By the eleventh century the site was abandoned, but was remembered again in the early twelfth century when it became the parish church of St Colman. In the later middle ages it experienced an upsurge of activity with fishermen and metalsmiths settling beside an enlarged community church. When the Reformation arrived at Portmahomack about 1600, the village moved to the harbour and the old church of St Colman remained on its own, acting for another four hundred years as a weathervane of local society and its beliefs.
Rediscovered by archaeologists in the 1980s, from 1994 to 2007 the site at Portmahomack saw one of the largest research excavations to have taken place in Scotland. Opened by Charles, Prince of Wales, the museum in the church of St Colman’s displays these discoveries and is visited bv people from all over the world.