Located in one of the farthest corners of Scotland, the Isle of Skye is a place where imaginations run as wild as its twisted paths. If you’re not careful, you might even find yourself believing in the supernatural.
The Vikings called the 50-miles stretch of land “sky-a” or “cloud island” where they carefully — almost reverently — explored the landscape. While their footsteps no longer plod across the glen, visitors have carved their own winding paths across the budding hills and through the glistening fairy pools.
According to Scottish folklore, some parts of the land are more magical than others. Judging by the amount of places named after fairies, the Scottish clearly thought highly of the Isle of Skye. Places like Fairy Glen, Fairy Pools, and even the Fairy Bridge are all said to be gathering places for pixies. But, those aren’t the only magical creatures said to have called this land home. Legend has it giants once walked among the gigantic cliffs and sea kelpies guarded the shores.
Years ago, the Scots believed the island had mystic powers. You can’t blame them. The landscape is rugged and the weather can be moody with cliffs and hills jutting precariously from the landscape at impossible angles — taunting even the most daring of adventurers. For years, the Old Man of Storr was an impossible feat for any climber. You don’t have to ascend it to enjoy its beauty though. Walking the ridge to the base takes just over an hour, giving you full access to the choppy coastline of the Sound of Raasay.
If you want a more magical outdoor experience, there are areas like the Fairy Pools. Nestled at the base of the Black Cuillins, hikers can follow the deep blue water down the River Brittle, across water falls, and over the stepping stones to take a dip in the crystal waters.
No trip to the Isle of Skye is complete without a trip to the Quaraing. Located at the very tip of the isle, the Quaraing has bold cliff faces and stunning, rolling hills that will leave you breathless. It’s one of the most photographed places in Scotland and is the perfect spot for a picnic lunch on a clear day.