Usually when the expectations are high, there tends to be some disappointment. Not here. Not in the Isle of Skye…
Scotland sat atop my travel wish list for quite some time, and soon after arriving, it far exceeded my every expectation. The dramatic mountain range, the lush greenery, and the rugged coastline cannot compare to any place I’ve visited before. Beyond the beauty, there was something very peaceful and calming about my visit. The tourism footprint was minimal, the locals were friendly, and there was a sense of warmth in a place so raw and vast.
Two friends and I spent six nights in a cabin in Portree and Glencoe. We set out on daily adventures each morning before sunrise, and returned home after dark. The days were long, and our sleeps short, but we witnessed some of the most legendary natural beauty we’d ever seen. Below is a glimpse of our stay in the Isle of Skye.
We started the trip in Edinburgh and drove our way up to Portree, the largest town in Skye (which is still quite small). On the way we visited the Glenfinnan Viaduct and the 13th century Eileen Donna Castle in the Western Highlands. Several traffic stops were made for local sheep and Highland cows on the narrow roadways.
We made it to our cabin later that evening, and set out for sunrise at Brothers Point, the easternmost point of Trotternish. We probably slipped and fell a dozen times trying to make our way out in the rain and mud towards the trail peak in the pitch of dark. It was worth it though, as we were then rewarded with this viewpoint.
The following day we visited a landslip known as Quiraing, and agreed that we just took in the most beautiful sunrise we’d ever seen. The massive green mountains faces stretched as far as the eye could see–I was in complete awe of this place, and fortunately, there was not a soul around us for miles.
Later that evening, we made our way to towards Neist Point. Even though I’d seen the iconic viewpoint numerous times in photos, the scene was even better in reality.
Before heading down to Glencoe, we spent one afternoon hiking the iconic Old Man of Storr. A great climb up to the top, and worth the effort for the views.
The last stop on our trip was Glencoe, arguably Scotland’s most historic and scenic glen (valley). Like most of Skye, Glencoe’s weather is unpredictable so I packed a couple essentials, including my Woolrich Buffalo Check Wool Shirt, to keep warm during our day hikes. We explored a nearby logging town along the way and marveled at the wide open valleys in the area. If only we had more time…