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North West Highlands Global Geopark

Geological location

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Source: YouTube

The North West Highlands Global Geopark territory hosts a wide range of rock formations covering two-thirds of the Earth's history. Each rock type inspires its own distinctive landscape of world-class quality and significance. As the "Cradle of Geology" our Global Geopark contains the oldest rocks in Europe (Lewisian Gneiss - 3 billion years old). Thrust structures were first discovered and proved by pioneering Victorian geologists, demonstrating that older rocks could be pushed towards, up and over younger rocks. The Moine Thrust is recognised as the most significant crustal dislocation of its type in North West Europe. Our Global Geopark also contains the earliest evidence of life to be found in Europe: simple-celled algal life (stromatolites) occurring in Torridian Sandstone (1.2 billion years BP). The area exhibits a unique and immediate relationship between landscape and the underlying Geology. "The landscape is the Geology; the Geology is the landscape".

Source: UNESCO

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Scotland
United Kingdom

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