Easter Aquorthies Recumbent Stone Circle

Purple flowers at Easter Aquorthies

Easter Aquorthies, also known as East Aquorthies, is sometimes described as a ‘show circle’ and recommended as a good first circle to visit. This is due to its near perfect condition and position: all stones are present and upright; the grass always seem to have been manicured to a close shave, and the views of the surrounding countryside are magnificent. It’s also very clearly signposted from the nearby town of Inverurie, making it easy to find and then park in its small car park.

Blue skies over a stone circle

The Mither Tap of Bennachie is apparent wherever you walk in and around the circle, looming majestic and large over your shoulder.

cows at Easter Aquorthies

The recumbent stone is unusual in that it has extra supporting stones on the inner side. I wonder what led to this arrangement. Did it fall and crush someone in Neolithic or Bronze Age times, causing new health and safety measures to be put in place? It is on a slope, so maybe it was just hard to make secure. I hope no one got crushed!

recumbent at Easter Aquorthies stone circle

The name is thought to derive from Gaelic and means either ‘field of prayer’ or ‘field of the stone pillar’. Most of the stones are granite but one, below, is red jasper.

The red jasper stone at Easter Aquorthies stone circle

There are numerous tales of people finding it hard to exit Easter Aquorthies stone circle. Some describe walking away as being like trying to wade through treacle and report feeling as if the circle wants to keep them there. On the day I visited, I really didn’t want to leave. I would rather have stayed sitting in the sun with my back up against one of the recumbent flankers, staring out over Bennachie. I knew the next circle on my list to visit was going to be contrastingly tricky to find… and it was… but that’s a post for another day.

straight line of stones

A stone circle quote from The Mermaid and the Bear, though the pictured stones are those of Aikey Brae:

Stone circle quote from The Mermaid and the Bear

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58 Replies to “Easter Aquorthies Recumbent Stone Circle”

  1. Fascinating. I wonder what would have happened if you HAD stayed there? I wasn’t aware of this circle but I’ve visited others, a lot in Wales, and one at Kilmartin, Argyll, which seemed so manicured it had no atmosphere left at all.

  2. Hi Ailish, I have never been to Scotland but my Great Grandfather and probably his ancestors, was born there (Ayr). Thanks for sharing the gorgeous scenic views! Have a wonderful weekend! Thanks for visiting and following my nature blog. I appreciate it.

  3. It is interesting to read this post. Throughout my life I have really only been aware of Stonehenge as far as stone circles go, so I was quite shocked to be taken to see the Stones of Stenness and the Ring of Brodgar on my recent trip to Orkney. Being an inquisitive person I googled both these sites when I got home and I was introduced to a whole host of stone circles throughout Britain! I hope you visit many more as I am keen to see more interesting photos, especially in places I probably shan’t get the chance to visit πŸ™‚

  4. Very good post. Highly informative for travellers who want to visit these stone circles in Scotland. Nicely written and keep up the good work.

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