The Best Isle of Skye Itinerary Scotland by

Best Isle of Skye Itinerary

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Planning an Isle of Skye Itinerary for a Scotland vacation is a big task. The mountainous island is the largest of the Inner Hebrides and Isle of Skye attractions dot the magnificent and otherworldly landscapes from one end to the other.

Travelers planning a vacation to Isle of Skye need to determine what sights to see, what hikes to trek and which tours to join. It takes some effort to create the best Isle of Skye Itinerary, but our outlined trip plan will help point you in the right direction.

From iconic rock formations to ancient dinosaur footprints to the most awesome viewpoints, we are highlighting a perfect Isle of Skye trip plan!


Isle of Skye Itinerary FAQs

Before we dive into our day-by-day Itinerary for Skye, Scotland, we will answer a few of the frequently asked questions about traveling to Skye.


How Many Days in Isle of Skye, Scotland?

Travelers planning to visit Skye on vacation will need to determine a timeframe for their trip. We think that it is best to spend at least 3 days on Isle of Skye, Scotland.

On a 3 day trip to Isle of Skye, visitors have enough time to truly enjoy the beauty of the island, without feeling too rushed.

That said, because many people plan on visiting Isle of Skye in two days and others plan to stay longer, we share alternate itineraries later in the article.


Can I Visit Skye in a Day?

Many Scotland visitors wonder if it is possible to take a day trip to Skye…and in most cases it is not, but that will depend on where you are traveling from.

For example, visiting the Isle of Skye from Edinburgh and Glasgow requires a 5-plus-hour one-way drive. On the other hand, Skye is only a 2.5-hour drive from Inverness, making it possible to see Isle of Skye in one day (but still not ideal).

Before you start planning a 1 Day Isle of Skye trip, make sure getting there won’t take longer than actually being there!

We will outline a One Day Itinerary Isle of Skye, Scotland in the Alternate Itineraries section to help travelers with limited time make the most of their trip.  


Is a Car Necessary for Touring Isle of Skye?

Whether or not to rent a car on Skye Island, Scotland is a big decision for many travelers – it certainly was for us! There are numerous benefits to having a car – including freedom and flexibility. However, the downsides – like driving on the left, maneuvering on single track roads and over-crowded parking lots – were enough of a deterrent to convince us that we did not need a car for our trip to Skye.

Instead, we opted to tour Isle of Skye by public bus and joined one organized outing. We were able to link up Skye buses so that we could see multiple attractions in a single day. That said, using buses did limit our Isle of Skye route.

Therefore, we are outlining an Isle of Skye Driving Itinerary – with tips for each day regarding how to plan your trip using public transport.

Do note, however, that this is not necessarily an Isle of Skye Road Trip Itinerary, as we recommend staying in Portree and using the town as a base. (We share advice on where to stay in Isle of Skye later in the article under our Skye Travel Tips section.)


Is this an Isle of Skye Hiking Itinerary?

Hiking is one of the top activities on Isle of Skye – and our 3-Day Itinerary for Skye features a few of the best treks on the island. To be honest, short hikes are required to see several of the most beautiful parts of the island and longer treks reveal even more stunning scenery.

Walking in Isle of Skye requires some level of physical fitness. The treks that we outline are rated easy to moderate (typically due to loose rocks, crowds, unmarked trails and overall length).

There are certainly more difficult hikes than the ones we feature in our Itinerary for Skye.

Active explorers who are interested in the challenging Skye hiking trails might want to join a guided multi-day trek. We share details on those a bit later, as well.


What Sights are Featured in this Skye Island Itinerary?

For this 3 Days in Isle of Skye Itinerary, we feature the top sights and attractions, as well as activities – like hiking and a boat trip. We tidy it all up in an easy-to-follow day-by-day trip plan. Plus, we share tips on what to eat during your trip.

That all said, there are Isle of Skye sights that we had to leave out of this trip plan – simply because there is so much to see that it is nearly impossible to do it all in 3 days.

Travelers interested in additional activities should use our guide of Things To Do in Isle of Skye for more ideas.


Planning an Isle of Skye Vacation

Tips on Planning an Isle of Skye Vacation, Scotland

We provide details about the entire Skye Island trip planning process to help make it as easy as possible. In addition to the daily agenda, we also share travel tips regarding how to get there, where to stay and what to pack for visiting Isle of Skye in 3 days.

For many travelers, a vacation to Isle of Skye is part of a longer Scotland trip – and we have heaps of advice on what to see and do in Scotland!

Those visiting Scotland from overseas can also use our Guide to Planning a European Vacation for useful tips about traveling to Europe from abroad. 


Organizing Your Isle of Skye, Scotland Itinerary

As you begin your Isle of Skye trip planning, staying organized is key! We recommend using a vacation planner – like our Printable Travel Planner – to stay on top of all the details!

Travel Planner Printables by



View of the Old Man of Storr on Isle of Skye, Scotland

Our outlined Isle of Skye 3 Day Itinerary details how to best spend 3 days on the Misty Isle – with or without a car.

Save, Pin or Bookmark this Isle of Skye Travel Guide to plan your vacation to Scotland!


Day 1: Trotternish Loop Skye

Explore the Trotternish Loop Skye, Scotland, UK

On the first day of your Isle of Skye, Scotland Itinerary, discover the area’s most impressive landscapes located on the Trotternish Peninsula (with plenty of options for hiking).


Old Man of Storr

Clear view of Old Man Storr, Isle of Skye, Scotland

One of the Trotternish Loop Isle of Skye must see sights, Old Man of Storr is the island’s most recognizable rock formation. The tall and skinny 164-foot pinnacle balances on one end, as if might topple over at any moment.


Hike Old Man of Storr

That the Hike to Old Man of Storr, Skye, Scotland

A moderate hike winds its way up from the parking lot to a grassy perch that overlooks that fascinating rocky outcrop. Visitors typically spend about 2 hours in total hiking the trail to Old Man of Storr and taking in the views.


View Old Man of Storr

View from Old Man Storr Hike, Skye, Scotland, UK

Travelers not inclined to hike up to Old Man can still take in the sight from various points along the A855. One of the best spots along the road is the pull-off at Loch Leathan.


See: Lealt Falls

Viewing Lealt Falls, Isle of Skye in Scotland

There are many (many, many) waterfalls on Isle of Skye – but Lealt Falls is one of the most impressive. The multi-tiered waterfall drops 300 feet in total and there are two fantastic viewing points – plus a narrow trail that descends below the lower falls to the shore.

Most travelers spend about 15 minutes at Lealt Falls, but those who hike down the zig-zag track should plan 45 minutes to an hour.


Discover: Dinosaur Prints at Brother’s Point

Find the Dinosaur Prints at Brother’s Point, Isle of Skye, Scotland

One of the many cool things on Isle of Skye are the footprints left by dinosaurs 170 million years ago. The best dinosaur footprints can be found at Brother’s Point (called Rubhan am Brathairean in Gaelic), where there are a cluster of 7 prints on the flat, black rock.

Find these Rocks with dinosaur prints, Brothers Point, Isle of Skye

The prints are near the water’s edge (depending on tides) at the end of the long, sloping trail. As they are not marked, it is best to have an idea of what to look. Plan to spend about 45 minutes to an hour walking to and visiting the site.


Hike To Brother’s Point

View of the Hike To Brother's Point, Isle of Skye, Scotland

From the dino footprints, active travelers can embark on a fun hike along the coast to Brother’s Point headland. The walk across the unmarked bluff is gorgeous (and boggy in places) and views from the point are spectacular! Allow an additional 1 hour to hike to the headland of Brother’s Point.


Glimpse: Kilt Rock and Mealt Falls

Kilt Rock View from Brother's Point, Isle of Skye, Scotland

Kilt Rock is a basalt-column cliff that has an uncanny likeness to the pleats of a Scottish kilt. When lit just right by the sun, even the coloring of the cliffside resembles a tartan plaid.

Flowing from the cliff’s ledge is the marvelous Mealt Falls. The waterfall plunges 180 feet down to the sea in one, long, misty stream.

The Kilt Rock Viewing Platform offers the best up-close view of the unique formations and waterfall. That said, they can both be seen from a distance – even from Brother’s Point. Visitors who stop at the Kilt Rock and Mealt Falls Viewpoint typically spend less than 15 minutes taking in the view.


Dine: Lunch in Staffin

Spot the Isle of Skye Sheep, Scotland

Staffin is a quaint township of little white houses and grazing sheep that sits between the sea and The Quiraing – and it’s home to a few cafes where travelers can stop for a bite to eat.

The Hungry Gull is a casual eatery right on the main road that serves an all-day brunch and daily specials. At nearby Columba 1400, they offer affordable toasties, salads and soups.

Bear in mind that sitting down for lunch can eat up a big part of your day (especially with the summer crowds). Plan on spending at least an hour at lunch. Travelers who would rather eat on the go should pack a picnic lunch. Affordable items are available at the Portree Co-Op grocery store.


Walk: The Quiraing

View looking up at The Quiraing on Skye, Scotland

Millions of years of volcanoes, erosion and landslips have resulted in one of the most extraordinary and breathtaking landscapes on the Isle of Skye: The Quiraing. Taking in the panorama of the vast and distinctive scenery is a must for your Isle of Skye itinerary!

The Quiraing Lookout offers a sublime vista of the sloping, rock-strewn escarpment – but the views are even better from the looping trail.

View of the Quiraing Walk, Isle of Skye Scotland

The complete Quiraing Walk is a 4.2-mile adventure and will take between 2 to 3 hours to complete from the Quiraing car park. That said, travelers can walk just 30 minutes of the challenging trail (1 hour round trip) to The Needle and The Prison rock formations. Another route into The Quiraing is via the Flodigarry Hike Car Park on A855; the 1.5-mile trail connects to The Quiraing Loop north of The Prison and offers wonderful views as well as some solitude.


Stop: Duntulm Castle and Rubha Hunish

View of Duntulm Castle, Isle of Skye, Scotland

The Duntulm Castle ruins sit on a promontory above the sea on the northern end of the Trotternish Peninsula. The small castle dates to the 14th century and was the seat of Clan MacDonald during the 17th century. Visitors are free to roam the crumbling remains.


Rubha Hunish Hike

Go on the Rubha Hunish Hike, Isle of Skye, Scotland

Travelers who still have enough energy left in their legs (and daylight left in the day) can set off on a hike to Rubha Hunish – the most northern point of Isle of Skye. The trek can be completed as a loop along the shoreline east of Duntulm Castle or as an out-and-back hike from the car park (marked by a red telephone booth along A855).

Allow about 2 hours in total to get to the northern Skye viewpoint and an extra hour to scramble down to the point and back up.


Frolic: The Fairy Glen

View of The Fairy Glen, Isle of Skye, Scotland

Plucked right from the pages of a storybook, The Fairy Glen is a must-see place on your 3-Day Itinerary for Skye, Scotland.

With grassy knolls and rocky buttes, the enchanting landscape is fabled to be the home of Skye fairies – and it’s the perfect place to frolic about. Footpaths weave around and over the grass-covered hills (as do the local farmer’s sheep).

Visitors typically spend about an hour in the mystical sanctuary.


Dinner and Drinks: The Isles Inn Pub

End your first day in Isle of Skye in a Portree pub, The Isles Inn. The pub serves up Scottish classics, like Haggis, Neeps and Tatties, Cullen Skink, fresh seafood and Sticky Toffee Pudding – along with Skye craft beer and wee drams of Scottish whisky.


Tips for Day 1 Trotternish Loop Without a Car

View of the Rubha Hunish Trail, Skye, Scotland

Travelers using public buses on Isle of Skye will need to pick and choose what to see on the Trotternish Peninsula. The limited number of daily buses makes it impossible to stop at all the sights along the route. Since the schedule also varies by day and season, you’ll have to choose what sights look the most appealing to you when you visit Skye.

That said, our ideal One Day Isle of Skye Trotternish Loop by Public Bus 57A would include making two stops for hikes. First, visit Brother’s Point to find the dino prints and hike out to the point. Then, hop on the next bus, stopping at the Flodigarry Hike Car Park to make the out-and-back trek to The Quiraing. Lastly, catch the 57A going the same direction and enjoy the views as you complete the loop back to Portree.

Note that with a very early start (7am bus), it would be possible to squeeze in one more stop or hike along the route. In that case, we would recommend adding either Old Man of Storr or Rubha Hunish.


Day 2: Sightseeing Isle of Skye

View of Neist Point Lighthouse, Isle of Skye, Scotland

Spend the second day of your Isle of Skye 3 Days Itinerary sightseeing more of the dramatic landscapes and iconic attractions.


Explore: Dunvegan Castle

Ranking as the oldest continuously inhabited castle in Scotland, Dunvegan Castle is one of the top Isle of Skye destinations. Held by the MacLeod Clan for the past 800 years, the castle has a well-defined place in the history of Skye.

Ticketed entry includes visiting castle as well as the spacious and grandiose gardens. Upgraded tickets include a boat trip on Loch Dunvegan, where seals and sea birds are often spotted.  

Guests typically spend 2-3 hours at Dunvegan Castle – possibly longer if also taking the boat trip.


View: Neist Point Lighthouse

The Neist Point Lighthouse View on Isle of Skye, Scotland

A top attraction for your 3-Day Skye Itinerary, Neist Point Lighthouse is an incredible landmark. Built in 1909, the yellow Neist Point Lighthouse stands on a mesmerizing 140-foot-tall cliff.

A steep path leads down to the lighthouse and the vantage point is ideal for spotting sea life, like dolphins, whales and sharks.

Additionally, the open area west of the parking lot along the elevated coast, provides sensational views over the cape, encompassing both the lighthouse and the cliffs.

We recommend spending about an hour at the lighthouse (maybe longer if setting off on both treks).


Eat: Café Lunch in Glendale

For lunch, stop at the delightful Café Lephin. The menu features simple sandwiches, tasty soups and delicious cakes. The Haggis Panini with onion chutney and cheddar is unique and scrumptious!

If you would rather pick up something to go, pop into the old-fashioned Glendale General Store across the street from Lephin Café.


Visit: Dun Beag Broch

Dun Beag Broch is an ancient round, stone tower that dates to the Iron Age. Built by the Picts more than 2,000 year ago, the Dun Beag Broch is little more than ruins – but it is still a fascinating site for history buffs. Plus, the views of Skye, Loch Bracadale and the Cuillin Mountains are exceptional!

Visitors need less than an hour to visit Dun Beag Broch.


Taste: Talisker Distillery

Talisker Distillery Whisky, Isle of Skye, Scotland

Next up on your Isle of Skye 3 Day Itinerary is the famous Talisker Whisky Distillery. Opened in 1830, Talisker is the oldest distillery on Skye and produces excellent single malt scotch whiskies.

Visitors can join a Talisker Isle of Skye Distillery Tour, Tasting Experience or a special Cask Draw Tour. That said, tours are not necessary; visitors are welcome to sample whisky at the bar or make a purchase at the gift shop.

Guests joining a tour will likely spend about 1.5 hours at Talisker. Otherwise, plan on a 30-minute visit.


Wander: Fairy Pools

View of the Fairy Pools, Isle of Skye in Scotland

A succession of streaming waterfalls among the mighty Cuillin Mountains, the picturesque Fairy Pools are a gorgeous sight – and a must for your Three Days on Isle of Skye Itinerary.

The water flows down the mountains, gathering into turquoise pools before slipping downstream and spilling into subsequent rocky basins. A gravel path traces the flowing stream, making it easy for visitors to see the Fairy Pools, which are sensational in the sunlight and magical in the mist.

Go Swimming at Fairy Pools, Isle of Skye, Scotland, UK

Swimming is permitted in the Fairy Pools, but be aware that the water is cold and moves swiftly in places – and the pesky midges can make sitting in one place nearly unbearable.

Most guests spend about 1.5 – 2 hours at the Skye Fairy Pools.


Sightsee: Portree

Go Sightsee in Portree, Isle of Skye, Scotland, UK

Portree is the largest town on Isle of Skye and serves as the capital. It’s a busy tourist hub with shops, restaurants, bars and hotels. Plus, Portree hosts a handful of sights that are worth seeing during your trip to Skye.

Best View of the Painted Houses, Portree Harbor, Skye, Scotland

The pastel-painted houses of the Portree Harbor are one of the most popular attractions – but, if time allows, we recommend setting off for a short hike. The Scorrybreac Trail follows the coastline before ascending into a forest, while the pleasant Meall Portree Walkway wraps around The Lump headland offering grand vistas.

Read all of our Things To Do in Portree for more sightseeing ideas.

Based on interests, daylight and energy level, visitors could spend anywhere from 30 minutes to 4 hours exploring Portree.


Dinner and Drinks: Fine Dining in Portree

For dinner on your second night in Isle of Skye, make a reservation at one of the fine dining restaurants in Portree.

The View Restaurant at Cuillin Hills Hotel, which boasts one of the best views in town, offers a menu of exceptional locally sourced food.

Other options are the Michelin mentioned Scorrybreac Restaurant (a small 8-table establishment that features a tasting menu of local delicacies) and Sea Breezes (a harborside space specializing in locally caught seafood).

It is essential to make reservations at nearly all Skye restaurants in advance – especially during the busy summer season.


Tips for Day 2 Sightseeing Without a Car: Isle of Skye Tour

Book a Fairy Pool Tour on Isle of Skye, Scotland

Getting to some of the far-flung places on Isle of Skye without a car can be trying. While the local buses serve most attractions (except for the lighthouse), it is difficult to line up consecutive buses to see more than one place.

Rather than relying on buses for Day 2 of your Isle of Skye Travel Itinerary, we recommend booking a locally guided tour. We are sharing 3 tours on Skye that we think are good options for seeing the best of the island.

Each of these tours visit different sights, but most include photo stops for Old Man of Storr, Kilt Rock and The Quiraing – so consider eliminating those sights from your Day 1 sightseeing when you are using public buses.

Note: A tour is a good option for travelers visiting Isle of Skye with a car, too! Not only does it eliminate a day of stressful driving, but the local guides share tips, insight and history of the island.


Isle of Skye 1 Day Tour with Real Scottish Journeys

We opted to join a 1 Day Skye Tour with Real Scottish Journeys – and loved it! The tour includes photo stops at top attractions, with time for exploration at Neist Point, The Fairy Glen and Fairy Pools. Plus, the guides are knowledgeable, engaging and humorous. Read the reviews!


Skye Sightseeing Tour

Participants on the Sightseeing Tour in Skye set out for a relaxing day of discovering the best sights of the island. Ideal for visitors who want to sit back and take in the scenery, the tour features ample photo ops along the route. Book it here!


Isle of Skye Tour with Whisky

Visitors keen on tasting whisky straight from the source can join this full day Isle of Skye tour from Portree that features top Skye attractions – including a visit to Talisker Distillery. Get the details!


Day 3: Raasay and Sligachan

Beautiful view of the Isle of Raasay, Scotland

On the final day of your 3 Day Skye Itinerary embark on one of the best day trips from Skye to the Isle of Raasay and then savor the beauty of the Cuillin Mountain Range from Sligachan.


Ferry: Isle of Raasay

View of the Ferry from Sconser to Raasay, Scotland

The CalMac Isle of Skye Ferry departs from Sconser Pier and makes the half hour scenic journey to Isle of Raasay. The ferry to Raasay welcomes foot passengers, cyclists and can accommodate a limited number of vehicles, too.

Utilizing the ferry is a fun (and inexpensive) way to get out on the water – and the only way to travel to Raasay Island. We recommend checking ferry schedules ahead of time.

Views of Isle of Skye on the Ferry to Isle of Raasay, Scotland

Visitors could spend an hour simply riding back and forth between the two islands, taking in the phenomenal views from the open-air seats on the upper deck. However, we think it is certainly worth sticking around Raasay for at least a few hours!


Experience: Raasay Sights

Wonderful Isle of Raasay Sights, Scotland

Characterized by rustic charm, marked by historical remnants and featuring a modern distillery, Raasay Island is a delightful place to spend a few hours exploring.

Top attractions are the shoreline trails that offer epic views across the bay to Isle of Skye – but visitors can also rent equipment for outdoor adventures (like bikes and kayaks) from Raasay House. Additionally, the Isle of Raasay Distillery is a fun place to stop for a taste of the gin and whisky produced on site.

Travelers from Skye typically spend between 2 to 4 hours on Raasay.


Picnic: Lunch with a View

Find an Amazing View, Isle of Raasay, Scotland

While Raasay House and the Distillery offer lunch menus, we opted to enjoy a picnic with an unsurpassed view of Isle of Skye.

Gather your supplies before setting sail for Raasay – and then find a spot atop the promontory next to the Raasay Ferry Port to eat while enjoying the staggering views.

Alternatively, grab something for takeaway at The Noost (next to the Sconser Ferry Port), before you depart or when you return.


Snap: Photos of Highland Coos

Take photos of the Highland Scotland Cows

Highland Cows – or coos, as they are affectionately called – are a special breed of cattle in Scotland. With long hair and pointy horns, the cows are ‘udderly’ adorable (lame pun, we know!).

While these popular Scottish cows can be found in pastures around the country – and particularly in the Highlands – they are few are far between on the Isle of Skye. The best place to see a coo up close is at Hector’s Highland Cows Farm, right off of A87 by Sconser. 

We could spend hours watching the coos – but most visitors spend less than a half hour snapping photos of the fluffy cows.


Trek: Sligachan Trails

View of the Sligachan Old Bridge, Isle of Skye, Scotland

The small settlement of Sligachan is a gateway to the Cuillin Mountains. Multiple trails extend south from the village, leading to waterfalls, lochs and mountaintops.

While the trails in their entirety are rated difficult, trekkers can opt to hike just a short distance along the footpaths for incredible vantage points over Skye.

A popular trail from Sligachan takes hikers five miles to the Fairy Pools – but the pretty Sligachan Waterfall is just a one-mile trek.

Go Hiking on the Sligachan Trails, Isle of Skye, Scotland

Several footpaths also follow the River Sligachan – and we think it is well worth scampering along the route to find a quiet and peaceful place along the water to relish the panoramic Cuillin Mountain views.

Visitors could spend as little as 15 minutes or as much as 5 hours hiking the trails in Sligachan. The paths are often wet and muddy, so appropriate footwear is required.


Dinner and Drinks: Seumas’ Bar in Sligachan

Whisky at Seumas’ Bar in Sligachan, Isle of Skye, Scotland

End your last day in Skye, Scotland at Seumas’ Bar for dinner and drinks. Enjoy the jovial atmosphere and feast on hearty beef burgers or Scottish classics – like fish and chips or venison.

The bar at Seumas’ is stocked with more than 400 Scottish whiskies (flights are available for tastings), as well as local craft beer from the Cuillin Brewery next door.


Tips for Day 3 in Skye Without a Car

It is fairly easy to organize sightseeing for Day 3 without a car on Isle of Skye. Buses from Portree can be used to get to the Raasay ferries – and a car is not necessary once on Isle of Raasay.

Buses can also be used to get between Sconser and Sligachan – and then back to Portree. In fact, both CityLink and Stagecoach run buses along A87, so there are several opportunities to catch a ride. 

That all said, visitors without a car will likely need to skip seeing the hairy coos at Hector’s Farm. It is difficult to time out such a short visit using buses – and walking along the busy roadway is not recommended. It could, however, be an opportunity to try your luck at hitchhiking on Skye!


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Itinerary for Isle of Skye MAP

Use this link to Google for an online version of our Isle of Skye, Scotland Map that is marked with the attractions included in our 3 Day Skye Itinerary.

Each day’s adventures are designated by color: Day 1 is Blue; 2 is Purple; 3 is Green.

Map of Isle of Skye Itinerary Attractions by


More Isle of Skye Itineraries

Tips for Isle of Skye Itineraries, Scotland

We’ve outlined our plan for how to spend 3 days in Isle of Skye, Scotland – but what if you have more (or less) time to visit Skye? To help travelers with alternate timeframes, we have suggested Skye itineraries for one to five days.


Isle of Skye in a Day

Planning an Isle of Skye 1 Day Itinerary is quite arduous…but not impossible. And, if 1 day in Isle of Skye is all that you have, we suggest making the absolute most of it!


Isle of Skye Itinerary 1 Day Outline

An ideal way to create the Best Isle of Skye One Day Itinerary is to simply follow our advice for Day 1 of our 3 Day Trip Plan for Skye. The Trotternish Peninsula is home to the most dramatic landscapes and best hikes – and the looping road makes them relatively easy to access.

In addition to what we outline on Day 1, ambitious travelers can squeeze in sights from Day 3 at Sligachan. Short treks along Sligachan River, dining at Seumas’ Bar or seeing the coos at nearby Hector’s are all just of the main road on and off of Skye, A87.

Another way to plan a one day trip to Skye is to leave all the planning to a professional and join an organized tour.


Isle of Skye Itinerary 2 Days

With 2 days in Isle of Skye, visitors can see many of the top sights. That said, travelers will want to meticulously plan their 2-Day Isle of Skye Itinerary in order to make the most of their time.


Isle of Skye 2 Day Itinerary Suggestion

To create the Best 2-Day Itinerary Isle of Skye, use the tips from Days 1 and 2 of our detailed 3-Day Skye Trip Plan. As recommended above, squeeze the sights in Sligachan into the first day and skip visiting Raasay.


2-Day Itinerary Skye No Car

If you’re visiting Isle of Skye in 2 days without a car, you can still see quite a lot! On Day 1, join an organized Skye Island Tour to view the best landscapes and see the top sights. Then, on Day 2, use public transit to go hiking or take the ferry to Isle of Raasay.


Alternate Isle of Skye Itinerary 3 Days

We’ve written what we believe is the ideal 3 Days Isle of Skye Itinerary, but we have an alternate suggestion for those with different interests.

Rather than follow our 3-Day Itinerary for Isle of Skye, head south to the Sleat Peninsula.

Sleat is known for its vivid green landscapes and offers numerous attractions, hiking opportunities along with less crowds. Top things to see and do are the Armadale Castle, Torabhaig Distillery and Point of Sleat.


Isle of Skye Itinerary 4 Days

Travelers with 4 days in Isle of Skye will be able to explore deeper into the area. We have a couple of suggestions regarding how to spend your time.


Isle of Skye 4 Day Itinerary

To create the Best 4-Day Isle of Skye Itinerary, we recommend spending the last day of your trip on the Sleat Peninsula to see the Armadale Castle, take a tour at Torabhaig Whisky Distillery and hike to Point of Sleat.

With careful planning, those without a car can use the buses to get to both Armadale Castle and the distillery in one day from Portree.

Alternatively, active travelers who skipped some of the hikes on Day 1 of our original 3-Day Travel Plan for Skye could tackle more trails on the Trotternish Peninsula.


Isle of Skye Itinerary 5 Days

Spending 5 days on Isle of Skye, Scotland? Fantastic – there is plenty more to see and do! Our top recommendation for your final day is to hop aboard a Skye boat trip – or head to the mainland to take in nearby sights.


Isle of Skye 5 Day Itinerary

To plan the Best 5-Day Isle of Skye Itinerary, follow all the above advice – then take a boat ride or day trip (or both) on the final day.

Boat trips from Isle of Skye depart multiple times a day from Portree and Elgol. The wildlife boat trips provide the opportunity to spot dolphins, whales, seals and sea eagles – all while taking in the magnificent Isle of Skye coastline.

Depending on the rest of your plans for Scotland, consider driving to the mainland to see some of the popular sights near Skye – like Eilean Donan Castle and the picture-perfect Village of Plockton


Multiday and Day Trip Bus Tours to Isle of Skye

Planning Isle of Skye Treks, Scotland

Our outlined adventures are ideal for travelers who like to plan their own itineraries. However, visitors can also join guide-led tours to Isle of Skye, Scotland.


Multiday Isle of Skye Hiking Tour

Active travelers interested in ‘Bagging a Munro’ (aka climbing a 3,000-foot mountain) can join a 4-day guided hiking adventure through the Cuillin Mountains. Get the details!

Visitors can also plan their own hikes on Isle of Skye by using the helpful Walk Highlands website.


Isle of Skye Day Trip from Inverness

Scottish Highlands tourists based in Inverness can plan their own day trip to Isle of Skye…or join one of the highly-rated excursions. On this tour participants get to see the vast landscapes of the Highlands, visit Eilean Donan Castle and see top sights on the Trotternish Peninsula.


3 Day Isle of Skye Tour from Edinburgh or Glasgow

As previously mentioned, it is nearly impossible to make a day trip from Glasgow or Edinburgh to Isle of Skye. However, there is an Isle of Skye 3 Day Tour available from both cities.


Edinburgh to Isle of Skye Itinerary

The 3-day, small-group tours from Edinburgh – like this one – include accommodation and top sights in the Scottish Highlands – including a full-day guided tour of Isle of Skye.


Glasgow to Isle of Skye Itinerary

On a small-group tour from Glasgow (such as this one that includes accommodations and breakfast), participants travel to the Scottish Highlands to see the famous Loch Ness and Eilean Donan Castle – plus a full day of sightseeing on Isle of Skye. 


Isle of Skye Tips

Isle of Skye Tips for Travel to Scotland and the best views of Skye

Now that you are well on the way to planning your perfect 3-Day Isle of Skye Itinerary, we have a few final wee bits of advice.


Tips for Restaurants on Isle of Skye

During your 3-Day Vacation to Isle of Skye, we have a few tips that might make dining on the island a bit more enjoyable.

Always Check Opening Hours. Times vary by day and season at restaurants on Skye. Before making plans to eat somewhere, make sure they will be open.

Make Reservations. Skye gets incredibly busy in the summer season – and without reservations you may end up eating a supermarket sandwich for dinner. Nearly all restaurants on Skye take reservations; even the wildly popular Pizza in the Skye food truck takes pre-orders! 

Picnic Lunch. If you’re truly trying to get in as much activities as possible, skip eating at restaurants for lunch. Instead of planning where to eat lunch on your Isle of Skye 3 Days Itinerary, eat big breakfasts and stock up on snacks and picnic lunches.


Getting to Isle of Skye, Scotland

Skye can be reached by car, ferry or bus.

Driving. There are ferries to Skye from Mallaig and Glenelg, but the bridge from Kyle of Lochalsh is usually best for visitors traveling by car.

Buses. Direct buses operated by CityLink run from Inverness and Glasgow to Skye, and with one connection from Edinburgh.

Trains and Planes. There are no trains or commercial flights to Isle of Skye. The closest airports are in Inverness, Glasgow and Edinburgh (use our guide to Finding the Best Flight Deals). Travelers can opt to ride part of the way to Skye on a train – but will need to transfer to a bus in Fort William or Kyle of Lochalsh to continue on to Skye.


Getting Around Isle of Skye

View of the road for an Isle of Skye Itinerary, Scotland

Travelers can self-drive or use public buses to get around Isle of Skye.


Tips for Driving on Isle of Skye

Most will opt to use a car to get around the island – and we have a few tips for those who decide to drive.

Review the Rules. Driving on Skye can get complicated, due to the numerous single lane roads and heavy traffic. Understand how to use the lay-bys (passing areas) and recognize signage for priority traffic. Additionally, be ready to pay for parking, as a ticket is required for many of the car parks.

Get in the Left Side Mindset. Foreign travelers need to be comfortable driving on the left side of the road. It can be a big adjustment!

Be Patient. Summertime crowds can clog roads and parking lots. Be patient when driving and when searching for a parking space.

Rent a Car on Skye. Travelers who only want a car to explore one or two days can rent a car on Isle of Skye (rather than for the entire vacation). Before booking, read our hacks for getting the Best Car Rental Rates.


Tips for Riding Buses on Isle of Skye

Those (like us!) who want to forego worrying about driving a car on Isle of Skye can use the public buses – but there are a few things to consider before deciding to go car-free.

Limited Schedules. While Skye has numerous bus routes, the actual number of daily buses is quite constrained. It is best to have a clear understanding of the bus schedules when planning your Skye trip itinerary without a car, as they vary by season and day of week.

Paying for your Ride. All tickets are purchased from the driver – and can be paid with a contactless card or with cash. In most cases, it is monetarily beneficial to purchase the Day Rider Ticket.

Know Where You Want To Go. The drivers are generally helpful in getting you where you want to go…but they are not travel guides! Know exactly where you’re going and they will do their best to drop you off at the closest point.


Accommodations on Isle of Skye

View Restaurant at the Cuillin Hills Hotel, Portree, Scotland

Visitors have many options when it comes to where to stay on Isle of Skye, Scotland. Hotels, guesthouses, self-catering apartments and camping are all options.


Tips for Where To Stay in Skye

Stay in Portree. We think that Portree makes the best base for Skye visitors. Not only is it centrally located, but it offers the most dining options, grocery stores and is the starting point for Skye tours. Travelers without a car in Skye will definitely want to find a place to stay in Portree, as it has the best bus connections.

Stay in a Skye Hotel. While we typically like staying in Airbnb apartments, on a 3 day trip to Skye, we think it is better to stay in a hotel. In fact, it is ideal to find a hotel in Skye that offers an included breakfast – like the fabulous Cuillin Hills Hotel

Book Early. The best Isle of Skye hotels book up early – and those who wait might unexpectedly find themselves camping. We recommend searching for Skye accommodations about 6 months prior. Start with our Tips for Booking the Best Hotels – and then hop on, like we do!


What To Pack for Isle of Skye

Tips on What To Pack for Isle of Skye Vacation, Scotland, UK

Packing for a trip to Isle of Skye takes a little finesse. It’s more complicated than tossing your favorite vacation outfits into a backpack or suitcase. But, alas, we have some tips! Need a Packing Checklist? Get your FREE Packing Checklist here.


Travel Tips for Isle of Skye: What To Pack

The Right Shoes. Travelers need to pack a good pair of shoes that can be worn on trails and in the rain. While hiking boots might not be necessary for the treks we feature, a good trail shoe or lightweight trainers definitely are.

Weatherproof Apparel. The weather in Isle of Skye is unpredictable at best…and rainy, windy and cold at worst. We recommend packing a good raincoat along with clothing that can be layered and dries quickly.

Insect Repellent. The Scottish Highlands are notorious for midges – the relentless insects that are more than just a little annoying. Pack a bug spray with picaridin to keep the midges, mosquitoes and ticks away.

Travel Camera. The scenic landscapes on Skye are breathtaking – and it’s best to have a real camera to capture the beauty of the island. We use a Canon Rebel with a 18-135mm lens for all our trips.

Trip Insurance. As much as you plan your trip itinerary for Skye, things can go wrong. If you haven’t already purchased travel insurance, check the rates and coverage at World Nomads.

Travel Organizer. Make sure you have all of your necessary documents – from your passport to confirmation of your pre-booked activities. And be sure to pack your Travel Planner, too! 


We Want To Know: What are your best Isle of Skye trip planning tips? Is there anything you would add to our 3-Day Isle of Skye Itinerary? Tell us in the comments! 


Start planning your trip to the UK! Search for the lowest airfares, the best accommodations and fun things to do…then start packing!  Want more travel planning tips? Head over to our Travel Planning Page for more information and tips on traveling – and for country-specific information, take a look at our Travel Guides Page!


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