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All in an Orkney day

Updated: Aug 14, 2023

We had a surprise visit by the daughter of an old friend – from so long ago, in fact, that the charming PhD student, Paula, who arrived (all six feet of her) had not even existed when I last saw her father.

This, of course, was a good excuse for a day out in Orkney. Since we only had a day with her, it had to be to stunning sites. I took photos only at Yesnaby, although we went to plenty of other places, one of the best of which was to lounge on beds of soft heather at a place called Scarradale, from where there are glorious views over Scapa Flow if one looks one way, and Stromness and the Atlantic if one looks the other.

So here are some fresh pics of Yesnaby, as it was yesterday, on a day of very benign weather.


The tourist never go far from the end of the road, which terminates on the clifftops where the the gun emplacements used to be. It's only a few steps from there to some stunning views.

We walked the extra mile, however, to sights even more stunning, but I was quite grateful for this gaggle as they provided the sense of the scale of the sort of cliffs we are talking about.

The landscape is very scalloped, and it took us for ever to reach our destination as the three young people seemed determined to go to the edge of each promontory, thus considerably increasing the distance we had to walk. I got Paula to pose here (with behind her the one promontory to the end of which I was not forced to walk).

A glance back at our starting point

A glance forward, with destination still not reached. The island in the background is Hoy and once just see the tip of the Old Man of Hoy sticking out beyond its tip.

En-route explorations

To, at last – me with aching ankles – our destination: the Castle of Yesnaby, or, as I call it, the 'younger man of Hoy'...

... where we sat and gazed at it in the perfect light

(This guy wouldn't sit still long enough)



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