St Magnus Cathedral

Category: Visitor Attractions

This ‘fine minster’ took about 300 years to build, the foundations starting in 1137. It was dedicated to Magnus Erlendsson, Earl of Orkney. He shared the earldom with his cousin, Haakon Paulsson, but jealousy and greed culminated in Magnus being martyred on the island of Egilsay.

Picture Credit : Iain Sarjeant/ VisitScotland
Picture Credit : Iain Sarjeant/ VisitScotland

The building is a fine example of a Romano-Gothic Cathedral. In 2007, the Cathedral was highly commended for the ‘Best Historic Attraction – Cathedral/Abbey’ award from the Icons of Scotland magazine.

Tours of the upper levels of the Cathedral are available on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 11.00 and 14.00. There is a charge for the tours and they must be booked with the Custodian by calling 01856 874894.

Vouchers are now available for the upper level tours which can be used at any time throughout the year. They make an excellent and unusual gift! Vouchers can be purchased from the Custodians at the Cathedral.


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This project was part-financed by the Scottish Government and the European Community Orkney Leader 2007-13 Programme.