Stone Circles in Dumfries and Galloway

On our way back from Kircudbright a few weekends ago, we checked out a couple of unusual stone circles. As we commented at the time, once you’re looking for them you realise that they are everywhere!

First, not far from Carsluith was Cairn Holy Chambered Cairn - a stone tomb, thought to be for a Scottish king and dating from the 4th millennium BC. The setting, overlooking Wigtown Bay is quite similar to that of Birkrigg Stone Circle which overlooks Morecambe Bay about 80 miles to the south east. The stones themselves, however, are very different.

The second example is a couple of miles north of Dumfries. Much more similar to the stone circles of Cumbria, the Twelve Apostles stone circle comprises stones arranged in a large circle, in a field.

Today there are only 11 stones. All twelve survived from the original construction between 5,000 and 3,500 years ago but one was then removed some time in the nineteenth century.

The circle is Scotland’s largest at 86 metres diameter, but unfortunately this means that it doesn’t look much from ground level because the stones are so far apart from each other. From above the flattened circle can be clearly made out.