This is a must visit on your way to the Abbey. It looks onto the Sound of Iona and is especially beautiful in spring and early summer time when it is filled with early bulbs and then bluebells. It is also known as St Oran’s graveyard and it’s little Chapel in the graveyard has wonderful acoustics so is great for singing, but it also has a wonderful peaceful feeling inside. There is only candle light inside on the small altar and you are able to say a prayer and light a candle or write prayers to be said in the services run by the Iona Community. Even if you are not religious do not miss being inside what is thought to be the oldest building on Iona. It was re-built in 1957.
The graveyard, which pre-dates the Chapel, is located on the ‘Street of the Dead’, a medieval cobbled road, and is in use to this day for local families; in 1994 the former Labour leader John Smith was interred here. This small graveyard dates back to pre-Christian times and at least 7 early Scottish Kings were buried here from 858AD, including Kenneth MacAlpin. It then became the final resting place for the Clan Chiefs of many clans including MacLeods, MacKinnons and MacLeans. Many of the grave markers from the 8th Century have been moved indoors to the Abbey Infirmary museum to preserve their carvings.