The Scottish Western Islands or the Outer Hebrides are a chain of more than 100 islands and small skerries, and only 15 of them are inhabited. The main islands: Barra, Benbecula, Berneray, Harris, Lewis, North Uist, South Uist, St Kilda. The tranquillity of these isolated islands attracting many tourists every year.
Isle of Barra is a perfect place for cycling, the main road loops more than 10 miles around the island. It’s interesting that Barra Airport uses the beach as the runway, but it means that flight times vary with the tide.
Kisimul Castle is a small medieval castle, which sits on a rocky islet in the bay just off the coast of Barra. It can only be reached by boat.
Harris and Lewis are actually one and the largest island, it incorporates Harris in the south and Lewis in the north, both of which are referred to as individual islands. Lewis is a flat peat moor, and Harris are mostly rugged, with rocky peaks and beautiful beaches.
The Callanish Stones are an arrangement of standing stones placed in a cruciform pattern with a central stone circle. They were erected in the late Neolithic era, and were a focus for ritual activity during the Bronze Age.
The culture of the residents has been affected by the successive influences of Celtic, Norse, and English-speaking people. Gaelic is the first language for the majority of the Outer Hebrides islanders.
The main commercial activities are tourism, crofting, fishing, and weaving, including the manufacture of famous Harris tweed. For centuries the islanders have woven cloth by hand.
The St Kilda, is an isolated archipelago west of the Outer Hebrides, and its main island Hirta, whose sea cliffs are the highest in the United Kingdom. The islands’ human heritage includes numerous unique architectural features from the historic and prehistoric periods.
The Outer Hebrides have a cool temperate climate that is remarkably mild and steady for such a northerly latitude. There are numerous sites of wrecked ships, and the Flannan Isles are the location of an enduring mystery that occurred in December 1900, when all three lighthouse keepers vanished without trace.