Things to see and do in and around Portree
Portree is geographically at the centre of the Isle of Skye and because Portree is the island's capital all roads radiate out from it. If you mean to make the most of the things Skye has to offer then the Gardeners cottage at Viewfield is in an ideal location. If you choose to stay on one of Skye's many wings you may find that you are bound to do a lot of driving back and forth every day.
Portree has plenty to offer from; the shops, to boat trips from the harbour, a very well equipped public swimming pool, a local cinema pubs and restaurants. There is nearly always live music on somewhere in the village every day.
In Portree wander through the centre of the village and take a turn around Fancy Hill before going down to Portree's picturesque working quayside. The main industry of Skye is still the fishing and most local boats are involved in landing prawns and lobsters using static gear. Why not buy some prawn tails or some squat lobsters, straight from the boat and bring them home for your tea? The use of static gear (Lobster pots and creels) is one of the most sustainable forms of fishing. Portree's shops cater not only for a local trade; there are many high quality tourist related shops as well.
The climbers in the family are able to go to the Cuillins easily, leaving behind those who want to go out in a boat to see the Sea Eagles or spend an easy day in Portree with a clear conscience. No-one need feel left out from any activity.
Skye is a big island and there are many wonderful day trips that can be made. It is a walkers paradise and there are many other activities to suit all tastes. These include; fly-fishing, sea fishing, sailing, kayaking, climbing, visiting castles, museums, art galleries potteries and much more besides.
No trip to Skye would be complete without a trip around the North end of the island (the Troternish Peninsula) to look at the Old Man of Storr. There are wonderful places to take short walks; our children always enjoyed the Hydro Power station at the Storr Lochs with its fossil beach, the Falls at Lealt, the Kilt Rock and the beach at Staffin Bay.
There are favourite picnic places within easy reach of Portree, at the Aird in Braes, the Camus Bhan and in the right weather there are splendid wild places to swim.
At least a day should be spent in the west of the island visiting Dunvegan Castle and Gardens touring the castle gardens and going out to see the seals. The beach at Glenbrittle in the heart of the Cuillin mountain is not to be missed either if you have small children.
A day trip to Elgol and then a boat trip to Lock Coruisk is not to be missed and follows a long tradition started in the early Victorian era.
Skye has an extraordinary wide variety of landscapes and geology from the wildness of the Troternish peninsula in the north to the gentle wooded countryside around Armadale in the south.
You will find links to a number of my favourite Isle of Skye web sites on our links page and in the cottage you will find a booklet with some of our favourite itineraries from all-day expeditions to short afternoon walks and special picnic places.
Many of the pictures on this website were taken in the depths of winter when if you are lucky you may be able to enjoy some marvellous weather. This is the time of year I am able to go walking and a time of year I particularly enjoy for the clarity of the light and the spectacular views. There are no midges, it is not too warm or damp, and you can often see for over 100 miles. Skye on the whole has a mild climate and it is often almost balmy during the winter. Of course you could pick the wrong week but my view is that you can still go out and enjoy a walk even on a day that is less than perfect, if you have good company a warm fire, a bath and a whisky to look forward to as a reward for your adventure. A simple rule of thumb is that if the weather is not so good in the south east of the UK the chances are that it is marvellous in the North West.