Overlooking the spectacular Bay of Skaill, Skaill House is the finest 17th Century mansion in Orkney. Home of William Graham Watt, 7th Laird of Breckness, who unearthed the World famous neolithic village of Skara Brae in 1850.
Covering thousands of years of history, Skaill House is renowned for its contribution to Orkney’s diverse and exciting past. The house was originally built in 1620 by Bishop George Graham (Bishop of Orkney 1615-1638), and has been added to by successive generations over the centuries. In its 400 year evolution, all 12 Lairds have been related, contributing to the history and collections in the house.
Today, after careful restoration work, the house is open to the public and entry is included in a joint ticket with Skara Brae, which is just a 200m walk away. Skaill House has been accredited by Visit Scotland as a four star visitor attraction. There are many rooms to explore and stories to uncover. Visitors can experience a family home as it was in the 1950s, and discover the items collected by the family since the 17th Century. Neolithic and Iron Age finds, Captain Cooks’s dinner service, the Bishop’s bed , and Stanley Cursiter paintings are a few of the many fascinating items on exhibition here.
Children are very welcome here at Skaill House, and can join in our much loved Viking hunt and children’s quiz, as they explore the rooms of the house. The house abounds with ghost stories to capture their imagination during their visit.