Grand Tour of Scotland: Day 9: 20 August 2019 ~Exploring the Isle of Lewis and Harris #443

Calanais Standing Stones

“The Calanais Standing Stones were erected between 2900 and 2600 BC – before the main circle at Stonehenge in England. Ritual activity at the site may have continued for 2000 years. The area inside the circle was levelled and the site gradually became covered with peat between 1000 and 500 BC.

Peat cutting around the site in 1857 revealed the true height of the stones. It’s possible that there’s plenty more archaeology sealed beneath the peat that covers much of the Western Isles.

There are at least 11 smaller stone circles surrounding Calanais. Some of these date from much later than the central circle, which indicates the complex was in use for several centuries. These are crucial to help with the understanding of the significance of this area, and how the landscape was used by prehistoric people.

The stones are set on a prominent ridge, easily visible from land and sea for miles around.

The Western Isles would have been a lot warmer 5,000 years ago, and food and wildlife were plentiful. The extensive ritual landscape around of which Calanais is a part, speaks of a thriving and sophisticated society.

The form of the site and the artefacts found during excavation also show that this community was part of a wider culture which involved the construction of earthen enclosures known as henges and impressive circles of timber or stone.

~ Historic Environment Scotland

Calanais Standing Stones, Outer Hebrides, Isle of Lewis and Harris, Scotland

Information about photo:

  • Location: Calanais Standing Stones and surroundings, Outer Hebrides, Isle of Lewis and Harris, Scotland, United Kingdom
  • Date Taken: 2019-08-20
  • Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II
  • Lens: Canon Zoom Lens EF-S 18-200 mm F/3-5.6 IS
  • Exposure Program: Manual
  • Image Quality: JPEG
  • F-Stop: f/5.6
  • Exposure Time: 1/800 sec
  • ISO Speed: ISO-500
  • Focal Length: 50 mm
  • Metering Mode: Center Weighted Average
  • Handheld
  • Post Processing: Adobe Photoshop CS6
  • Photographer: Coreen Kuhn

Thank you very much for taking the time to join me on my travels through Scotland one Photo at a time. I hope you enjoyed it just as much as I did.

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