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Five thousand years ago this northerly huddle of more than 70 low-lying islands was one of Europe’s most important religious centres, but today the Orkneys are a sleepy outcrop of the United Kingdom; the flat, green landscape devoted to farming, tourism and twitching.

The largest town on the largest island (called, imaginatively, Mainland) is Kirkwall, and it is such a cosmopolitan place that one of the first things I saw was a sign warning: ‘Watch out, otters crossing.’ It was a short drive to our accommodation, East Heddle, a lovingly converted croft with slate floors heated by a ground-source pump, with fancy kilims and antique farmhouse furniture.

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In Wessex, some of the most famous examples include West Kennet Long Barrow and Waylands Smithy, in Orkney the most famous examples are probably Maeshowe and Midhowe.In Orkney these monuments are known as chambered cairns because they are built of dry-lined and corbelled stone and used take the form of a main chamber with subsidiary cells off.Agricultural Society, Orkney „ ,, West Mainland Board of Trade Surveyors, Inspec- tors of Lights, Crew Spaces, &c.. Alfred Ernest Albert, Duke of Edinburgh, born August 6, 1844 ; mar- ried Jan. "Weel," he naively replied, "what for no 'P I thocht I was needn't." A thrilling adventure on these wild cliffs once befell a you.th, named Nathan Scoray, the sou of a small crofter, who had gone egg-gathering' almost from his childhood, and who knew the rocks quite as well as the gulls and cormorants. Commissioners of Supply, Clergy, Piars' Prices, Income Tax Commissioners Inland Eevenue, Inspectors of Poor, Justices of the Peace, Longhope Shipping List, Mails, Arrival and Departure of Orkney Eoad Trustees, Piera and Harbours Commissioners, Police Committee, Population of Orkney, Postmasters in Orkney, Post, Money Order, and Telegraph Offices,. 23, 1874, to the Grand Duchess Marie Alexandrovna of Eussia. He was noted for his dai-ing, and it was only when he wanted to explore the most dangerous parts of the cliff's where the shelves were narrowest, that he took the precaution of having a rojje round his waist. GRAMMAR OF THE LATIN LANGUAGE, for Mi Idle and Higher Class Sohools. D., Post 8vo, cloth, EXERCISES IN" LATIN PROSE COMPOSITION. The terrain underfoot will usually be on paths or hill trails, which may still be muddy or rough in places.

The daily walks are mainly glen and coastal hikes, with some ascents of low level hills, up to around 1,500 feet / 450m high.

Naturally, any special dietary requirements can be catered for and the restaurant is fully licensed offering a selection of Orkney malts and ales.

There is no single person supplement charged to solo travellers, however, you will be required to share a room with another person of the same sex.

The cairns in Orkney can be classified as either being of Maeshowe type, or as stalled cairns (like Midhowe), but most are hybrids, having characteristics from both tomb types.

There are dozens of Neolithic tombs or cairns in Orkney.

This would have once comprised 60 twinned standing stones — today only 27 tall and slender slabs remain — set between two lochs, the rolling glacial landscape rising up on all sides in a magical 360-degree panorama.