined states, seeing Mousa broch up close in all it's glory is quite something. A bit like a ancient cooling tower to be honest from the back. Looking up from inside and climbing the steps to the top was great. I liked the stones used, a million different colours and shades. thelonious Posted by thelonious
28th September 2014ce
Edited 28th September 2014ce

Non visit!

This was the only site I had on my 3 week itinerary that I failed to visit.

Due to the times of the sailings I didn’t have chance for a daytime visit so I thought I would go on one of the shorter evening sailings.

We arrived at booking centre only to discover that the evening sailings only operate on Wednesdays and Saturdays! (My fault for not checking in advance)

I therefore had no option but to settle for a very far of view.
On a clear day like today the Broch is actually quite easy to see on the Mousa. Shoreline.

It certainly gives as idea of how it must have looked along the coast when all the Brochs were in use – very impressive sight!

I hope to return to the wonderful Shetland Islands one day – this will be at the top of my ‘hit list’!
Posted by CARL
23rd July 2012ce

In the summer months you can visit Mousa at night, and not only experience this site in the atmospheric 'summer dim', but also see the amazing sight of the Storm Petrels who nest there flitting back to their nests after a day out at sea. Highly recommended. Posted by Ubik
18th June 2007ce

Mousa Broch is the finest example of a 2000 year old Iron Age tower or broch anywhere. It stands 13.3 metres high and dominates the landscape of the small island of Mousa just off the Shetland mainland.

Accessibility is only by boat and it is thought that the only reason it still stands so proud today is because it would have proved too difficult for past generations to sail over and steal the stone.
notjamesbond Posted by notjamesbond
1st June 2003ce


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We find from Egil's Saga, ch43, that about AD900 'Bjorn Hairld of Aurland in Sogn, who had fled from the fiords with Thora Hladhond, sister of Thorer Herse, was wrecked near Moseyjarborg' (Mousa) and took shelter there until his ship was repaired, and he could continue his voyage to Iceland. Again in 1154, Erlend Junge, a chief from Hjaltland, fled with Earl Harald's mother, Margaret, widow of Madadh of Atholl, and shut himself up in Mousa, where he stood a siege (p342 in the Orkneyinga Saga). Neither of these notices, however, necessarily implies that the broch was at these dates owned or occupied by any one, but rather the reverse.

Cribbed from
IV.—The Brocks or "Pictish Towers" of Cinn-Trolla, Carn-Liath,and
Craig-Carril, in Sutherland, with Notes on other Northern Brochs,

By the Rev. J. Maxwell Joass (c1871)

online here
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
14th June 2006ce
Edited 14th June 2006ce


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The Mousa Boat

Mousa boat trip website with sailing information and times.
thelonious Posted by thelonious
28th September 2014ce