Wildflowers in the Heart of Neolithic Orkney

August is the perfect month for enjoying some late summer colour in Orkney.

And there are few better spots to experience the grand finale than in the Heart of Neolithic Orkney, where the Ring of Brodgar provides a fitting centrepiece for nature’s great garden.

Summers can fade quickly in Orkney. The seemingly endless days are getting rapidly shorter and the first autumnal gales are probably just a few weeks away. Winter may not be without its beauty here, but for now, it’s time to soak up the last of summer’s colour while we can.

The monoliths of Brodgar stand among great plumps of heather. A couple of unusually dry spells through the summer meant an early flowering this year. Yet still they continue to put on a fine show, great swathes of purple all around the stone circle.

But to fully appreciate the wildflowers at Brodgar, it’s best to step away from the main path that follows its outer circumference. Follow the routes that take you on a wider orbit of the stones, taking care to stick to the obvious tracks that gently wind their way around the site.

Ling, clover and meadowsweet are seen in abundance here at this time of year, as well as a multitude of grasses, great swathes heavy-headed with seed.

Looking back to the Ring from here, through a floral foreground, you see the stones in a slightly different light, caught between the sky and the loch behind.

It’s a fleeting glimpse, before a fading to seed, to be carried on autumn gales in search of new beginnings.

Find out more about Orkney's flora and fauna, and plan your trip to the Ring of Brodgar and Orkney's UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Orkney.com Newsletter

Sign up to our newsletter

Sign up to receive our newsletter and get the latest updates from our beautiful, vibrant islands.
Sign Up Now