A Hidden Gem as Amazing as Stonehenge
02.05.2018 - 12.05.2018
Not far from Inverness, just a few miles from the Culloden Battlefield are the 4000 year-old Claver Cairns, one of my favorite sites in Scotland. The Cairns (rocks) are formations that are reminiscent of Stonehenge. Arranged in circles, they are thought by some to be a burial ground. Others think they were a calendar of sorts for farming. Whatever they were used for, they are mystical. Being there made me happy that there are still mysteries in the world that no one quite understands. Who put these circles of stacked rocks and huge stones in place? Why are they there? Surrounded by trees, with green pastures as far as the eye can see, hills loom in the distance and when you stand in the middle of one of the circles, you feel as though it must have felt centuries ago. There is nothing of modernity here (except a sign directing you to see the Highland Cows a short distance away) and I was struck by the hours, days, weeks, it took to stack these Cairns into mysterious circles that were carefully arranged to let sunlight stream through on the solstice.
For fans of Diana Gabaldon’s popular novel Outlander and the TV series of the same name, Clava Cairns has become a bucket list destination. It's been suggested that Outlander’s fictitious stone circle, Craigh na Dun was inspired by the site. This is where the main character falls through time and meets her Scottish love, Jamie. The show has become so popular, there are now Outlander bus tours that take you to all the places where the show has filmed.