Isle of Skye: Why it belongs on your Scotland itinerary
Isle of Skye, does scenery get better than this?
I’ve often being asked to name the absolute number one thing to see in Scotland. An impossible question of course, but one that gets the mind and the pulse racing. There’s Glen Coe, an area of simply sublime beauty. Or Edinburgh, one of the most evocative cities in the world. There’s Loch Lomond, nature at its most…… I’d be here all day and you can see where this is going. Yes, without doubt, the Isle of Skye is one of the most amazingly beautiful parts of my country.
More than anything Skye is an outdoor paradise. It’s a hillwalkers haven with options in abundance for varying ability levels. The Quiraing epitomises landscape beauty. The crumbling Old Man of Storr is one of Scotland’s most iconic images. The Cuillin Hills are as dramatic a range of peaks as I have ever experienced and present some of the best and most challenging hikes in Britain. For those that love mountains and animals in equal measure check out my post on the the best Skye wildlife boat tours.
The appeal does not end there though. The Isle of Skye is home to Talisker Whisky, a 200 foot waterfall in the form of Kilt Rock and the remarkable Fairy Pools that belong in another kingdom. History lovers can explore Bonnie Prince Charlie’s Cave where he hid while on the run following the Jacobite defeat at Culloden. The Hebrides of Scotland also deliver some of the finest sunsets you are ever likely to witness. Having the freedom of your own car on Skye can make all the difference for moments like this.
Are there any drawbacks to Skye? Only that the secret is out and that it does fill up in the summer months. Even then though, aside from Portree, it is easy to escape and find secluded spots. The key message of my itineraries for Skye is not to rush it. The smash and grab approach to tourism is not suited to the Scottish Highlands and while it may be tempting to see it all in one trip, it just can’t be done. Take at least a full weekend in Skye to appreciate its wonders, preferably longer.
Planning on visiting Skye? Want to make sure your itinerary includes the best highlights? See my detailed guide that includes key information on the best bits on the Isle of Skye for just £7.