Outer Hebrides Holiday Guide

Leave mainland Scotland behind and sail to the Outer Hebrides, a place of rugged island scenery, mysterious standing stones and proud Gaelic traditions. Prepare yourself for one of the UK’s most remote and ancient landscapes, where life drifts along at a gentler pace than elsewhere in the country. Traditional farming methods are still practised on these islands, as well as traditional religious observances – many pubs and shops close their doors on Sundays. Renowned for its great natural beauty, the Outer Hebrides offers pristine beaches, nature reserves and stunning wilderness walks that will astonish travellers. From impressive sea-stacks teetering along the coastline to multi-coloured carpets of orchids and wild flowers (known locally as the machair) the Outer Hebrides will have you reaching for your camera.

Outer Hebrides Landmarks

Immerse yourself in the ancient mysteries of the Outer Hebrides with a visit to the Callanish Stone Circle, a 5,000-year-old stone circle on the island of Lewis, or see how Hebridean crofters eked out a living from the land at the fascinating Arnol Blackhouse.

For an exhilarating mountain ascent, take the steep approach to Clisham on Harris, over the rough-hewn ridges of Mulla-Fo-Thuath and Mulla-Fo-Dheas. Experiencing true remoteness is also possible on a boat trip to St. Kilda, the westernmost point in Scotland. This uninhabited archipelago is a nature reserve, and was once the home of a group of hardy islanders. Today it remains a haven for sea birds. Explore St Kilda’s fascinating story and see the abundant wildlife that characterises the area on a fairy-tale visit.

Outer Hebrides Museums and Galleries

The Outer Hebrides has offered a peaceful and inspiring refuge for many artists, writers and creative thinkers. Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum & Arts Centre on the island of North Uist is the perfect place to learn about the artistic and cultural life of the islands. Introduce yourself to the local history of the Hebrides at The Kinloch Museum on the Isle of Lewis, or explore ancestral connections at the Angus Macleod Archive.

Fashions change with times but Harris Tweed has remained popular for centuries – discover the process behind the crafting of this iconic Hebridean material at the Carloway Mill on the Isle of Lewis. Throughout the Hebrides there are many arts and crafts studios where you can see working craftspeople and pick up distinctive souvenirs.

Outer Hebrides Shopping, Restaurants and Nightlife

Shop for paintings, textiles, pottery, handmade jewellery and accessories in the independent shops of the Outer Hebrides. Find yourself a unique gift to take home from this island paradise. Stornoway, the main town on the islands, has many fine shops that will reward the inquisitive shopper. There are plenty of places to eat in Stornoway too, including cosy cafes and award-winning restaurants. Traditional local delicacies include Stornoway black pudding and seafood lovers won’t want to miss a plate of fresh, hand dived scallops. There are a variety of events and festivals on the Outer Hebrides throughout the year, which attract an international crowd. The Ceòlas music festival in South Uist, and the Hebridean Celtic Festival, celebrate the area’s musical heritage. A trip to an annual Highland Games event in the area is a nice way to see the lighter side of these incredible islands too.

Wherever you choose to stay in the Outer Hebrides, you will certainly find a peaceful Scottish haven. Get away from it all by booking a hotel and flights with Expedia.

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