Overview for Skye Trail: Across the Isle of Skye
The Skye Trail is an unofficial long distance route across the stunning landscapes of the Isle of Skye. The Isle of Skye attracts walkers from all over the world with its spectacular scenery, fascinating nature and rich history which you will discover on this demanding but inspiring self guided walking holiday. We will provide all luggage transfers and return transfers from the trail to accommodations where needed.
The route covers most of the length of Skye, and passes through the best hiking areas of the island, including the Black and Red Cuillin, the Trotternish Ridge, Loch Coruisk, and Skye’s most northerly point on the wild headland at Rubha Hunish. This walk is a challenging one, and should only be attempted by people with excellent physical fitness who are sufficiently skilled in navigation to tackle some quite long sections of pathless terrain in wild countryside. Our default itinerary goes from south to north, but depending on availability the route can also be completed north to south.
We also recommend that you have some flexibility over the type of lodging (ranging from hostels to guesthouses and more expensive hotels and sometimes even a bunkhouse or a self catering facility) as the Isle of Skye is very remote and there are not many options at certain locations.
If this itinerary is too demanding for you, we recommend to consider our Skye Coast to Coast walking holiday.
Itinerary for Skye Trail: Across the Isle of SkyeGo to top of page
Day 1: Arrive Broadford
Today you arrive in the town of Broadford, reachable from Glasgow by bus (6 hours) or rental car (4 hours). Accommodation in B&Bs, hostels, or hotels.
Day 2: Broadford to Torrin
A warm-up walk including the cliffs of the Suisnish Peninsula, and the abandoned villages of Suisnish and Boreraig – victims of the Highland Clearances, part of Skye’s darker history. You will enjoy some fine views of Bla Bheinn to the north. B&B accommodation in Torrin or transfer back to Broadford, depending on availability.
Walking for the day: 12 miles (19 km)
Day 3: Torrin to Elgol
Today you will start with a walk offering some great views of Bla Bheinn. You will follow a mix of tarmac sections with old footpaths and some good tracks. Further on along the coastal path, you will enjoy great views of Eigg, Rum and Knoydart, another abandoned village, with a finish at the picturesque village of Elgol. B&B accommodation in Elgol or transfer back to Broadford, depending on availability.
Walking for the day: 7.5 miles (12 km)
Day 4: Elgol to Sligachan
Today you will have one of the most scenic walks. Walk above Loch Skavaig to magical Camasunary and on to Glen Sligachan, squeezed between the ‘Red’ and ‘Black’ Cuillin mountains which line either side. Today’s hike traverses the spectacular Cuillin mountains, providing wonderful views of the rugged landscape. Accommodation at Sligachan Hotel or transfer to Portree depending on availability. If staying at Sligachan, soak up some of the mountaineering history, as the hotel was the base for many of the pioneering first ascents of the Cuillin in the 19th century.
Walking for the day: 11.5 miles (18 km)
Day 5: Sligachan to Portree
The start of the walk is along a good coastal path, with a couple of river crossings where your feet might get wet. The latter part of the walk is along a very quiet coastal road, with a finish in Portree, the largest village on Skye. Accommodation in B&Bs, hotels or hostels.
Walking for the day: 7.5 miles (12 km)
Day 6: Portree to The Storr
Today you will enjoy a fabulous clifftop walk. A start from near the centre of Portree soon gives way to spectacular cliffs. Most of the day is spent along the clifftops; all of them give you fabulous views to the Storr to the north, the Cuillin to the south, and the mainland mountains over the sea to the east. Transfer back to Portree for a second night.
Walking for the day: 13 miles (21 km)
Day 7: Trotternish Ridge – The Storr to Flodigarry
After a transfer from Portree, you will start on one of the finest ridge walks in Scotland – but note that this is a very demanding walk with no easy escape routes. You start with an ascent through fantastic rock formations to the Storr (highest point in north Skye), then look forward to a long day of steady ups and downs along the cliff tops. All day you will enjoy fine views to the mainland mountains, and finish close to the rock formations at the Quiraing. Accommodation at hotel, hostel or B&Bs.
Walking for the day: 13 miles (21 km)
Day 8: Flodigarry to Rubha Hunish
A final day of fine coastal walking – a mixture of beach and clifftops, with a few short excursions across the open moors. You may get your feet wet at one of the several river crossings. At the end of the day, an old coastguard hut has one of the best views in Scotland, and guards the route for a scramble onto the headland Rubha Hunish, the northermost point of Skye, and a short distance from the end of the walk near Duntulm Castle. Transfer back to Flodigarry for accommodation.
Walking for the day: 7.5 miles (11 km),
Day 9: Departure
From Flodigarry, Stagecoach run several buses daily to Portree, from where you can take the Cityllink bus south.
Hotels for Skye Trail: Across the Isle of SkyeGo to top of page
Our aim is to always offer accommodations with comfortable en-suite double or twin rooms, but we recommend that you have some flexibility over the type of lodging (ranging from hostels to guesthouses and more expensive hotels and sometimes even a bunkhouse or a self catering facility) as the Isle of Skye is very remote and there are not many options at certain locations. All places have been carefully hand-picked by us and their quality is regularly monitored. We have tried to choose accommodations that offer friendly service, clean and comfortable rooms and local flavour.
Note that hotels are subject to availability. In case a particular hotel from the ones pictured above is fully booked for your desired dates, we will replace it with a hotel of equal or higher value and quality level. We will provide exact accommodation details to you upon booking confirmation.
Each hotel and B&B has been hand-picked to ensure you enjoy the most welcoming, comfortable and value-for-money experience on this route. A warm welcome awaits all walkers and hikers, with hotel owners keen to hear stories of the day’s adventures. Evening meals and packed lunches for the onward journey are available throughout, however, please note that they are NOT included in the holiday package. Breakfasts are included each day.
Travel for Skye Trail: Across the Isle of SkyeGo to top of page
- To Glasgow – There are excellent air, train and bus services, allowing easy access from anywhere in the UK and overseas.
- To Broadford –From Glasgow, several buses run daily to Broadford operated by Citylink, including two which run via Glasgow Airport.
- From Flodigarry – Stagecoach run several buses daily to Portree, from where you can take the Cityllink bus south.
A great website useful specifically for public transport planning within Scotland is Traveline Scotland.
Connecting transfers by public transport (bus) are recommended for this trip, as they are much cheaper compared to private car transfers.
Each walker will be allowed one bag, of up to 20 kg in weight, which will be transferred between accommodations.
Scotland: Country Info
Some funny but useful travel advice on Scotland is available here 🙂
Trip Info for Skye Trail: Across the Isle of SkyeGo to top of page
Difficulty Grade: Strenuous
Th is walk is a challenge, and should only be attempted by people with excellent physical fitness, sufficiently skilled in navigation to tackle some quite long sections of pathless terrain in wild countryside. Some days will be more challenging than others and the terrain will be varied with some rough and rugged footpaths (read more about difficulty grades).
We highly recommend that at least one member of your party is a highly competent map and compass reader. We will provide you with road notes and maps, and you can call our 24/7 local assistance phone number anytime. More detailed info on route navigation will be included in your holiday information pack.
When to Go
This trip is available to commence every day from 01 April till 30 September.
What to Bring
We recommend that you travel as light as possible – airlines might charge you an extra fee, and during ground transfers, the place might be limited. Ideally, you should bring one piece of luggage weighing not more than 20 kg (to be checked in) and a daily pack (15 – 20 l rucksack) for your everyday essentials (snacks, drinking water, camera, etc.). Below is a non-exclusive list of what you should bring to this trip. More detailed info will be included in your holiday information pack. If you need further advice, please contact a reputable outdoor retailer or us.
- Good hiking boots
- Hiking socks
- Several t-shirts (preferably breathable/fast drying)
- Packable waterproof and windproof jacket with hood
- Synthetic mid layer or warm fleece
- Trainers and/or sandals – to relax and wear inside accommodation
- Sunglasses, sunscreen and lip salve
- Hat/Baseball cap
- Personal First Aid kit (wet wipes, flu remedies, stomach remedies)
Included for Skye Trail: Across the Isle of SkyeGo to top of page
- Pre-booked accommodation* as per the itinerary on 8 nights in B&B’s, small hotels and guesthouses
- 8 Breakfasts
- Door-to-door luggage transfers on all walking days
- Transfers from trail to accommodation and return, as indicated on itinerary
- Maps & Road Notes (one set per booking)
- Info on transport and local services
- 24/7 phone assistance by our local office / representative
*Some of the overnight stops on the Skye Trail are in very small villages or hamlets, with very limited accommodation. We can’t guarantee the same type of accommodation at each stop, so we adopt a flexible approach and work with you to get the best type of accommodation to suit you. The price quoted here is based on one night at the Sligachan Hotel and 7 nights in B&Bs. It includes transfers to Portree on night 6 and Flodigarry on night 8. Any other transfers or nights in hotels would cost extra. Similarly, any nights in hostel accommodation will reduce the price. Door to door luggage transfer each day is included in the price.
Options and Extras
- Single-room supplement, where possible (this applies to members of a group who require single-room accommodation)
- Solo traveller supplement (includes single room accommodation)
- Extra nights along the route
Please click the CHECK AVAILABILITY button above to see the price of the holiday and the different options, extras and supplements for your desired dates.
- Airfare and connecting land transfers to start and end point
- Lunches, dinners, drinks & snacks
- Travel insurance
- Personal expenses such as phone calls, extra transfers, tips, etc.
- Entry fees (payable on site)
- Any items not specifically mentioned in the programme above as “Included”