Fingal's Cave has been a source of inspiration for centuries
In Scotland's Inner Hebrides, lies a unique rock formation. Hundreds of geometric columns that once inspired Jules Verne and the Pink Floyd... Welcome to Fingal's Cave. 🏴
This is neither a human construction nor an extraterrestrial island…
In the west of Scotland, this uninhabited island has been a source of fascination for centuries. The Vikings, believing it was formed by gods or giants, named it “Staffa”, otherwise known as “pillar island.” Its cliffs are adorned with thousands of hexagonal columns. On the south side is Fingal’s Cave, which resembles a natural temple. As the ocean rushes inside, it creates strange echoes.
The similarity between these pillars and those of the Giant’s Causeway gave rise to a legend. These two places are said to be the endpoints of an ancient causeway built by giants. The columns from both sites share a similar composition: they are made from volcanic basalt.
The Isle of Staffa was formed around 59 million years ago, when an eruption produced a thick lava flow. By cooling down slowly, it created these hexagonal forms. Later, erosion contributed to the carving out of Fingal’s Cave.
Over the centuries, the cave has inspired the painter William Turner, the writer Jules Vernes and the group Pink Floyd. Now uninhabited, the island is accessible by boat and it's possible to explore it on foot. In spring and at the start of summer, several birds come here to nest, like Atlantic puffins. You can also see black guillemots, cormorants, razorbills and northern fulmars. Since 2001, the island has been classified as a National Nature Reserve.
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