One of the places in Scotland, which I find most inspiring is the area around Kilmartin Village with Kilmartin House Museum, in Argyll, on the west coast not too far from the town of Oban. Apparently within a six mile radius of the village there are 350 ancient monuments of which 150 are prehistoric, so it is an exceptionally rich archeological landscape.
There are standing stones, cairns, chambered tombs, a stone circle at Temple Wood as well as all of the rock markings on many of the flat stones in the valley. And it is these prehistoric rock markings which I find so incredibly fascinating! The fact that people went to such amazing lengths to carve these markings on natural flat outcrops of rock, such a long time ago, even though their tools must have been very primitive and it must have taken many many hours of work.
And yet, here is the thing - we have absolutely no idea why these markings were made or what on earth they might mean. There have been many suggestions, from maps to messages, religious symbols to anient graffiti! Anyway I rather like the fact that we don't know, it makes it all the more mysterious and special.
If you are ever in the area I would highly recommend a visit to this wonderful and truly extraordinary area. It has everything which people love about Scotland - mysterious landscapes, druids, spirits, ghostly standing stones, burial cairns and secret messages and stories from the past. And what is more, I can tell you after numerous visits, that the rock carvings photograph best in the rain, when they are wet!!! That's lucky.
Check out my next post to see how this landscape inspired my creativity. Which landscape most inspires you and why?