Càrn Liath is an Iron Age broch on the eastern shore of the Scottish Highlands. The broch has an external diameter of around 19 metres and an internal diameter of around 10 metres. The entrance passage is on the east side and is over 4 metres long. The entrance has elaborate door checks and a bar-hole to control access to the interior. On the right-hand side of the entrance passage is a small guard cell. The surrounding enclosure contains the ruins of additional stone buildings.

The broch was first excavated in the 19th century by the Duke of Sutherland, and was initially thought to be a burial cairn. Finds included pottery, flint chips, stone hammers, mortars and pestles, querns, whorls, shale rings, long-handled bone combs, a whale bone club, a silver fibula, steatite cups and an iron blade.

The site was excavated again in 1986. This showed that the site was occupied in the Bronze Age, before the broch was built. A Bronze Age cist burial with a food vessel was discovered. The foundations of many outbuildings were found in the enclosure surrounding the broch. Although many were clearly from a later period, some may have been contemporary with the broch.

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A9, Highland, United Kingdom
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Founded: 300 BC
Category: Prehistoric and archaeological sites in United Kingdom

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4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Maggie Nelson (2 years ago)
Brilliant bit of our history
Alexandria Stephenson (2 years ago)
A lovely example of Scottish archaeology
jackiejon kayl (3 years ago)
Beautiful pebble beach there too. Great
Karen Bailey (3 years ago)
Stopped on our way to John O'Groats - purely on a whim having seen the brown sign. But it was actually really interesting! Good context boards to explain what was happening. Lovely views out to sea too!
Tomas Johansson (3 years ago)
A 2000 year old defense building that was typical for Scotland. Not much left but a nice stop if you pass by. One of many nice old ruins that I passed by during my roadtrip, in England, Wales and Scotland back in 2001, that I took time to visit and enjoyed exploring. Many still in good condition and maintained, both small once and other massive.
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