Family days out in Orkney

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  • The Fossil and Heritage Centre, Burray, Orkney
    The Fossil and Heritage Centre, Burray, Orkney
  • A child on the beach at Newark Bay, Mainland, Orkney
    A child on the beach at Newark Bay, Mainland, Orkney
  • Getting creative at The Pier Arts Centre, Stromness, Orkney
    The Pier Arts Centre, Stromness, Orkney
  • Two children explore rockpools looking for the local inhabitants, Orkney
    Two children explore rockpools looking for the local inhabitants, Orkney
  • Girl going into the Tomb of the Eagles, South Ronaldsay
    Tomb of the Eagles, South Ronaldsay

A place full of wonder and mystery, Orkney lends itself perfectly to a fun-filled family holiday. From season to season, there is plenty to discover on this stretch of over 70 islands and skerries.

There are lots of activities for the whole family to enjoy across Orkney. You can follow the trails to ancient Viking sites which chronicle the history of the islands or cross the causeway to the Brough of Birsay at low tide. Follow the Orkney Craft Trail and visit artists in their workshops.

Why not head to a secluded beach for an afternoon’s picnic and seal spotting? Here the kids can explore rock pools to find minnows, crabs, anemones and admire the many wildlife species and seabirds that populate the islands.

There are also plenty of indoor adventures to be had if it’s a rainy day or you just feel like having some fun indoors. At the many museums and heritage centres you can uncover the enthralling past of these ancient islands, including the Corrigall and Kirbuster farm museums. Go for a swim in one of the islands' six swimming pools or enjoy the cinema, sports centre, new pool and climbing wall and at the Pickaquoy Centre. Or if you fancy getting creative, head to the Pier Arts Centre, which includes a great programme children's events.

Enjoy family-friendly events and festivals such as the Orkney International Science Festival. The programme for 2013 includes subjects such as Arctic exploration, the last of the Great Auks and stories and pictures from several of the islands. You can also get advice on how to teach quantum physics to your dog!

With so much to explore, discover and enjoy, there’s never a dull moment in Orkney.

Plan fun family days out in Orkney using the listings.

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41 results, currently showing 1 to 10
  1. Vat of Kirbister

    Type

    Historic Sites

    Gradings

    Stronsay

    The Vat of Kirbister was formed when the roof of a large sea cave collapsed.

  2. Fursbreck Pottery

    Type

    Arts & Crafts

    Gradings

    Harray

    Watch skilled potter Andrew Appleby at work in his studio as creates beautiful ceramic inspired by the unique landscape and heritage of Orkney.

  3. Bishop's & Earl's Palaces

    Type

    Monuments & Ruins

    Gradings

    • 4 Historic Attraction
    4 Historic Attraction

    Kirkwall

    These palaces near St Magnus Cathedral are regarded as two of the finest examples of architecture in Scotland and highlight Orkney’s strong Norse and ecclesiastical links....

  4. Gradings

    Burray

    See an intriguing collection of rare fossils from Orkney and around the world and learn more about the heritage of the Orkney Isles.

  5. Gradings

    • 3 Museum
    3 Museum

    Orkney

    The museum tells the story of the naval anchorage in the First and Second World Wars.

  6. Gradings

    • 4 Visitor Attraction
    4 Visitor Attraction

    Westray

    This small museum located in the village of Pierowall provides a fascinating insight into the natural and human history of the isle of Westray.

  7. Broch of Gurness

    Type

    Monuments & Ruins

    Gradings

    • 4 Historic Attraction
    4 Historic Attraction

    Orkney

    The Broch of Gurness is one of the most outstanding surviving examples of an Iron Age settlement that is unique to northern Scotland.

  8. Earl's Palace

    Type

    Historic Sites

    Gradings

    Birsay

    The palace was built in the late 16th century by 'Black Patie' - the unpopular Earl Robert Stewart.

  9. Ness of Brodgar

    Type

    Monuments & Ruins

    Gradings

    Stenness

    The Ness of Brodgar is the excavation of a massive Neolithic walled enclosure that contains numerous well preserved monumental stone buildings on an unparalleled scale –best known from its media coverage as Orkney’s Neolithic Cathedral’.

  10. Gradings

    Kirkwall

    Orkney’s wartime history is strongly represented in a museum collection that spans the development of wireless in Orkney from the beginning of the 20th century to the present day.

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