Callanish Standing Stones


The standing stones of Callanish, a prehistoric ritual landscape
©2022 Gazetteer for Scotland

The standing stones of Callanish, a prehistoric ritual landscape

The Standing Stones of Callanish on the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides are amongst the best preserved prehistoric remains in the United Kingdom. Erected about 4000-5000 years ago and comprising obelisks of Lewisian gneiss, overall the monument takes cruciform shape. It comprises some 53 stones, the centre of which forms a circle of 13 stones. A further 12 megalithic sites in the neighbourhood of East Loch Roag have been excavated following the cutting of peat. The Callanish Visitor Centre, which opened in 1995, tells the 'Story of the Stones'. The centre was first proposed in 1984, following the purchase of the Callanish Farm by the University of Edinburgh as a research centre. Developed in close collaboration with the local community, the centre includes a shop and restaurant and was opened by former University Rector and Gaelic rock singer, Donnie Munro (b.1953).

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