Skye Shepherd Huts
Skye Shepherd Huts, 1 Heaste, By Broadford, Isle of Skye IV49 9BN
It only seems fair that sometimes, to discover a country’s most breathtaking scenery, you’re required to trek right to its remote, outer edge, where turbulent seas and moody skies mould masterpieces of geology. This is certainly true of Skye, an alluring, wing shaped island on Scotland’s western coast. Its multitude of feathery peninsulas are fronted by Atlantic battered cliffs and a thousand sheltered bays, while inland, dramatic mountain ranges rise like jagged teeth from the boggy peat moors below. It’s the sort of place that reminds you just how beautiful, barren and wild the natural world can be... as well as a handy reminder that you should go on holiday more often!
Bedded down within this landscape, Skye Shepherd Huts is an effortlessly beautiful glamping site that sits subtly among the surroundings. The huts are comfortable, quaint and tremendously warm – including a double bed, wood-burning stove and heaps of extra blankets during winter.
The views, as you would expect, are suitably awe-inspiring. To the east, a wild grass-covered moor looks back towards the mountains of Knoydart on the mainland, while those facing south offer shimmering, uninterrupted view of the Isle of Rhum. Sunrises are something of a speciality here. And as for starry nights, you're all but guaranteed to see the Milky Way (cloud permitting) and, occasionally and more unpredictably, the Northern Lights. There’s a truly wonderful sense of isolation here – silence, but for the wildlife, and starry nights that the rest of the UK simply can’t compete with.
There are just two huts on the site in total, a small and manageable number for owner Janet to take care of. She prefers this more small-scale, personal approach – no doubt a trait that’s owed to living in such an unpopulated part of the world where a sense of community still thrives. It means she can offer the full B&B experience, too, arranging a time that’s convenient with you and appearing with a wicker basket bulging with whatever selection of hot goodies you’ve chosen from the menu (be sure to try the porridge with Talkisker whiskey – breakfast of champions!) Janet’s home is really just an extension of the campsite. The shower and toilet room are in the hallway of her house and her BBQ is available for you to use if you want, but somehow it all still feels wonderfully at one, with everything spotlessly clean and well prepared for your arrival. It’s all just a scamper down the white pebble path from your hut.
For outdoor enthusiasts this really is paradise. Walking routes range from easy ambles along the coast, to challenging scrambles among the menacing Cuillin range, while mountain biking and sea kayaking are just beyond your doorstep. Dog-walkers, who like bagging peaks with their pooch, are also in luck – Janet loves dogs and welcomes them just as much as any human (providing them with extra blankets and treats too!) She’ll even offer to dog-sit if you fancy heading out for dinner (there's a surprising array of decent dining destinations in the vicinity). It’s an attitude that springs from her more regular companions on site, the three D’s of Skye Shepherd Huts – dogs, ducks and donkeys. You’ve never really been on holiday until you wake up to one of Janet’s home cooked brekkies and a donkey scratching his ears on the door of your digs – the perfect start to a day spent exploring this most spectacular of settings.
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