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Kirkwall is the largest town and capital of Orkney, off the coast of northern mainland Scotland. Kirkwall is a port with ferry services to Aberdeen and Lerwick, as well as the principal north islands in the group.
Next to the Cathedral are the ruins of the former Bishop's Palace and Earl's Palace. The town has two museums: Tankerness House Museum, which is contained within one of Scotland's best-preserved sixteenth century town-houses, contains items of local historical interest. The prehistoric, Pictish and Viking collections are of international importance. The other museum is the Orkney Wireless Museum, dealing with the history of radio and recorded sound. Apart from the main historical buildings mentioned above, Kirkwall has many 17th-18th century houses and other structures in the local vernacular style. The 'Kirk' of Kirkwall was not the Cathedral (which was originally at Birsay), but the 11th century church of Saint Olaf of Norway
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