Western Isles

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Tarbert ferryThe Western Isles are quite magical. They sit out in the Atlantic and are exposed to whatever it throws at them. It can be wild and windy or sunny and calm; but always interesting. This trip is a cut-down version of a longer one that would take in the whole length of the islands. It does, however, make it easier to start and finish in the same place due to the ferries involved.

You have to travel through Skye to catch the ferry from Uig to Tarbert, on Harris. If you want to do the longer trip, then you might be better to get a ferry for Stornoway, further north on Lewis. Although both Lewis and Harris are both called 'islands' they are, in fact, joined by a narrow neck of land at Tarbert.
 

HarrisOur route took us from Tarbert to Leverburgh where we caught a small passenger ferry that weaves its way through the islands to Newtonferry at the north end of North Uist. There isn't much here and the nearest town of any size - in fact the only town of any size - is Lochmaddy, about 8 miles away.

North Uist is connected to the next large island, Benebecula, by a series of causeways. In turn, Benbecula is connected to South Uist by yet another causeway. This was as far south as we got on this trip since we needed to go back to Lochmaddy for the return ferry to Uig. It's possible, of course, to carry on down the islands and get a ferry for Barra and then back to Oban on the mainland.

If you're blessed with fine weather then that's real bonus but, in any event, it's a trip you won't easily forget.

 

Harris, east coast

Harris, east coast

windswept Benbecula

windswept Benbecula

Benbecula

Benbecula

causeway to St Peter Port

causeway to St Peter Port

croft on Benbecula

croft on Benbecula

St Peter Port

St Peter Port

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