The question should really be, what can’t I do? Unfortunately, we can’t guarantee the weather, so sunbathing might not always be an option. But Skye generally enjoys a warmer climate than mainland Scotland, and if you come properly equipped, then nothing should stop you.
Skye is an outdoor enthusiast’s paradise. Take your pick from:
Climbing, rock climbing and walking. The Cuillins offer world-class mountaineering or a chance for more gentle strolls in the shadow of the great peaks. Elsewhere on the island, the crazy geological formations of the Old Man of Storr offer a prehistorical atmosphere, while the walks from the Longhouse itself can be exhilarating. The nature trails and forest walks from nearby Armadale are also worth a visit.
Deer stalking, shooting and fishing.
Cycling and mountain biking – The Red Cuillin Loop was recently selected as the best singletrack in Britain or try an epic cliff top ride along Idrigall Point on the Duirinish Peninsula in the north of the island.
Golf – it’s not quite the Old Course, but yes you can play golf on the island, at the Isle of Skye Golf Club, between Broadford and Portree. Visitors are welcome.
Sailing, windsurfing and some of the best kayaking in the world. Take an overnight trip with Skyak Adventures, which does tailor-made tours by sea or does white water river excursions.
Scuba diving – Skye has some stunning wreck diving, with good visibility and the chance to get up close and personal with a local whale or basking shark.
Outdoor swimming – plunge into the water near the Longhouse, or jump into the Fairy Pools at Glenbrittle, in the heart of the Cuillin range – outdoor swimming at its very best.
Boat trips – rigid inflatable boats, glass-bottomed boats, sunset cruises, you name it, it’s there for you.
Whale watching and seal trips – between mid-June and the end of September is your best chance to see humpbacks, minkes, basking sharks, bottlenose dolphins and even killer whales. Trips leave from nearby Armadale.
Otter spotting – there is a better chance to see otters on Skye than most other places, or visit the Bright Water Visitor Centre in Kyleakin, where you can learn more about the life of Gavin Maxwell, the naturalist and author of Ring of Bright Water.
Bird watching – the chance to see Golden Eagles, Sea Eagles and Buzzards and a host of other rare birds.
The Clan Donald Centre in nearby Armadale is the perfect place to research both the island’s history, and your own Scottish roots. The Centre has comprehensive genealogy sources, including censuses, parish records, monumental inscriptions and maps. It also holds a unique collection of original rentals and estate documents relating to Skye and North Uist, that can be found nowhere else, and a database of detailed records of over 5000 families in south Skye.
Or join students from around the world learning Gaelic at the Sabhal Mor Ostaig, Scotland’s Gaelic college which is also on Sleat.
Skye also has many museums, including the Museum of Island Life which has seven thatched cottages, recreating life on the island as it was in former times.
Take part in a real Highland ceilidh, with folk music and dancing. Celebrate Highland tradition and culture and sport at the Highland Games in August each year.
Dunvegan, seat of the MacLeods for nearly 800 years, is the oldest inhabited castle in the UK and is open to visitors all year round. It’s just one of many castles on Skye, including Tokavaig’s own ruined Dunsgaith.
Skye has been at the forefront of radically rewriting Scotland’s reputation for food. The island’s restaurants have realised that people will travel to the remotest of places if the quality of the food and the cooking merits it – hence the international success of the Three Chimneys restaurant near Dunvegan in the north of the island, which has been ranked as high as 28 in Restaurant magazine’s definitive list of the world’s 50 best restaurants. At Kinloch Lodge on Sleat, Lady Claire Macdonald continues to attract visitors from all over the world to her cookery demonstrations. She now has a substantial shop at the hotel, selling everything from sauces to saucepans. Or jump on a boat to the Old Forge at Inverie on Knoydart, the remotest pub on the British mainland, which serves fantastic fresh food at reasonable prices.
Talisker is the island’s only single malt distillery, the perfect dram to accompany the sun setting over the Cuillins. For beer drinkers, there’s the award winning range from the Isle of Skye Brewing Company, including Red and Black Cuillin and Blaven. Drink the beer, see the mountains…
Skye Serpentarium, an educational centre in Broadford for kids to get close to many different kinds of snakes and reptiles.
Try your hand at Falconry, with Isle of Skye Falconry in Kensaleyre.
Giant Macaskill Museum – the home of Skye’s giant who emigrated to Canada in the 19th century, where he found celebrity for his size.
Harry Potter train ride – take the ferry from Armadale over to Mallaig and ride the Harry Potter express over the Glenfinnan viaduct to Fort William – one of the world’s great train journeys.
This is just an overview of the many activities Skye has to offer. If you require further information about any of them, or need help making bookings, please do not hestitate to get in touch with us.