WESTERN ISLES

 
 

 
BlackhouseArnol, Isle of LewisHouse
A traditional, fully furnished, Lewis thatched house that provides a unique insight into island life. There is also an attached barn, byre and stackyard. Beside the Blackhouse, a furnished 1920s whitehouse can also be seen. Visitor centre with interpretative displays explaining the history of the site and locally-made crafts.

Calanais Standing Stones and Visitor CentreCalanis, Isle of LewisStanding Stones
Calanais comprises a late Neolithic stone ring and associated lines of standing stones. Situated on a prominent ridge, it is visible from miles around. Excavations have revealed that the ring was set up between 2900 and 2600 BC, making it earlier than the main circle at Stonehenge. It has a unique arrangement, with lines of stones radiating in four directions from the ring. It is not fully clear whether the stone alignments were constructed at the same time as the ring, or later. The layout of the site, along with many others across the British Isles, appears to have an association with astronomical events, the precise nature of which cannot be determined.

Dun Carloway BrochCarloway, Isle of LewisBroch
One of the best preserved broch towers in Scotland.

Kisimul CastleCastlebay, Isle of BarraCastle
Kisimul Castle (Caisteal Chiosmuil, ‘castle of the rock of the small bay’) is testament to the nature of Gaelic lordship in the Middle Ages. The island fastness in Castle Bay was the residence of the chief of the Macneils of Barra, who claimed descent from the legendary Niall of the Nine Hostages. Tradition tells of the Macneils settling in Barra in the 11th century, but it was only in 1427 that Gilleonan Macneil comes on record as the first lord. He probably built the castle that dominates the rocky islet, and in its shadow a crew house for his personal galley and crew. The sea coursed through Macneil veins, and a descendant, Ruari ‘the Turbulent’, was arrested for piracy of an English ship during King James VI’s reign in the later 16th century.

St Clement's ChurchRodel, Isle of HarrisChurch
A fine 16th-century church, built by the eighth chief MacLeod of Dunvegan and Harris and containing his richly-carved tomb.

St KildaSt KildaIsland
Lying 41 miles we the st of North Uist, St Kilda is home to the largest colony of seabirds in northern Europe, including a quarter of the world’s population of northern gannets. The majestic scenery above water is mirrored by cliffs, caves and reefs plunging into the far depths of the ocean. All teem with carpets of anemones, sponges and other life. St Kilda is no less famous for its human history. A fragile community clung on for at least 4,000 years in this most remote of places. The Soay sheep has been preserved on the island almost unchanged in 4,000 years and is one of the most primitive breeds in the world. The village on the main island of Hirta was laid out in the 1830s and consists of a crescent of houses with cultivated plots. These were typical Hebridean single-roomed blackhouses, which the occupants shared with their cattle in winter. From the mid-19th century the St Kildans began to lose their self-sufficiency. Finally, on 29 August 1930, the remaining 36 islanders were evacuated to the mainland.

Steinacleit Cairn And Stone CircleShader, Isle of LewisPrehistoric Site
The remains of an enigmatic structure of early prehistoric date.


 
An Lanntair Arts CentreStornoway, Isle of Lewis
Barra AirportIsle of Barra
Barra Heritage CentreCastlebay, Isle of Barra
Borgh PotteryBorve, Isle of Lewis
Bosta Iron Age HouseBernera, Isle of Lewis
Castlebay Tourist Information CentreCastlebay, Isle of Barra
Dualchas: Barra Heritage and Cultural CentreIsle of Barra
Fear an EichBack, Isle of Lewis
Gearrannan Blackhouse VillageCarloway, Isle of Lewis
Harbour View GalleryPort of Ness, Isle of Lewis
Harris Tweed Weaving & KnittingHarris
Hebridean Croft OriginalsLochboisdale, South Uist
Hebridean JewelleryIodar, South Uist
Kenneth Macleod Harris Tweed MillShawbost, Isle of Lewis
Lewis CastleStornoway
Lewis Karting CentreNr. Stornoway, Isle of Lewis
Lewis Loom CentreStornoway, Isle of Lewis
Lochboisdale Tourist Information CentreLochboisdale, South Uist
Lochmaddy Tourist Information CentreLochmaddy, Isle of North Uist
Morven GalleryBarvas, Isle of Lewis
Museum Nan EileanStornoway, Isle of Lewis
Ness Heritage CentreNess, Isle of Lewis
North Shawbost ArtsNorth Shawbost, Isle of Lewis
Rothesay CastleRothesay
Stornoway AirportStornoway, Isle of Lewis
Stornoway Golf ClubStornoway, Isle of Lewis
Stornoway Tourist Information CentreStornoway, Isle of Lewis
Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum & Arts CentreLochmaddy, Isle of North Uist

© UK Tourist Attractions 2008