Best places to visit in the Outer Hebrides

Where the wind blows

LIGHTHOUSE, BUTT OF LEWIS: www.undiscoveredscotland.co.uk/lewis/buttoflewis/index.html The most north-westerly lighthouse in Britain, on the tip of Lewis, was designed by brothers David and Thomas Stevenson and opened in 1862. Thomas was the father of Robert Louis Stevenson. North from here, there is only ocean until you reach the Arctic – and the first dry land west is Canada. The lighthouse was automated in 1998 and is the windiest spot in the UK

BLACKHOUSE, ARNOL: www.undiscoveredscotland.co.uk/lewis/blackhouse museum/index.html The blackhouse at Arnol is far more realistic than the tourist-oriented blackhouses at Garenin. Arnol faithfully replicates what living conditions were like in this style of house. Tough doesn't begin to describe it. Animals and people shared the blackhouse. The Blackhouse Museum is run by Historic Scotland with an excellent visitor centre.

THE IOLAIRE MEMORIAL www.adb422006.com/iolaire.html This monument is located on the shore opposite Sandwickhill primary school at Holm on the road between Stornoway and its airport. The Iolaire sank on 1st January, 1919 and 205 men, most of whom were returning home following the end of the First World War, died. It was the worst maritime disaster in peacetime in UK waters, but very few people are aware of it. Men who had survived the very worst conflict in the Great War drowned within sight of the lights of Stornoway. Not a village in Lewis was unaffected.

COASTAL WALKS: walking.visitscotland.com/walks/hebrides/212602

Make the most of fresh Atlantic air and enjoy a coastal walk. One pleasant walk starts at the blackhouse village at Garenin via the beautiful sandy beach at Dalmore to Dalbeg. The more adventurous can stroll close to the cliffs to savour more fully the splendour of the scenery.

WHALEBONE ARCH AT BRAGAR, www.bragar whalebone.co.uk/marymacaulay.html You cannot miss the arch: situated beside the main road, it forms a gateway to a nearby house. The two bones that form the arch are the lower jaw of a blue whale that beached at Bragar in 1920. A harpoon is still embedded in the bone. The jaws measure 25ft eachin length and weigh about four tons, and the whalebone arch reaches a height of approximately 20ft. Imagine the size of the whale if that was the size of just its jaw!


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