Trip Planner:   Europe  /  UK  /  Scotland  /  Orkney Islands  /  Mainland  /  Kirkwall  /  Religious Sites  /  Saint Magnus Cathedral
Saint Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall
(4.7/5 based on 1,000+ reviews on the web)
Visit Saint Magnus Cathedral to see a fine example of Romanesque architecture. The Viking, Earl Rognvald, founded the Cathedral in 1137 in honor of his uncle St Magnus. From the outside of the "Light of the North," as the Cathedral is known, admire the sandstone construction. Centuries of weathering have given the site a charm rarely found at other cathedrals. Inside, check out the Stone Manson Marks from the Viking ages, the medieval dungeon, and the ball from the Royal Oak ship sunk by the Germans during World War II. The cathedral still hosts weekly services, weddings, and funerals, so confirm its availability to visitors before you come. For an especially memorable experience, find out when the choir's scheduled to perform. Put Saint Magnus Cathedral at the forefront of your travel plans using our Kirkwall vacation generator.
Create a full Kirkwall itinerary
map

Plan your trip to Kirkwall

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Plans in Kirkwall by other users

7 days in Scotland BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM May, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 60 days in Scotland BY A USER FROM CANADA June, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: June, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 10 days in Scotland BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, culture, historic sites, museums, slow & easy, hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, culture, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 10 days in Scotland BY A USER FROM BELGIUM April, fast-paced, hidden gems PREFERENCES: April ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Fast-paced 20 days in United Kingdom BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, slow & easy, hidden gems PREFERENCES: September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 13 days in Scotland BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, relaxing, historic sites, museums, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, relaxing, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 29 days in United States, Kirkwall & Brisbane Region BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA January, popular PREFERENCES: January ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 11 days in Scotland BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM September, culture, relaxing, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: September, culture, relaxing, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 10 days in United Kingdom BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 7 days in United Kingdom BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: September, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 10 days in Scotland BY A USER FROM KUWAIT July, kids, outdoors, romantic, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, kids, outdoors, romantic ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 10 days in Scotland BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA July, culture, outdoors, romantic, beaches, hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, culture, outdoors, romantic, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium
View more plans
Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • the silence within. You can stop thinking about Petrarch's Tomb of Orkney Mackay Brown that after a lifetime of feeling for his Orkney and many problems with alcoholism, desideró this burial among other great. And you can even stop to observe the great book where I marked the names of over 800 sailors from the ship Royal Oak Captain Priest siluró in 1939 and which still lies on the bottom of Scapa Flow. Every day we turn a page from that book to read all the names. I mean try to cross the threshold and you will remember the experience.
    View original
  • We try to go to a service in St Magnus on each annual visit to Kirkwall. It is a beautiful historic building with amazing medieval memorials and lovely stained glass windows. The Sunday service is pea...  more »
  • This beautiful old cathedral dates back to the 1100's. The appearance from outside is arresting with bands of different coloured stone. The cathedral was built at a time when Orkney was under the cont...  more »
Google
  • My friend and I were up at a funeral in this lovely Cathedral and I had the privilege of reading one of my friends poems it was a wonderful experience and a magnificent Cathedral. The minister June gave an excellent sermon and it was clear she knew all about the lady that had passed . The cathedral it's self, is just overwhelming.
  • Originally built in the 1100's by a Viking Earl, the front door and surrounding columns appear to still be the originals, and you can see how the stone has eroded over the years. Fascinating. It's also very impressive on the inside. No entry fee, so definitely worth a visit -- before or after a visit to the Earl's and Bishop's Palace (just around the corner).
  • Really lovely cathedral in the heart of Kirkwall. Original tombstones from the medieval era are preserved and translated inside.
  • The upper level & belfry tour is highly recommended. Terrific.
  • Nice to have a look, you won't need more than 15 minutes or so to see it all.