The Skye Guide is an independent and personal view of the Isle of Skye. It is written mainly with visitors to the island in mind, but I hope it is useful to residents and potential residents as well.
I love Skye, and have chosen to make my home on the island, so my views are not dispassionate - but neither are they uncritical. Places are included in the guide because I like them - and because I think you might too. If something is not included, it may be because I would not recommend it to you, but it may be simply that I have not yet experienced it. I am happy with that ambiguity...
Ullinish Country Lodge, Struan
Ullinish Lodge is a fine old building in Bracadale, on the west coast of Skye. Dr Samuel Johnson stayed there on his famous Tour of the Hebrides with James Boswell in 1773, and one of the guest rooms bears his name. I'm sure it would be a nice place to stay, but we live too close by to justify trying it out. The restaurant I can recommend highly though. It is one of the great eating experiences on Skye.
Red Hills - Beinn na Caillich horseshoe
This is a quite excellent walk that takes in three summits with first rate views, a steep scree descent and some wonderful, easy ridge walking - all in the space of 8km and less than 5 hours. There are two Beinns na Caillich on Skye. This is the one that towers 732m above Broadford and is the first major hill that visitors see in front of them if they are driving up the island from the Skye Bridge. The name means the mountain of the old woman. She is a tough old woman, with a steep and boulder strewn face, but she has her good points too. This walk takes us to her summit and then onwards to Beinn Dearg Mhor and Beinn Dearg Beag, before returning to the start point with no retracing of steps whatsoever.
Flying Fortress crash site
On the moors of Trotternish, just below the steep east face of Beinn Edra, lie the remains of a US Air Force heavy bomber - a Boeing B-17G Flying Fortress. It is a pretty bleak and remote location, and the walk in from Marishader is pathless and often boggy. Nonetheless, it is a fascinating place to visit if you are at all interested in such things.
Trotternish - The Quiraing
The Quiraing is awesome. It is supernatural. It is a place of wonder and amazement. It is outstanding by any measure. If you are fit enough to walk the narrow path and scramble up and down the steep slopes – you must do it. To visit Skye without experiencing the Quiraing seems unthinkable.
Go on a bright and clear day for views of the Outer Hebrides and the Scottish mainland, framed by the pinnacles, cliffs and great buttresses. Go on a wet and windy day to feel your spine tingle as the clouds and mist swirl around you in this unreal and menacing landscape. Whatever the weather, you’ll not forget the experience.
Although categorised here under 'natural wonders', this place is actually supernatural. It is also not well known - there are no roadsigns to point the way. Luckily, it isn't too difficult to find, just a short way off the main A87 south of Uig.
Leave the main road at NG397633, just by the Uig Hotel, climbing the hill on the wee road signed to Sheadar and Balnaknock. The fairies live about a mile up here. You'll certainly know when you have reached their special place.