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Picnic Noust - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)


A noust is a boat-shaped hollow. It’s an ancient word from Scandinavia. There are nousts made from stone laid by Vikings on …

Kirkwall at dawn - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Kirkwall at dawn

I’ve just woken up in a Viking city. A city which is only part of the UK, and not Norway, because King …

Reading the runes - The Hall of Einar - photograph (c) David Bailey (not the)

Reading the runes

I love the Orkney Museum. Every time I go there I see something else that I’d bypassed on all previous visits. Here’s …

Noust - photograph (c) 2016 David Bailey (not the)


The outrageous thing about several of these nousts, designed to provide protection to boats pulled up onto the shore, is that they …

Pierowall Bay - photograph (c) 2016 David Bailey (not the)

Pierowall Bay

Just a glimpse at Pierowall from the air tells you all you need to know about why the Vikings held Pierowall in …

Viking traces

Viking traces

Traces of the Vikings are everywhere in Orkney; from the runes carved in the Neolithic chambered cairn at Maeshowe to the Viking …

St Magnus

St Magnus

St Magnus Cathedral in Kirkwall is magnificent. It’s origins are in Viking times, when Orkney was ruled by Viking Earls. It’s the …

According to the Orkneyinga Saga, detailing the lives of the Earls of Orkney from the 9th to 12th Centuries, King Harald’s sons were real troublemakers. Gudron Gleam and Halfdan Long-Leg caused lots of trouble in Norway … → 30 August, 2010