Famous for its rugged landscapes and otherworldly vistas, the Isle of Skye attracts visitors from across the globe. It’s among the most popular tourist destinations in Scotland and continues to fill social media feeds of inspired travelers. With its scenic viewpoints, quaint fishing villages, and hospitable locals, it’s easy to see why.
The Isle of Skye has seen an enormous increase in tourists in recent years, and first-time visitors should come well-prepared. If this beautiful island is on your bucket list, we’ve highlighted some pointers to help you plan your itinerary. Whether you’re looking for the best time to visit or must-see sights, check out these tips for the Isle of Skye.
The primary holiday season on the Isle of Skye starts in May and lasts until September. July and August see the heaviest crowds due to European and American tourists going on a summer holiday in the Isle of Skye. By avoiding peak tourist season, you’ll have an easier time getting around the Isle of Skye. Carparks won’t be full as often, popular attractions see fewer visitors, and accommodation prices are typically lower.
But if you’re unable to avoid the high season, book your Isle of Skye hotel and tours far in advance. April-May and September typically rank as the best months to for an Isle of Skye holiday for fewer crowds and decent weather.
An added benefit of traveling off-season is you won’t have to deal with pesky midges biting you. These mosquito-like bugs can be vicious from May to September and can make your Isle of Skye trip a miserable one. They’re typically more active in the early morning and evening, and you should wear bug repellent when they’re out.
If you intend to visit off-season, you’ll also avoid these annoying critters while exploring the island.
While it’s possible to travel around the Isle of Skye by bus or taxi, there’s nothing like the freedom of going anywhere at a moment’s notice. Public transport options aren’t as frequent when compared to big cities, and they won’t venture to the more remote places on the island. If you forego renting a car, then base yourself in one of Skye’s main villages (Portree, Dunvegan, Broadford, or Kyleakin).
Morrison Car Hire and DriveSkye are the leading car rental agencies located right on the Isle of Skye. Morrison can meet you with your car at numerous places around Skye, and DriveSkye is a family-operated business. If you have a long Scotland itinerary, consider renting a car from Glasgow or Inverness. The scenic drive through the Scottish Highlands will reveal more of the country’s natural beauty.
The Isle of Skye has countless scenic viewpoints, and starting your day early is crucial for the best experience. While there’s more sunlight during summer, you’ll be fighting traffic jams and full carparks across the island. The crowds may be gone during the off-season, but your days will be shorter. Either way, it’s imperative to set your alarm early and get out the door for a full day of adventures. You may wince at the thought but departing by sunrise is the best way to maximise your time.
Whichever season you prefer, it’s difficult to avoid rain on the Isle of Skye. The island has a mild oceanic climate and rainfall is seen throughout the year. While some months see less rainfall than others, it’s best to prepare yourself for showers at any time. Plus, the average temperature range from 6°C (42.8°F) to 15°C (59°F) makes packing a jacket essential.
If you’re desperate to avoid rainfall, then April, June, and July are the months to schedule your trip. October to January is the rainiest time of the year on Skye.
With its jagged peaks, glistening lochs, and cliffside vistas, the Isle of Skye is a hiker’s dream. There are dozens of thrilling hikes that present the most epic snapshots of the island. Fortunately, there are trails suitable for all levels of hikers on Skye’s rugged terrain. From mostly-flat strolls to challenging multi-day treks, there’s a hike on Skye for everyone.
Two of the most popular hikes on the Isle of Skye are the Fairy Pools and the Old Man of Storr. Engulfed by the Black Cuillins, the Fairy Pools trail courses through a valley and leads to several sparkling pools on the River Brittle. The Old Man of Storr hike can get busy, but the climb to the rocky pinnacle offers one of the most jaw-dropping panoramas of Skye.
While the Fairy Pools and Old Man of Storr are must-see sights on Skye, it only scratches the surface for hikers. The Quiraing takes you to the high cliffs of the Trotternish Ridge, the trek to Camasunary Bay follows the mighty Cuillin Mountains, and the views from Neist Point Lighthouse feel like you’re on the edge of the world. And for seasoned hikers looking to go the extra mile, the 125 km Skye Trail is an unofficial path that leads to some of the least-visited spots on the island.
Whisky is Scotland’s most famous export, and Seumas’ Bar is a popular spot on the Isle of Skye amongst visitors to sample hundreds of Scottish malts. Connected to the Sligachan Hotel near the Sligachan Old Bridge, the tavern is a popular hangout amongst locals and tourists. Hardy adventurers often stop in for a filling meal after a day on the Cuillin, and whisky connoisseurs take their pick out of 400+ malts.
Seumas’ Bar is a frequent recipient of the “Whisky Bar of the Year” award and also serves ales on tap. The adjacent Cuillin Brewery provides many of the ales, so you’ll get a true taste of Skye.
Book by: Jun 30th 2022
Book by: Jun 30th 2022
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