The walk to the lighthouse on Neist Point, the western extremity of Skye, is a popular one. There are good views across Moonen Bay, along the cliffs of the Skye coastline and out across the Little Minch to the Outer Hebrides. It’s also a great place to spot seals, minke whales and basking sharks.
Neist Point Lighthouse
Designed and built by one of the "Lighthouse Stevensons" - in this case David A Stevenson, the light and its associated dwellings cost £4,350 when they were built in 1909. The station was converted to automatic operation in 1990 and the lightkeepers were withdrawn. The foghorn at the front left corner is no longer in use.
The walk is on a tarmacadamed path for most of the way, and there are no difficulties with navigation. That said, desk-bound or less mobile visitors should note that the first few hundred metres of the walk are very steeply downhill. That means your lungs and/or legs may feel some pain on the last part of the return trip. There is a handrail to help though.
Camas Ban - a beach at Neist Point
The public road ends at NG132478, within a mile of the lighthouse. At the start of the path you will see the top station of an aerial cableway. Note the wire ropes that run over the roof and are secured to bolts in the rock. If you visit on a windy day, you’ll soon understand why. It’s very exposed out here. The cableway is still in use from time to time to ferry heavy items up or down the slope. It’s not for passengers though – so you’ve got to walk!
On the way to the lighthouse, head to your right both before and after the big lump of An t-Aigeach (the stallion) to get a view of its sheer north face. The path ends at the lighthouse, which is not open to the public. Your choice is either to head straight back from here, or to find your own way further out to the end of the point. If you choose the latter, beware that the ground is surprisingly soft in places. It's easiest to head south from just before the lighthouse, and then to follow the rocky coastline. You'll find some very small, but pretty, sandy coves down there too. Despite the popularity of Neist, it always offers a good choice of quiet spots to sit and watch the world.
Make a life changing decision here. It’s as good a place as any.