My daughter Andrea and I can turn a trip to the farmers market into an adventure, so imagine what it’s like when we go on holiday. Usually our adventures can be classified as quests, journeys, explorations, and sometimes escapades. A typical escapade would be making a wrong turn, getting lost, then realizing we passed what we were looking for three times. Luckily, our adventures during the Isle of Skye tour were kept in check by our experienced guide Ian, from Inverness Tours. Last year he was our guide for only one day, this year it was three days. Poor man.
We had several outdoor adventures, starting with a stop at Glenfinnan on our way to Skye. Above Glenfinnan is the location of the possible site Prince Charles Edward Stuart’s standard was raised, on August 19, 1745. As we stood in front of the weathered rock that recorded the historic location, I was trying to imagine how much determination the Jacobites must have had to fight for their dreams.
My thoughts were interrupted, as I was introduced to the most vicious insects on the planet. Midges! The attack was fast and almost lethal. As the midges swarmed my head, I’m pretty sure I heard one say, “oh-aye, the lass’s hair smells bonnie”. It was just a wee bit annoying at first but by the time we turned to walk down the hill, I had visions of rolling in the grass to dislodge the beasties. I scraped up every bit of self-control I had, not to scratch like a flea-bitten mad dog.
From the hill-top, part of the Glenfinnan Viaduct is visible. If you are a Harry Potter fan you will recognize the viaduct from the movies. No sign of the Hogwarts Express though.
The Fairy Pools
Wearing my favorite walking boots and comfortable leggings, my daughter and I set out for an early morning hike to the Fairy Pools. The Black Cuillin Mountains made a very impressive backdrop as we anxiously made our way to the mystical pools.
As we reached the first pools and waterfalls, we excitedly kept climbing higher and higher to see more.
The pools are said to be enchanted by the fairies giving the water healing properties. Too bad we were not brave enough to go swimming.
The crystal clear water highlighted every rock below the surface. It was impossible to guess if the pools were 20 feet or 2 feet deep.
Niest Point Lighthouse
The Niest Point Lighthouse sits on the most westerly tip of Skye. Built in 1909 by David Alan Stevenson, a member of the famous Stevenson family of engineers, building 14 lighthouses in Scotland.
The lighthouse was visible once we reached the top of the ridge. From there, we had a steep descent. The walk down the path was easy, the walk back up, left me feeling rather irritated that I hadn’t spent more time on the treadmill.
The views of the lighthouse were beautiful as well as the Western Isles on the horizon. I couldn’t ignore the high cliffs and the blue waters below, which kept drawing me closer to the edge.
On the northwest face of the cliffs the Razorbills were the main attraction. I caught a glimpse of one diving off the cliff, to go fishing no doubt.
Looking to the south from Niest Point is Waterstein Head and Moonen Bay. The clouds created a camouflage of shadows on the mountain landscape, changing the rocky features minute by minute as we watched.
The Fairy Glen
As we approached the Fairy Glen, I was unexpectedly filled with disbelief. It was one of the most fascinating places I’ve ever been. I decided that struggling to find the right words to describe the tiny pointed fairy hills, would somehow seem inadequate. Let’s just say, I felt giddy with wonder and amazement when we entered the secretive fairy world.
There are times, when one has to face adventures alone. My dependable daughter Andrea and trustworthy guide Ian, sat comfortably dry in the van watching me. The last words I heard, were from Ian as I turned to go, “you’re on your own”.
Leaning into the wind, I made it to the viewing platform and was relieved there was a railing to hold on to. I could see Kilt Rock through the blowing rain. If only I had known the wind would be gusting 40 mph, I would have loaded my pockets with rocks to anchor my stance.
As I observed the waterfall, it seemed to defy gravity, as the wind blew the water back up. Fighting the wind as long as I could, I made it back to the van, thrilled with my lone quest. I had photos to prove, I made it out there and back.
Don’t miss the next post, the best of the best in Scotland.
Michelle Meyer || Thistle Key Lane ™