Over the last ten years or so, it’s been a tradition of mine to spend my birthday abroad, most recently on either a Spanish island (Ibiza) or a Greek island (Crete). However, when my 41st birthday rolled around last October, while covid cases were starting to worryingly rise again, the only question I had (apart from “how the hell am I 41 already?!”, obviously) was which island I was going to spend it on this time when I didn’t particularly feel safe to fly. So we opted for Skye for a week instead, which turned out to be a great decision!
Now, I have loads of recommendations for places to visit in Skye, and so there will probably be a good few posts about it, but my favourite day of the trip was probably the day after my birthday. It was Monday 5th October, it was sunny and probably teetering towards 20 degrees, and it actually felt like we were abroad for a good few hours.
We decided to visit Neist Point Lighthouse and we couldn’t have chosen a better day for it to be honest. Because it was October, the tourist numbers were starting to drop, but the weather conditions were just perfect for a bit of a walk!
Neist Point is one of the most westernly points of Skye and it is, in my opinion, one of the absolute best attractions not just on the island of Skye, but also in the whole of Scotland.
I’d visited Neist Point before, back in 2015 on our first trip to Skye, but that visit was definitely conducted in more of my stereotypical “lazy gal” style . . . get out the car, have a look at the view, realise it’s a longer walk than I anticipated and that I’m feeling pretty cold, get back in the car. Which is a shame, as it’s a bit of a drive to it, and if you’re going to make the effort to go there, you may as well undertake the walk to the lighthouse, right!?
So this time, we actually decided to do the walk part. And it was actually great . . . she says reluctantly.
I’m not going to lie, I was complaining A LOT. Because although I could see most of the path in front of me, it was quite a bit less straightforward than I anticipated. You go down a path with a series of steps, and then once you get to the bottom, you have to go uphill again . . . now this was the point where I stupidly thought I would be nearly at the lighthouse. But no.
Because when I got to the top of that hill, I realised I had to go downhill again . . . and then uphill again! I was knackered, it was so warm, and my shoes were leaking, and there was sheep poo all over the place . . . but the views were just incredible. It’s definitely worth the visit. And the walk.
But the return walk . . . goodness, that was quite exhausting because, remember, I don’t really do hills. I was pulling myself up the last steps using the handrail (and I’ve generally tried to avoid touching anything outside since covid became a thing but I needed the support desperately). I was so relieved when I got back to the car in one piece, but I was glad I’d actually done it!
So the verdict? It’s a tough walk in my opinion, but absolutely fine if you’re used to hills, and if you’re a bit unfit like me it’s still do-able (complaining is optional!). If you take the straightforward walk and don’t veer off the path to a cliff edge I wouldn’t say it’s particularly dangerous, but I would definitely recommend you choose a nice day for it – I don’t think I would be recommending it had I tried to do it in rainy or windy conditions . . . or ice and snow!
Oh, and I had to bin the shoes afterwards.