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The southern parts of Skye

Home -> Europe -> Scotland -> Travelogue Scotland -> 25 June 2008

Wednesday 25 June, the southern parts of Skye

Click here for the route and our photographs in Google Earth
The day starts nicely: it is 18 degrees and the sun is shining and we are first enjoying the view outside our house. But as soon as we get in the car at noon it starts to rain and the temperature quickly drops to 13 degrees. We have had it warmer in Scotland in March! Fortunately, we are not here for the weather (although I must admit we mention it very often this trip) and now we can also prove with photos that the sun does not always shine and that it really rains sometimes in Scotland.
The coast at Waterloo, SkyeVia the bridge to Skye, which is toll-free nowadays (after long protests from the local population), we first drive to Broadford where we drive some side roads, such as to Waterloo. I still have the illusion that I can see all the roads in Scotland and I am busy looking for maps on every road we have never been to.
Waterfall along the road Heast and Loch EishortOn the dead-end road to Heast and Loch Eishort we do not come across a garbage truck but an oil car from BP that supplies the remote houses along this road with oil, but otherwise no traffic at all. And of course the inevitable waterfalls along the way. If it were up to me I would like to stop for every waterfall, but I have to admit that Scotland has a lot of them: a hilly landscape, regular rain and soon you have waterfalls of course!
Cow on the B8083Then we take a long way around Loch Slapin, another long 'returning' or dead-end road. Because of the rain and the mist that hangs just above the land, the views are not as wide as we would like, so we can not see the hills of the Red Cuillin. But like almost everywhere on the west coast of Scotland it is a gorgeous landscape, with occasional cattle running on the road.
Loch Slapin Lonely house along Loch SlapinOn our way, past Torrin, we encounter an old limestone quarry where once the so-called Skye marble was mined. Nearby is an abandoned settlement, Keppich, which was once a prosperous town with farm buildings but was completely cleared during the Clearances. Now we wonder sometimes how it is possible that there still are little houses in so many remote places, but it is important to realize that in the 18th and 19th century many more people lived here than now.
On the way back we stop in Broadford to do some shopping and we visit the serpentarium (Reptile World). It burned down a couple of years ago and they probably have lots of financial burdens, but that does not justify the entrance fee of £ 3 per person for the small space you can view. The staff is enthusiastic and we get to hear a lot about slugs, but unfortunately we have already forgotten that information. In any case we have spent half an hour in a dry place.
In the evening I sit outside with a winter coat on, reading: the Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown. I like to read books years before they become a hype, or when I am late, years later when it is not such a hype anymore. It has nothing to do with a travel report, of course, but I have to admit that the book was a big disappointment to me. I have read quite a lot of books (both fiction and history books) about medieval history, but I know better fiction books with a similar conspiracy theory. Most of the information has been described by others much earlier and I do not understand that there has been such a hype: the influence of the media, of course, but I will not start on that, because then this travel story will suddenly get a whole different turn. Still a little disappointed I go to bed in our nice house.


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