Scotland boasts an abundance of islands, each with their own unique character and charm. Island-hopping is a fantastic way to explore the rugged beauty of this country and immerse yourself in its rich history and culture. Here's a guide to some of the best Scottish islands to visit, including Lewis and Harris, Islay, and Staffa. Let's get started!
What's special about all those islands?
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Located in the Outer Hebrides, Lewis and Harris are two distinct islands connected by a land isthmus. Lewis is known for its rugged landscapes and rich history, including the prehistoric standing stones at Callanish. Harris, on the other hand, boasts stunning beaches such as Luskentyre and Seilebost, which are popular for their turquoise waters and white sands. Visitors can also explore traditional Harris Tweed workshops and enjoy some of the best seafood in Scotland.
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Famous for its world-renowned whisky, Islay is a must-visit for whisky enthusiasts. The island has eight working distilleries, each with its own unique flavor and character. Islay is also home to beautiful beaches, historic sites such as Kildalton Cross, and wildlife including seals and otters. Visitors can take a ferry from the mainland to explore this charming island.
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Located off the west coast of Scotland, Staffa is a small uninhabited island that is home to some of the most unusual and spectacular geological formations in the world. The island's most famous feature is Fingal's Cave, a sea cave with hexagonal basalt columns that inspired the music of Mendelssohn. Visitors can take a boat tour from the nearby island of Mull to explore this natural wonder.
When planning an island-hopping adventure in Scotland, it's important to note that ferry services can be limited, especially in the offseason. It's best to plan your itinerary in advance and check ferry schedules to avoid any disappointment.
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