Isle of Skye is known for its breathtakingly picturesque scenery, but can become overrun with tourists during peak tourist season. However, you can easily escape these crowds by heading off-island.
Travel during the off-season for maximum efficiency – you’ll experience less traffic on the roads, less crowded hiking trails, and potentially even accommodations just for yourself!
Skye is home to some of Scotland’s most iconic castles. These range from romantic ruins in spectacular settings to clan homes containing priceless artifacts from Scotland’s past.
Dunscaith Castle plays an important role in Celtic myth. Once home to Scathach, a legendary warrior maiden who was said to teach combat to Irish hero Cu Chulainn before leading many battles herself. Unfortunately, however, ownership has changed several times over time with clan Macleod relocating their seat elsewhere on Duntulm Island.
Dunscaith Castle may not be one of Scotland’s more well-known castles, but it still deserves your consideration as it boasts an interesting tale about its construction as well as an impressive collection of paintings and heirlooms that would make a lovely stopover for an afternoon stroll in its gardens.
Eilean Donan may be more famous, but this castle still offers plenty of charm and history on Skye. Built originally by Macleods but later taken over by Donalds as strongholds during 17th and 18th century Jacobite uprisings (Outlander fans will recognize these events!), this structure played an active role during those turbulent times before it suffered heavy damages during Jacobite uprisings (Outlander fans know all about them!).
Caisteal Maol may require some effort, but it’s certainly worth your while to get there. Being one of Skye’s least visited castles means that this beautiful ruin may just be all yours! Additionally, its outrageous history includes once being home to Norwegian Princess Saucy Mary – she demanded a toll be paid from anyone sailing past via Kyleakin straight!
Skye is best-known for its whimsical folklore, towering sea cliffs and crumbling castles; but this picturesque island also has another draw: one of the world’s best places for discovering dinosaur footprints! Jurassic Period creatures left behind their impressions all across Staffin Beach and various points along Trotternish peninsula; however a set of 50 tracks were discovered recently at Rubha nam Brathairean (Brothers’ Point) as an eye-catcher.
Although scientists have long known about dinosaur footprints on an island, only recently have they come to grasp their significance. Their discovery revealed a vibrant ecosystem that existed some 170 million years ago and even included evidence of an entirely new type of dinosaur species for which no previous records exist.
These trackways are believed to have been left by a Stegosaurus dinosaur, an enormous creature which would have weighed more than six tonnes and stood almost 30ft high. What is striking about these footprints is their incredible preservation; so much so, that future generations could use them as teaching resources on dinosaurs.
There were not only prints of Stegosaurus dinosaurs present at this site; there were also footprints thought to belong to carnivorous theropods – these being the ancestors of Tyrannosaurus Rex! Additionally, evidence was discovered for ornithopods which were bipedal dinosaurs more focused on plant consumption than their carnivorous relatives.
Discovering this site furthers experts’ understanding of dinosaur life during the mid-Jurasic period – a time of rapid evolutionary change when fossils were rare – by providing invaluable new information. “This remarkable site and an important addition to our understanding of what was happening at this time in Scotland,” stated Professor Stephen Brusatte from University of Edinburgh’s Palaeontology and Evolution Department as reported by Inverse.
The Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights), is one of Scotland’s most spectacular natural phenomena – however, they can often be hard to spot due to solar activity, cloud cover and time of year when visiting. Your chance of witnessing such an astounding show depends on a range of factors such as solar activity, cloud cover and weather patterns when visiting Scotland.
Shetland Islands, situated closer to the Arctic Circle than London is to New York, are one of the best spots for witnessing this magical sight. Glendale and Rubha Hunish on Skye as well as Quiraing and Duntulm Castle offer superb opportunities.
Following @aurora_alerts or @aurorawatchuk on Twitter is an ideal way to be informed when there’s the potential of seeing the Northern Lights, as well as checking weather forecasts before planning your journey. To increase your odds of seeing them more often and reduce cloud coverage significantly during your visit, try traveling between March, April, September and October; outside peak season when cloud cover chances tend to be reduced significantly.
Sutherland and Caithness in Scotland’s Highland regions provide ideal locations for searching out the Northern Lights, particularly Durness, Tongue and Melvich and Castletown/John O’Groats at Scotland’s far northern tip. In Fife Coast (Crail to St Andrews), look out for remote bays/beaches between Crail/Out Head; this half circle can provide more opportunities than expected as our eyes have evolved to better detect green wavelengths in low light situations. Although any hue could exist from green wavelengths within their spectrum (such as green), green illumination is most commonly detected due to our adaptation in darkened conditions as our eyes have evolved better at picking out this wavelength portion of spectrum than others (like blue-violet).
Scotland is famous for its traditional music, which remains alive even as other traditional forms worldwide lose ground to pop and rock music. Scotland is also renowned for producing many famous musicians like singer Tori Amos and Alex Harvey as well as electric guitarist Stuart Adamson of Big Country (known as Britain’s Jimi Hendrix) and AC/DC guitarist Angus Young.
Capercaillie are one of Scotland’s best-loved traditional bands, famed for fusing Gaelic songs and music with modern instruments and techniques to produce distinctive renditions that have had an incredible influence on contemporary musical styles – they have even appeared as musical backing for movies like Lord of the Rings or Game of Thrones! This group has made them iconic.
Scottish Highlands are home to more than just pipe bands and ceilidh groups; there are numerous folk music schools providing lessons to both beginners and advanced students alike. Sligachan Music Institute, for example, offers a wide range of courses from three months up to several years long.
Our instructors are among the finest musicians worldwide and possess an unmatched passion for helping students hone their talents in an easygoing atmosphere. Additionally, the staff strives to introduce new audiences to traditional Scottish music and dance through various events throughout the year.
The Scottish Highlands are an oasis of heartwarming ballads and toe-tapping folk rhythms that you won’t easily forget. Their rich culture deserves to be shared with everyone; give a listen! Who knows – maybe you’ll discover your new favorite tune. One such tune is Skye Boat Song which honors its history and culture by telling the tale of Prince Charles Edward Stuart (Bonnie Prince Charlie), fleeing from Benbecula Island during 1745 Jacobite rebellion for Skye Island where his boat then met other boats at anchorage points along its course lilting 6/8 time signature captures sea.
To truly experience Skye’s charms, take to its trails for a hike – they will lead you past breathtaking landscapes and through magical settings.
At Skye’s Quiraing, some of the finest hikes begin. Walk in the footsteps of dinosaurs while admiring its landscape of cracked plateaus and rugged cliffs – not forgetting its most notable resident: Old Man of Storr, an impressive pinnacle-shaped rock formation visible for miles away!
Brothers’ Point offers one of the finest hiking opportunities on Skye, as it showcases some of its most striking landscapes and provides an ideal opportunity to stretch your legs. Seals and seabirds may even make appearances! For maximum effect, visit Brothers’ Point around sunset when it glows golden-hued landscape catches the light beautifully.
The Storr is a popular hike and it is easy to see why; this magical landscape looks straight out of Hobbiton! Additionally, the Storr has become one of Scotland’s most photographed locations making it an essential stop on any traveler’s itinerary.
There are also more challenging hiking routes on the island, like the Quiraing Hike. This strenuous hike takes you up and over Quiraing while providing stunning panoramic views of its landscapes – be sure to bring along your camera! Take your time on this hike – taking it slow can only enhance its experience!
The Skye Trail is an exhilarating seven-day hike through some of Scotland’s most breathtaking landscape. Along high sea cliffs and mountain ridges are abandoned villages due to Highland Clearances; providing you with an immersive glimpse into Skye’s history and culture. It makes an excellent backpacking adventure!