MorningAfternoon. Land on Lewis, and explore these diverse and interconnected islands from Harris, North Uist, Benbecula, South Uist, Eriskay to Barra. In 1942, the SS Politican struck rocks to the north of the island. From the summit you’ll see why Benbecula is described locally as “more loch than rock” and the reason for the island’s Gaelic name, Beinn na Faoghla, which translates as “mountain of the fords”. The islands also enjoy extremes of weather (witness the Force 10 storm that blew an oil rig ashore on Lewis in 2016) and if you are in search of elemental, battered landscapes without heading to the ends of the earth, this is the place to come. So here’s just a taster. Best known for its beautiful beaches that wouldn’t look out of place in the Caribbean, the island of Barra is the most southerly of the inhabited Outer Hebrides. A small link on the chain of Outer Hebridean islands that includes Harris, Lewis and North and South Uist, Barra has many claims to fame. Just 124m high, it rises abruptly from sea level to give extraordinary views up and down the Outer Hebrides. Read below for more weather and travel details. Grimsay is a tiny island roughly three miles long and half again in width, joined to North Uist and Benbecula by a causeway. Also found on the island is the invaluable RSPB reserve at Balranald, providing a crucial safe haven. If you climb just one hill in the Outer Hebrides, make it Rueval on Benbecula. Best known for its beautiful beaches that wouldn’t look out of place in the Caribbean, the island of Barra is the most southerly of the inhabited Outer Hebrides. The uniquely designed treehouse cabins are nestled amongst the forest with views out to long sandy beaches, Vallay island … Outer Hebrides Tourism: Tripadvisor has 53,789 reviews of Outer Hebrides Hotels, Attractions, and Restaurants making it your best Outer Hebrides resource. Read the reviews and book. The charming hill offers views of up to (depending on the weather) multiple nearby islands and is a true natural beauty spot. ‘The gateway to the Uists’, Benbecula is beautiful, lying between bigger neighbours with its own airport bringing supplies to the island. Its Outer Hebrides Hopscotch trip costs from £645 per person, including a week's b&b (based on two sharing) and all ferry crossings. You can search for businesses that are open, and Good to Go with a Covid-19 risk assessment. The Outer Hebrides are home to many artists and on a remote road by Loch Euphort on North Uist you’ll find Shoreline Stoneware, a studio run by the sculptor Louise Cook. The most visited and largest of the Western Isles is the brooding Isle of Skye, a short ferry ride or bridge away from the mainland. June 11th to September 16th. One of the most unusual sights in all of Scotland, Barra Airport uses beaches at Cockle Shand (during low tide) as a runway; such is the pristine condition of this stretch of coastline. On route to America carrying thousands of cases of Whisky and Jamaican currency, islanders helped the crew to safety before saving some of the cargo. The best time to go to the Hebrides is between April and October when the weather is most stable and mild, and almost all trips operate only in this window. A visit to Benbecula would not be complete without stopping by Gramsdale Standing Stones. The largest island in the Outer Hebrides hosts a troop of tantalising pubs, restaurants and local delicacies. Rising sheer above the island is the crest of the 'Sgurr of Eigg' offering a great hike and stunning views across the waters of the Minch to the Outer Hebrides. On the west coast of Lewis, it’s a haunting slender central monolith surrounded by a complex of stones perched on an elevated promontory. Hillwalking, whale-watching excursions and boat trips to weird Fingal’s Cave on uninhabited Staffa are top activity choices. Afterwards munch on cake and enjoy a coffee at the Ravenspoint visitor centre in Kershadar. The wildlife, too, is breathtaking: deer to dolphins, otters to golden eagles are all easily spotted. You’ll find precious few Hebrides holidays outside the main season, but some do operate, for instance photography holidays around Islay and Jura in March allow you to capture the islands’ dramatic scenery at the cusp of spring. The island has Iron Age forts, a 6th-century church, and turbulent clan history with a massacre of 395 MacDonalds in a sea-shore cave. YesNo, Our Call Back facility is available 9am-5pm Monday - Friday. Callanish is Stonehenge without the crowds or the timed ticket entry – or indeed any ticket whatsoever. You have been successfully subscribed to our newsletter. Hidden in the sand for the best part of 300 years, they were revealed either by a storm or a cow rubbing its backside on a dune (there’s no correct answer, so take your pick). Climbing the battlements, visitors can look out across the bay and surrounding landscape. The Lewis chessmen were discovered on a wild beach in Uig, located in the far south-west of Lewis. At the bottom of the Outer Hebridean islands lies Vatersay, the filming location used during the production of the film ‘Whisky Galore’. Often referred to as the ‘Castle in the Sea’, the castle rests out on a rock in Castle Bay. Got a travel suggestion or story you want to share, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Best 3 Star Hotels in Outer Hebrides on Tripadvisor: Find traveller reviews, candid photos, and prices for 8 three star hotels in Outer Hebrides, United Kingdom. #6 Best Value of 216 places to stay in Outer Hebrides “ The hosts Tom and Sue are just great.The atmosphere is so relaxed in the beautiful sitting room , and the view out to sea is amazing. It was home to a medieval castle, once the stronghold of the MacLeods who were said to be descended from the 12th century Norseman, Olav the Black, King of Man and the Isles. The existing Open Comments threads will continue to exist for those who do not subscribe to Independent Premium. And that’s where you’ll find the best hotels on the Outer Hebrides. The small chain of islands boasts some of the UK’s finest beaches, dramatic scenery, a variety of wildlife, wild mountain ranges as well as a rich history and unique Gaelic culture. The island pub, Am Politician, has two original whisky bottles from the ill-fated steamer behind the bar, though the whisky inside is sadly no longer palatable. The Outer Hebrides / ˈ h ɛ b r ɪ d iː z / or Western Isles (Scottish Gaelic: Na h-Eileanan Siar [nə ˈhelanən ˈʃiəɾ] or Na h-Eileanan an Iar [nə ˈhelanən əˈɲiəɾ] (); Scots: Waster Isles), sometimes known as Innse Gall ("islands of the strangers") or the Long Isle/Long Island (Scottish Gaelic: An t-Eilean Fada), is an island chain off the west coast of mainland Scotland. Holding a crucial role in ancient rituals once performed at the site, the exact purpose of the stones are still shrouded in a degree of mystery to this day. South Uist’s population is relatively small, leaving vast portions of the land untouched and left to prosper under Mother Nature’s careful guidance. After being stuck at home for months, I was 100% in. Both archipelagos feature far-flung, sand-fringed edges where your footprints may be the only indent made all day on the fine substrate. It allows our most engaged readers to debate the big issues, share their own experiences, discuss real-world solutions, and more. During your time on Eriskay, we thoroughly recommend visiting Prince Charlie’s Bay. Explore Outer Hebrides holidays and discover the best time and places to visit. I … Cleaver, The Boathouse, HS1, Eleven and the Harbour Kitchen all serve stunning fish and seafood right in the heart of Stornoway. Book your tickets online for the top things to do in Outer Hebrides, The Hebrides on Tripadvisor: See and photos of Outer Hebrides tourist attractions. Of the 119 island of the Western Isles, or Outer Hebrides, there are only five main inhabited islands, Lewis and Harris - which, despite the two names, are actually two parts of the same island, North and South Uist, Barra and Benbecula. Set sail on an island adventure to the Outer Hebrides. These include shells, rocks, seaweed, fishing nets and even washed-up glass – which gives a watery rockpool effect to her bowls. Dining in Outer Hebrides, The Hebrides: See 16,261 Tripadvisor traveller reviews of 127 Outer Hebrides restaurants and search by cuisine, price, location, and more. Steve Olley runs Croft 36, a kind of seaside shack serving crab ravioli, pasties and mouthwatering cakes. Outer Hebrides Covid-19 Advice. To name them all would be a bit of a mouthful. The Outer Hebrides are islands of extremes: 119 islands (of which just 14 are inhabited) dangling in the far north-west corner of the map of the UK. A journey through Lewis and Harris, the wild heart of Scotland's Outer Hebrides The Scottish island of Lewis and Harris, in the Outer Hebrides, is home to an unfathomable number of shades of blue, which extend from the sea to the sky. There’s a food trail, pointing you to the many small-scale outlets where you can enjoy salmon, chocolate cake or a dram of whisky produced with water from the island’s own hills. This beautiful archipelago, where Scottish Gaelic is still spoken, is divided into the Inner and Outer Hebrides and stretches the length of Scotland's west coast. Callanish is like Stonehenge without the crowds, You may not agree with our views, or other users’, but please respond to them respectfully, Swearing, personal abuse, racism, sexism, homophobia and other discriminatory or inciteful language is not acceptable, Do not impersonate other users or reveal private information about third parties, We reserve the right to delete inappropriate posts and ban offending users without notification. 187 students), Sgoil Lionacleit in Benbecula (approx. Inner Hebrides Tour – 6 Glorious Scottish islands visited, A wildlife paradise – 7 animals on Mull for ‘Eagle-eyed’ visitors to look out for. Copyright © D.C. Thomson & Co. Ltd. All Rights Reserved. Connect to its neighbours via a series of causeways; North Uist is a beautiful, small island that offers stunning, relatively untouched beaches home to some fabulous wildlife found in the centre of the Western Isles archipelago. Found between Barra and South Uist and connected via a causeway, the island of Eriskay has strong Norse routes. The island’s capital, Stornoway, is one of the best natural harbours in the Outer Hebrides. Along with stunning footage of the islands’ natural wonders – which will whet your appetite to explore further – the museum humanises its stories of fishing, farming and song. The fish has usually been caught the same morning by Steve. If you would like us to call you back when it's more convenient for you, simply complete the form below and Send, When is best to call you? Here’s a breakdown of the tour and a proper look at some of the best walks in the Outer Hebrides. Want to bookmark your favourite articles and stories to read or reference later? And equally dazzling are the shell sand beaches. Once ruled by the Clan MacNeil, a visit to Barra would not be complete without exploring Kisimul Castle – the seat of the famous Scottish clan. Must-see stops include Cromor for views across to Skye and Orinsay. One of the biggest islands in the Scottish Western Isles, South Uist is the jewel in the Outer Hebrides crown. Our journalists will try to respond by joining the threads when they can to create a true meeting of independent Premium. ... Hidden in the sand for the best … Key attractions include beautiful Loch Euport and Trinity Temple the ruins of which could possibly be the site of Europe’s oldest university. We have reviews of the best places to see in Outer Hebrides. The Outer Hebrides have been, and continue to be, an area of great interest to archaeologists and have offered a vast amount of information about what Scotland was like throughout history. Inside the recently restored castle, notable decorations include beautiful murals and intricately created plaster ceilings. If not, it definitely should be. The best times to visit Outer Hebrides for ideal weather are. Which publication, if any, do you normally read? We are always interested in hearing from our visitors. The Outer Hebrides are is under Level 1 restrictions.. Find out more about Covid-19 restrictions and the latest Outer Hebrides Covid Advice to plan and book your trip. Due to the sheer scale of this comment community, we are not able to give each post the same level of attention, but we have preserved this area in the interests of open debate. New and shiny, the Museum nan Eilean, or island museum in the port of Stornoway hosts galleries and interactive displays about the past and present of the islands. From neolithic stones, to historic castles, monuments and ruins you can learn more at the many museums in the Outer Hebrides. The Outer Hebrides are islands of extremes: 119 islands (of which just 14 are inhabited) dangling in the far north-west corner of the map of the UK. The site was originally chosen thanks to its close proximity to a stream with the original mill also housing a kiln used to dry out crops harvested from surrounding fields. Look out for porpoises, puffins, gannets, skuas and golden and white-tailed eagles. Before I knew it Vicky had booked our ferries and a few places to stay and we were on our way up to Scotland. One of the largest islands in the entire British Isles, Harris and Lewis can be an extremely rewarding visit, serving up a range of memorable and famous Scottish experiences. Start your Independent Premium subscription today. Beautiful and sparsely populated, like many of the islands making our list, Eriskay has a strong fishing heritage with nearby waters offering rewarding fishing territory. Uig sands are eye-poppingly beautiful and immense: the tidal range is more than a mile and at low tide you can barely pick out the sea on the horizon. Here Charles Edward Stuart or ‘Bonnie Prince Charlie’ landed on the beach in the summer of 1745 just before the ‘Forty-Five Jacobite Rising’. A wonderful natural habitat, be on the lookout for the island’s wide array of wildflowers that prosper on the island. The site dates back 5,000 years and its provenance remains uncertain, though most likely was tied to lunar activity. Lochmaddy is the main town on the island, home 300 people North Uist inhabited by humans as far back as the 3rd century. Eriskay is best known for the novel Whisky Galore and the Ealing comedy of the same name. The place is a bit tired and could do with an update which is probably on the cards, but… Follow us on Facebook or on Instagram @DCThomsonTravel. At least a dozen satellite sites surround the central stones; two, Callanish II and Callanish III, are within easy walking distance of the main site. Are you sure you want to delete this comment? Placed thousands of years ago, the Standing Stones of Callanish Stones have stood since the Bronze Age – over three thousand years! The island’s coastline is sliced and diced with countless inlets, bays and lochs and there are several uninhabited skerries on which to haul up and enjoy your own beach for a day and even camp overnight. The best hotels in the Outer Hebrides, chosen by our expert, including luxury hotels, boutique hotels, budget hotels and Outer Hebrides hotel deals. Thank you. Isle of Lewis Food. Louise embellishes her eye-catching designs – such as ceramic baskets – with colours taken from the island shores. Smaller than other ritual sites yet still a worthwhile stop, this Pictish landmark is one of the more mysterious in this remote part of Scotland. Are you sure you want to mark this comment as inappropriate? Charting the history of the Outer Hebrides, the museum has a number of key exhibits including six of the famous Lewis Chessmen and a number of Gaelic-led exhibitions. Eriskay actually translates in Norse to ‘Eric’s Island’. Please continue to respect all commenters and create constructive debates. Look out for some great birds including Lapwings and Corn Buntings with wildlife flourishing on the islands thanks to its unusual blend of bogs, beaches and stretches of Machair fields. You can find our Community Guidelines in full here. #6 Best Value of 215 places to stay in Outer Hebrides “ Very clean, very comfortable, very friendly, very helpful - the new owner is clearly starting as he means to go on. Free Wifi Rising sheer above the island is the crest of the ‘Sgurr of Eigg’ offering a great hike and stunning views across the waters of the Minch to the Outer Hebrides.