Scotland - Western Highlands and Islands

Wonderguide by

Kit Smyth

Scotland - Western Highlands and Islands

The Western Highlands and Islands of Scotland, home to historic and national heroes, whisky, fierce clan battles, and breath-taking scenery. Here, you'll find a myriad of ways to fill your days, and find yourself.

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West Highlands

Must see locations on the mainland

Image - Mull of Kintyre
Mull of Kintyre
Kit:With views to inspire music, this is a sight to behold.
Image - Mull of Kintyre Lighthouse
Mull of Kintyre Lighthouse
Kit:The southern most point of the Mull of Kintyre, look out across to Ireland from here.
Image - Oban
Kit:Home to historic castles, and gateway to the western isle, catch a CalMac ferry from here to start your island hopping adventure.
Image - Glencoe
Kit:Site of one of Scotlands most well-known, and oft misunderstood, tragedies.
Image - Inveraray Castle
Inveraray Castle
Kit:The castle that launched a Scottish dynasty, home of Clan Campbell.
Image - Inveraray
Kit:The village behind the castle, the strength that supported the name.
Image - Loch Awe
Loch Awe
Kit:You could never say 'oh, it's just another loch' when talking about Loch Awe.
Image - Loch Etive
Loch Etive
Kit:One of the most photographed lochs in Scotland, come and see why.
Image - Rest and be Thankful Viewpoint
Rest and be Thankful Viewpoint
Kit:Whether heading into, or out of the Western Isles, stopping here to admire the view is a must!
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Isle of Skye

Fairy rings, standing stones, mountainous rock formations, and breath-taking scenery await.

Image - Skye
Kit:Go Munro-bagging, or explore the gleaming beaches on the Isle of Skye.
Image - Portree
Kit:A painter's palette of colours, and quaint Scottish cottages, Portree's the seaside village everyone should visit.
Image - Fairy Pools
Fairy Pools
Kit:Whispering waters and ancient tales of fairies, these pools have captivated for eons.

Treshnish and Staffa

Puffins, seals, and mysterious rock formations.

Image - Treshnish Isles
Treshnish Isles
Kit:Puffins, Razorbills, and Gullimots, these are but a few of the birds that inhabit the Treshnish Isles.
Image - Staffa
Kit:Mendelssohn's 'Hebrides Overture' was inspired by this natural wonder, just one visit and you'll see why.
Image - Staffa Tours
Staffa Tours
Kit:One trip, two locations, and a lifetime of memories.
Image - Staffa Tours Tobermory
Staffa Tours Tobermory
Kit:Staffa Tours northern location for their two isles adventure.

Isle of Mull

From Tobermory to Fionnphort, Calgary to Duart, this isle has something for everyone!

Image - Isle of Mull
Isle of Mull
Kit:Whether it's the real-life setting for a children's story, wildlife watching, world-class artisan wares, or secluded beaches, Mull has something for everyone.

Loch Lomond & The Trossachs

You take the high road, or the low, and you'll see the lochs in all their beauty.

Image - Loch Lomond
Loch Lomond
Kit:Whether the high or low roads take your fancy, this loch will leave you spellbound.

Isle of Iona

The holy island of Iona, burial site of ancient kings, and monastic dynasties.

Image - Iona
Kit:An abbey, and an island, both to be explored and admired. Also, check out the Celtic crosses that line the procession to the abbey.

Isle of Arran

Scotland in miniature. If you can only visit one Scottish island, let it be this one!

Image - Isle of Arran
Isle of Arran
Kit:Known as 'Scotland in miniature' this small island has everything, from mountain ranges to sandy shores, historic houses to quaint sea-side villages.

Isles of Lewis and Harris

Tweed cloth, and abandoned villages, these two islands are packed with tales to tell.

Image - Harris
Kit:Famous for its tweed cloth, infamous for its pristine beaches.
Image - Lewis and Harris
Lewis and Harris
Kit:Mountains, beaches, crystalline waters, Lewis and Harris have it all.

Muck, Rum, Eigg, and Canna, the Small Isles

Small, but infamous, these islands should not be missed

Image - Small Isles
Small Isles
Kit:Often overlooked, these small isles are filled with natural wonders, and Scottish history from the folk who lived here for centuries.

Isles of Tiree and Coll

Famed for their wildlife and scenery

Image - Tiree
Kit:Wilderness and waterfronts, Tiree is worth exploring.
Image - Coll
Kit:Just a hop, skip, and jump from Tiree, Coll is filled with natural wonders.

Colonsay and Oronsay

Just off the coasts of Islay and Jura, small but remarkable islands!

Image - Colonsay
Image - Oronsay

Isle of Islay

World renowned whisky, devastating scenery, and intriguing histories.

Image - Islay
Kit:Is there more to Islay than whisky distilleries? Perhaps, go there and discover its hidden gems for yourself...

Isle of Jura

Wedged between the mainland and Islay, this island has much to offer

Image - Jura
Kit:The quiet isle, modest, mindful, and spellbinding.

North and South Isles of Uist

Not to be missed, never to be forgotten, the Uists have much in store for those seeking an escape from the world.

Image - Travelade Image
Kit:Remote beaches, hidden gems, the Uists are well worth exploring.

My Recommendations

A few of my favourite picks, tours, sights, and tasty bites!

Image - Glenfinnan Viaduct
Glenfinnan Viaduct
Kit:Made famous by the Hogwarts train in Harry Potter.
Image - Rabbie's Tours
Rabbie's Tours
Kit:Only have a few days in Scotland, see as much as you can with Rabbie!
Image - Rabbie's Tours Glasgow
Rabbie's Tours Glasgow
Kit:Just like their Edinburgh location, Rabbie will have you out exploring Scotland quickly and comfortably!

Wonderguide map

  1. Mull of Kintyre
  2. Mull of Kintyre Lighthouse
  3. Oban
  4. Glencoe
  5. Inveraray Castle
  6. Inveraray
  7. Loch Awe
  8. Loch Etive
  9. Rest and be Thankful Viewpoint
  10. Skye
  11. Portree
  12. Fairy Pools
  13. Treshnish Isles
  14. Staffa
  15. Staffa Tours
  16. Staffa Tours Tobermory
  17. Isle of Mull
  18. Loch Lomond
  19. Iona
  20. Isle of Arran
  21. Harris
  22. Lewis and Harris
  23. Small Isles
  24. Tiree
  25. Coll
  26. Colonsay
  27. Oronsay
  28. Islay
  29. Jura
  30. Uist
  31. Glenfinnan Viaduct
  32. Rabbie's Tours
  33. Rabbie's Tours Glasgow

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