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Isle of Skye

Skye is the largest of the Inner Hebrides, home to the most dramatic mountains on the islands.

Size: 639 square miles
Population: 10,000
Ferry: bridge, and CalMac ferry from Mallaig to Armadale on the Sleat peninsula
Airport: Broadford
Accommodation: lots
Island Website: www.isleofskye.com
Maps: OS Explorer 407 - Dunvegan buy
OS Explorer 408 - Trotternish & The Storr buy
OS Explorer 409 - Raasay, Rona & Scalpay buy
OS Explorer 410 - Portree & Bracadale buy
OS Explorer 411 - Cuillin Hills buy
OS Explorer 412 - Sleat buy

Skye is connected to mainland Scotland by the free Skye Bridge, which opened in 1995. As well as giving the island a road connection, this means you can drive across Skye to Uig for the shortest ferry crossing to the Outer Hebrides.

The island is famous for two geographical features - the Cuillin Hills and the Trotternish Landslip. The Cuillins are among Britain's most difficult mountains to climb, characterised by rocks which flake away dangerously. An easy walk nearby goes to the Fairy Pools.

Further north on the Trotternish ridge the lengthy landslip has created a number of interesting landforms which attract visitors, walkers and photographers. The Storr and the Old Man of Storr are just north of the island's capital town Portree. The old man is the largest of a number of enormous rock pinnacles - it's about an hour's walk to visit, on a good track and with a free car park by the roadside. A little further north along the ridge is the Quiraing ("kih-rang") where on a back road a parking area at the top of the pass leads to a path through a dramatic broken landscape.

Other popular stops near here are KIlt Rock waterfall and the Fairy Glen, a minor valley near the village of Uig where the landscape is jumbled on a small scale, allowing the visitor to ascend what look like castles and towers in a few seconds. Dunvegan Castle is also popular, as is Neist Point where a rocky peninsula points out to sea.

Skye is easy to visit due to the bridge, and is only around 2 hours drive from Fort William, but once on Skye the scale is deceptive and distances are longer than you may expect from being on an island.

Minor islands off Skye are Raasay, Rona and Scalpay.


Size: 24 square miles
Population: 160
Ferry: CalMac from Sconser. £3.70 return for foot passenger. £12.20 per car.
There's a ferry almost hourly. The ferry docks near the main settlement, Inverarish, so a day on foot is possible.
Airport: none.
Accommodation: Hostel, B&B, self-cater, and camping.
Island Website: www.raasay.com
Map: OS Explorer 409 - Raasay, Rona & Scalpay buy


Size: square miles
Airport: none.
Island Website:
Map: OS Explorer 409 - Raasay, Rona & Scalpay buy


Size: square miles
Airport: none.
Island Website:
Map: OS Explorer 409 - Raasay, Rona & Scalpay buy

Posted by Andyf 09:23 Archived in Scotland Tagged skye isle_of_skye storr broadford uig raasay portree rona scalpay cuillin trotternish fairy_glen fairy_pools quiriang

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