Located off the western coast of Scotland, in the Atlantic Ocean, the Isle of Skye is one of 79 rough, ready and unique islands in the Inner Hebrides. The Isle of Skye, also known as Misty Isle, due to the frequent appearance of rain and fog there, is the largest and some say, most magical island of the archipelago.
Day 1: A dip to start your trip
Inverness to Glenbrittle
The journey from Inverness to your first stop, the Fairy Pools, will take around three and a half hours (127 miles). When you arrive, climb up the cascading waterfalls and don’t miss the opportunity to strip off for a dunk in the crystal blue pools. If you arrive late due to stops along the way or are leaving HQ later than planned, you can always wait and have a refreshing dip in the pools in the morning.
If you haven’t stopped for dinner or fancy a bite to eat, Seamas’ Bar is a fantastic place to stop for a taste of the best food and drink Skye has to offer. Serving seafood straight from the boat to the plate, it is not one to miss for seafood lovers. If you’re not a big fish fan, they have a large selection of hearty meals to choose from including Haggis Bonbons which are to die for! Boasting an impressive 400+ malt whisky's, it is the ideal stop for anyone looking to find their perfect whisky.
Pitch up for the night at Glenbrittle campsite, located at the foot of the iconic Cuillin Hills — prices start at £11 an adult, per night on a first come first serve basis. This campsite is open from April to mid-October.
Day 2: Mystical and manmade landscapes
Glenbrittle to Uig Bay
Start your day early with a steaming hot cup of award-winning coffee and some breakfast at Glenbrittle Cafe, attached to the campsite. The perfect way to start your first busy day exploring!
When you’re done, hop up the coast to check out Talisker Bay. Just a short half an hour drive (13.3 miles) you can stroll along the sandy shores and enjoy a taste of the quiet island life. Just 15 minutes (4.8 miles) from the bay is Talisker Distillery… every whiskey lovers dream! For £48 per adult you will get an expert led whiskey tasting and can sample all types of whiskey while learning about the distillery’s origin and one of Scotland’s most popular exports.*
The most impressive castle on the island is Dunvegan Castle. It sits on the rocky shores of Loch Dunvegan, which is a 21.2 mile drive from the distillery. Step back in time to the thirteenth century when this impressive structure was built. Entry to the castle and gardens costs £14. If you’re peckish while you’re here, check out Blas Cafe and Deli or Jann’s Cakes.
Fairy Glen is the next stop, which is 30 miles away, so if your fuel is running low, pop to the Atholl Filling Station before you head off again. The Fairy Glen was named after its unusual and seemingly unexplainable landscape, which can only have been made by fairies. However, its curious mossy mounds and distinctive hills were created by landslides and glaciers over thousands of years.
Then rest up at Uig Bay Campsite, which costs £7.50 per night.
3. Breathtaking landscapes and dinosaur footprints
Uig Bay to Portree
Today you’ll see all of Trotternish’s best bits. If you’re a sunrise addict, a glorious spot is to head to the top of the Quiraing, an 18-minute drive from Uig Bay Campsite. But it’s an astonishing place all hours of the day. The best hike starts at the Quiraing car park and heads towards Flodigarry. You can either do a longer two-hour circular route or just walk the first section of the path and back.
Next, at An Corran Beach, which is just a 10-minute (3.9 miles) drive away. Here, make sure you scour the ground to spot ancient dinosaur footprints — there are 17 in total. After that, there are a few quick, must-see, stops all within around a 30-minute drive. Mealt Falls is a powerful waterfall that plunges 55-meters down the striking cliff edge, Kilt Rock. If you carry on driving south, you’ll soon get to The Storr where you can see the distinctive, ridged pinnacle rising from the ground — The Old Man of Storr. It’s the perfect hiking and photo spot.
From The Storr, head to Portree — if you’ve got time, don’t miss the Bride’s Veil Waterfall along the way. The town of Portree offers a host of independent shops and restaurants. Just Hooked will fulfil your fresh-fish needs. Skye Batiks is full of handmade Celtic clothing and homeware. If you’re in need of camping supplies, pop to Inside Out. Also, there are a couple of petrol stations here to fill up if you need to.
Finish your day by pitching up at Portree Campsite. Located just outside Portree, you can enjoy uninterrupted views of The Cuillins mountain range for the evening. Prices start at £16.
4. Mountains and keepsakes
Portree to Inverness
For your final day on the Isle of Skye, if you’re feeling up to it, why not bag a Munro? The most popular mountains to climb here are Bruach na Frithe and Blà Bheinn.
Or if you’re after something a little less tiring on the legs, take a boat across from Elgol to Loch Coruisk for a 6km stroll around the Loch, where you’ll be surrounded by stunning mountain peaks.
A great place to stop for some grub around this area is the Deli Gasta; their signature gourmet sandwiches are outstanding.
If you’re looking to purchase some gifts or mementoes, visit Skyelark or Love From Skye before you leave the island. The latter sells handmade Celtic jewellery and Skylark sells pictures, pottery, scents, soaps and more.
Wave goodbye and head back over Skye Bridge to Inverness, which will take around two hours. I would recommend staying in a campsite around 30 minutes from Inverness so that you are able to drop your vehicle back with us in time for our 11am drop-off. I would highly recommend Fortrose Bay Campsite or Rosemarkie Caravan Site. Both based on the Moray Firth, you are a stones-throw away from Chanonry Point which is the perfect place to spot dolphins. Is there better way to end your Scottish Highlands adventure?!