Isle of Skye

Isle of Skye vacations take you to some of the most beautiful scenery in all of Scotland. This is the largest and most northerly of the Inner Hebrides Islands that lie off the northwest cost of mainland and are considered part of the Scottish Highlands. As such, these islands are the counterparts to the Orkney Islands, located off the northeast coast of the mainland. Portree is the capital of Isle of Skye Scotland. It is a picturesque small town that can easily be explored on foot. There are a number of Isle of Skye hotels in Portree. Most are fairly small and modest bed and breakfast establishments. One of the best in town is the Bosville, located right in town on Bosville Terrace, with lovely rooms, two fine restaurants, and a traditional bar pub.

The Isle of Skye Scotland is connected to the Scottish mainland by a vehicle bridge that does not charge a toll, and there are two train stations. You can get here on regular bus routes from Fort William, Glasgow, and Inverness. Fort William is located near the end of the navigable Caledonian Canal that reaches all the way to Inverness, so it is also possible to arrive here by boat. During the summer, there are also ferries connecting the Isle of Skye with the mainland and other Inner and Outer Hebrides Islands.

The island is made up of a number of peninsulas that each boast their own character and beauty. There are scenic lighthouses and charming little villages, stunning rock formations, and breathtaking views from numerous hiking trails and footpaths. Isle of Skye Scotland is even home to beautiful Scottish lochs where fishing and boating are popular. On the shore of Loch Harport is the Talisker Distillery where you can enjoy tours and a wee taste of the country's national drink—whiskey. Most every village, no matter how small, has one or more traditional pubs, where you can dine on authentic pub fare and sometimes book a room for the night.

Other things to see on the Isle of Skye include a couple of the country's castles. Dunvegan Castle and Gardens is the oldest continuously inhabited castle in the country. It has been the home of the Clan MacLeod since the 13th century, and provides a wonderful experience for visitors. Inside are priceless paintings, tapestries, and furnishings, and the grounds are beautiful. You can enjoy a meal in the castle's café and take a boat trip to view the large seal colony, and perhaps see puffins and other unique birdlife along the way. Another of the island's castles is also one of its museums—the Clan Donald Centre at Armadale Castle. If music is your love, one of Scotland's summer music festivals is held here during June.

There are plenty of Isle of Skye hotels and other accommodations outside of Portree. Nonetheless, this is an extremely popular destination from about Easter until the end of September. If you plan to travel at this time, make your arrangements as far in advance as possible to ensure obtaining the lodging of your choice. In the budget range, you will find a handful of hostels (Portree, Broadford, Glenbrittle, Uig, and Raasay) or the dormitories of the Gaelic College in Armadale. There are also camping sites and self-catering vacations rentals.

On the other end of the accommodation scale, you can stay in Isle of Skye hotels like the Sligachan Hotel set at the end of the loch of the same name. This is a historic property dating to the early 19th century, and it is set in a mountainous area very popular with climbers. Or you might want to try the Duntulm Castle Hotel, a beautiful coastal estate near the ruins of the castle. This was a shooting estate built during the 19th century, and is very popular with anglers.

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