Broch of Gurness

This is without doubt the best broch so far. And as an historical site, superior to Skara Brae and the Ring of Brodgar.

I know Skara Brae is Neolithic and this broch is Iron Age, a mere 2,000 years old but I must admit I was disappointed by commercialisation of the older site.

The Broch of Gurness, which could have been as tall as 12 metres, is surrounded by the remains of a Pictish settlement, built 500 years after the broch at a time when it had probably began to decay but was still the main focus of the site.

Three defensive ditches surround the broch and village. Later, after both fell out of use and before the Vikings adopted Christianity, the site became used for Viking burials.

The photo shows the main entrance way through the village to the broch, access to which was through an unroofed gatehouse and controlled by a door. The whole effect seems to have been built to create an impression.

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