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#MovingSkyewards: Discover the Isle of Skye

Have you heard the one about the five Danes and three Scots who travelled to the Isle of Skye? If you’re an Instagram user, then you may well have! Here’s the lowdown: five prominent Danish Instagrammers recently met up with their Scottish counterparts in Edinburgh. Their mission? To embark on an unforgettable road trip to the Isle of Skye, capturing spectacular images along the way.

Europcar teamed up with the adventure seekers who, with the help of a couple of vehicles from our prestige car hire range, set off from the Scottish capital. We’ve outlined some of the beauty spots they visited along the way, complete with a selection of their breath-taking photographs. Enjoy!

Meet the team

Image by Fedja Salihbasic
Image by Fedja Salihbasic

 

Our crack team of Instagrammers have all been featured in prominent publications thanks to their photography skills, and together they boast in excess of one million Instagram followers. Hanni Gharib and Thomas Søndergaard were among the party who travelled over from Denmark to meet the likes of Steve Oates and Ruairidh McGlynn. They had all admired each other’s work on Instagram for quite some time, so when the opportunity presented itself they decided to meet up in bonnie Scotland. Having picked up their car hire in Edinburgh, they set off on their journey north…

Eilean Donan Castle

Image by Ruairidh McGlynn
Image by Ruairidh McGlynn

 

Located just ten miles east of the Skye Bridge, Eilean Donan Castle is an essential final pit stop before crossing over to Skye. It’s one of the most photographed landmarks in Scotland: a lovingly restored castle perched on a small island where the waters of no less than three lochs meet.

Stroll across the quaint footbridge and explore the castle grounds for yourself whilst marvelling at the awe-inspiring scenery.

Old Man of Storr

Image by Ruairidh McGlynn
Image by Ruairidh McGlynn

 

Located some six miles north of Skye’s largest town, Portree, the Old Man of Storr is one of the most famous summits on the isle. The ‘Old Man’ in question is a large rock that shoots out of the mountainside, creating one of the most captivating landscapes in the land.

The walk up to the famous rock starts just off the main road between Portree and Staffin, with a round trip from the car park taking just over an hour to complete (depending on how long you spend admiring the views, of course).

From the summit you’ll be able to look over the Isle of Raasay, which is just a short ferry trip away. Here you’ll find gentle hillsides and woodlands, as well as the fabulous Raasay House – a grandiose hotel boasting 22 rooms and an elegant interior befitting its beautiful surroundings.

If you’re in need of some tips for what clothing and equipment to bring along on your Skye adventure, check out Scotland Outdoors for helpful features and advice.

Image by Steve Oates
Image by Steve Oates

 

Kilt Rock and Mealt Waterfall

Image by Steve Oates
Image by Steve Oates

 

Follow the A855 north from the Old Man of Storr for roughly 15 minutes, and keep your eyes peeled for the Kilt Rock Viewpoint turn off towards the end of Loch Mealt. These famous sea cliffs are formed by a unique rock pattern said to resemble that of a kilt, hence the name. The main attraction is the Mealt Waterfall, which plunges 60 meters into the rocky ocean waters below.

Quiraing Mountains

Image by Steve Oates
Image by Steve Oates

 

The majestic Quiraing region is a sight to behold and is an unmissable part of any tour of the island. A single track road weaves its way through the mountains, revealing some truly breath-taking views. Some great panoramas can be enjoyed from the roadside; however, there is no shortage of walking trails for those wishing to stretch their legs. On a clear day you can catch a glimpse of the Outer Hebrides, but don’t despair if the mist creeps in – there’s something quite magical about the effect it has on the landscape.

For a full overview of all the walking routes on offer throughout the island, check out Walk Highlands, where you can download detailed hiking maps straight to your laptop or tablet.

Image by Steve Oates
Image by Steve Oates

 

Neist Point

Image by Steve Oates
Image by Steve Oates

 

Welcome to the edge of the world! Or so it feels as you take in the views from the towering cliffs of Neist Point, where an old lighthouse marks the island’s most westerly point. It’s a bit of a drive to get there, but it’s worth every minute. This is Skye at its rugged best, with dramatic cliff drops, wild seas and mesmerising views.

Driving to the Isle of Skye

Image by Hanni Gharib
Image by Hanni Gharib

 

Whether you’re following the route of our Instagrammers and heading off from Edinburgh, or hitting the road from a different part of the country, there’s plenty to see along the way:

From Edinburgh

Approx. driving time: 5.5 – 6 hours

The drive from Edinburgh will see you cross the iconic Forth Road Bridge as you make your way into the Highlands. As Steve Oates explains, there’s a lot to take in long before you set foot on the Misty Isle:

“The drive north from Edinburgh takes you through some incredible locations, including Glencoe, Fort William and Kyle of Lochalsh with the stunning Eilean Donan Castle, giving many opportunities to stop by the side of road for a quick photograph or, if you prefer, a wander up into the hills for an even more impressive view.”

From Glasgow

Approx. driving time: 5.5 – 6 hours

Travelling from Glasgow gives you the added bonus of driving through the beautiful Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park before reaching Glencoe, Fort William and finally, the Isle of Skye. Once you’ve collected your Glasgow car hire, you’ll pass through some of the country’s finest landscapes, so heed the advice of Hanni Gharib and take your time:

“Our mutual passion for nature and photography made a 5 hour trip into a 12 hour journey. Trying to regulate the amount of stops was hopeless given the breath-taking scenery that unfolded itself around every corner. And having our own vehicles gave us the freedom to take whatever (time-consuming, but visually rewarding) detours we chose along the way.”

Image by Hanni Gharib
Image by Hanni Gharib

 

From Aberdeen

Approx. driving time: 5.5 – 6.5 hours

The scenic drives aren’t exclusively reserved for those travelling from Scotland’s central belt. If you find yourself setting off from the country’s oil capital on the north-eastern coast, then you’re in for a memorable cross-country road trip. Pick up your Aberdeen car hire and follow the road north via Elgin and Inverness, or cut through the northern section of the Cairngorms National Park. Alternatively, head south on the A90 and link up with the A9 road if you wish to include Glencoe on your journey.

So there you have it – a snapshot of some of the fantastic experiences that await visitors to the Isle of Skye. But don’t take our word for it – here are some closing thoughts from our Danish and Scottish explorers:

Steve Oates: “Driving around Skye is an incredible experience and one that already has us planning to go back again in order to explore some of the locations further.”

Hanni Gharib: “I remember what I thought to myself upon departing Skye the last time I was here: I’ve got to come back soon! This time round was no different.”

Image by Ruairidh McGlynn
Image by Ruairidh McGlynn

 

Check out more photos of the trip here or by clicking on the images below:

 

Thirsty for more? Keep up with the rest of the travelling party’s latest adventures via Instagram:

Fedja Salihbasic
Maria Fynsk Norup
Sidsel Hartlev
James Wright

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