Armin's World Tour of Scotland

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Facts of the Day:
Date: 26/July/2002
From: Kirkwall
Via: Kirkwall
To: Kirkwall
Miles: none (apart from 2 walked)
Midges: none
Weather: Sunny and warm
Mood: Fantastic

Picture of the view from the breakfast roomAfter all the rain during the previous day it was time to see how the weather was going to develop this day. It didn't rain and the view from the breakfast room at the Royal Oak House was a little bit more promising. It was dry and it started to brighten up. I decided to go to Kirkwall town centre again to see it without the rain and visit some of the sights.Picture of the Earl's PalacePicture of the big hall in the Earl's PalacePicture of the Earl's Palace I started at the Earl's Palace, built by Earl Patrick Stewart around 1606. It is regarded as one of the finest Renaissance buildings in Scotland and the finest in the Northern Isles. Only the brickwork remains, but even that is interesting to view. Examples include the Central Hall (pictured on the right), oriel windows (you can see some of it on the left) and the stone shelves used by the clerk to keep his filing. Patrick Stewart used mainly Picture of the Bishop's Palaceforced labour during the construction of the palace and didn't have much time to enjoy it either: He was imprisoned and later executed for treason (Apparently mainly because he didn't behave very friendly towards his neighbours). Next to the remains of the Earl's Palace are the ruins of the Bishop's Palace. Mainly the walls and a tower, from which you have a quite nice view over St Magnus Cathedral as well as other parts of Kirkwall. St Magnus Cathedral was also my next stop. It was first started in 1137 and has been added to various times over the centuries. A few impressions below:Picture of St Magnus CathedralPicture inside the cathedral

Picture of a grave stonePicture of the sign from the barberInside the cathedral you will also find many old carved grave stones, an example on the left. The skull and crossbones seem to have been a popular decoration, you will find them on quite a lot of stones. Before heading back to the hotel to pick up my car I decided to get a quick haircut. I managed to find one where I didn't have to wait for an appointment and 15 minutes later my hair was nice and short again. Ready to explore other parts of Orkney in the afternoon...

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