Stones Journeys: Pictish Symbol Stone Sites in Scotland

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This one-day journey starts in Arbroath and visits four sites.

Sites to be Visited

St. Vigeans Pictish and Medieval Stones Museum
Aberlemno Pictish Symbol Stones
The Maiden Stone
Picardy Symbol Stone

Journey to the Pictish Symbol Stone Sites

The four sites listed here may be visited in one day as the entire route is only 101 miles (162.5 km).

Our journey departs from the town of Arbroath, which lies on the North Sea some 16 miles east of Dundee and 45 miles south of Aberdeen. There is evidence of Iron Age settlement, but its history as a town began with the founding of Arbroath Abbey in 1178. It is located at NGR NO641412.

The first site in this journey is a visit to the St. Vigeans Pictish and Medieval Stones Museum, located in the Angus village of St. Vigeans, which is 1.6 miles (2.6 km) from the center of Arbroath and located at NGR NO63834294. The museum houses an outstanding collection of Pictish carved stones. The museum displays 38 carved stones which formerly stood upon the old church mound. Among the stones on display is the 9th-century Drostan Stone, a flat rectangular slab with a cross carved on one side and Pictish symbols on the other, and also bearing a Pictish inscription in Latin Script. It is suggested that you call ahead to see if the museum is open. Detailed Driving Directions Map

Our second Pictish site is 13.3 miles (21.4 km) away and contains the outstanding and spectacular Aberlemno Pictish Stones found in and around the small village of Aberlemno. Four are on view. One stands in the kirkyard of Aberlemno Kirk. The three others stand, each a short distance from the next, slightly set back from the south side of the main road. NGR NO5214255528. . Detailed Driving Directions Map

Our third site is the solitary Maiden Stone, located a long 58.9 miles (94.8 km) away, but well worth the drive. It is located at NGR NO5214255528. It is a roughly 10 foot tall Pictish symbol stone carved in red granite from the 9th century A.D. with relief carvings of a cross on one side and symbols on the other. The cross is surmounted by a man between two fish monsters, while there is a large disc below the cross. On the reverse the slab bears a variety of Pictish symbols: a centaur-like figure, a notched-rectangle and Z-rod (chariot), a beast, and a mirror and double-sided comb. Detailed Driving Directions Map

Our final site is the Picardy Stone, another solitary stone set in a field 9.9 miles (12.9 km) away, which dates from the 6th or 7th Century A.D. It is believed to be a memorial pillar set up by local farmers. Still in its original position, it is located at NGR NJ609302, and it commands a view of the hillfort of Dunnideer on the hill beyond.The Picardy Stone has the following symbols carved into it: the double disc and Z-rod; the serpent and Z-rod; and the mirror. Detailed Driving Directions Map

After viewing the Picardy Stone, we drive to the village of Inverurie, our last stop that is located at the confluence of the rivers Ury and Don, about 16 miles (26 km) north-west of Aberdeen. NGR NJ7721. Detailed Driving Directions Map

Visitors Information

Visitors information for Pictish Symbol Stones may be found at Wikipedia Pictish Stone website. General tourist information may be found at the 7 Days in the East of Scotland website.


As of the date of this posting, road directions and conditions are correct. Please check local road conditions, however, for possible changes prior to venturing forth on this journey. A helpful resource for road changes and possible trip interruptions if you are travelling in England, Scotland, Wales, and Ireland is the AA-UK Route Planner. Another map source that this website uses and that may be useful to you on your journeys is Streetmap UK.

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