Kyle of Lochalsh is a Village next to
the Skye Bridge, 74 miles northwest of
Fort William, 80 miles
southwest of Inverness.
Kyle of Lochalsh is popular for a
number of Boat
Trips with one having a Glass Bottom,
Museum, for exploring this remote
part of the Scottish Mainland, as a base
for exploring the Isle of Skye, and for
visiting Eilean Ban Island with the home
of Gavin Maxwell, author of Ring of
View a Click on Map for the Area
Attractions and Mountains.
The roads north from Kyle of Lochalsh take
you to the small, remote and extremely scenic
Villages of Applecross 40
miles north, and Torridon 45
miles north, through mountains and over the
2,053ft Bealach na Ba, one of the top driving
roads in Scotland.
Eilean Donan Castle is situated 8
miles east of Kyle of Lochalsh at Glen Shiel,
one of the top Castles to visit in
The Image top is of the road running down
into the Kyle of Lochalsh from the south. The
second image is of the town centre where there
is a visitor centre that gives information on
the Village, Area, and Boat Trips.
The Lochalsh Hotel
has great views across to the Isle of Skye, and
to the Skye Bridge.
The Slip at the Lochalsh Hotel is where the
Ferries used to run across to the Village of
Kyleakin on the Isle of Skye. The Skye Bridge was
completed in 1995, leading to the end of the
The Kyle Line Railway
Museum is situated at the Train Station by
the Pier. The Train Journey between Kyle of
Lochalsh and Dingwall, 15 miles northwest of
Inverness, is popular with tourists, crossing
one of the most remote parts of Scotland.
Atlantis is a Glass Bottomed Boat that
provides boat trips to view Wildlife, and a
World War II Shipwreck. This company also
provides fast RIBs for more exhilarating
Adventure is a smaller boat used for
Wildlife Trips, Fishing, and Diving.
Eilean Ban Island is
on the north side of Kyle of Lochalsh, now with
part of the Skye Bridge built on it. The Island
is popular for Wildlife, and as it was the home
of Gavin Maxwell, author of the book Ring of Bright
Water, about Otters. You have to book tours
of the Island through the Bright Water
Visitor Centre, in the village of Kyleakin,
on the Skye side of the Bridge.
Kyle of Lochalsh History
800s - Vikings began populating the Western
Isles of Scotland including the Isle of Skye.
The Vikings then began brutal raids throughout
the Scottish Mainland.
1200s - Eilean Donan Castle was built
for King Alexander II, 8 miles east of Kyle of
Lochalsh, to try and prevent Viking raids, and
Scottish Clans from feuding amongst
1200s - the Vikings were forced out of the
Western Isles, leading to Clan MacDonald
becoming the Lords of the Isles. The
MacDonald's were involved in a number of feuds
over the following centuries with Clans on the
1500s - a Settlement is believed to have
grown at the Kyle of Lochalsh, at one of the
shortest crossings from the Mainland to the
Isle of Skye.
1746 - the Battle of Culloden by Inverness
was the final defeat for the Jacobite's, last
Battle on the British mainland.
Bonnie Prince Charlie escaped the Government
Troops at Culloden by traveling by boat to the
Isle of Skye where Flora MacDonald
helped him return to safety in France. This
romantic event led to the Isle of Skye becoming
the most famous Island in Scotland.
1809 - Sir Walter Scott tours Scotland
leading to him writing the books: Lady of the
Lake, and Rob Roy. These books helped promote
Scotland as a popular tourist destination.
1819 - the Road from Inverness reached Kyle
1842 - Queen Victoria takes the first of her
many tours of Scotland, giving great reviews,
leading to more tourists.
1884 - the Skye Boat Song
is published contain the section - Speed bonny
boat like a bird on a wing, Onward the sailors
cry. Carry the lad that’s born to be King, Over
the sea to Skye. Many people visiting the area
were inspired to do so by this song.
1897 - the Railway was completed between
Inverness and Kyle of Lochalsh, through one of
the most remote parts of Scotland.
This led to Kyle of Lochalsh becoming the
main port for Ferries to the Isle of Skye.
Larger Mail / Passenger Ships were also
introduced at that time to operate between Kyle
of Lochalsh and the Isle of Lewis, about an 80
mile trip by sea.
1956 - Gavin Maxwell
moved to a cottage in the very remote area of
Sandaig, 28 miles south of Kyle of Lochalsh.
Maxwell had with him an Otter brought back from
a trip to Iraq. This led to him writing a book
about Otters named Ring of Bright Water,
becoming a best seller that also lead to a
1960s - there were often very long queues of
cars waiting to board the small Ferries for the
short crossing between Kyle of Lochalsh and
Kyleakin on Skye. These Ferries could only
carry 6 cars.
1968 - Gavin Maxwell's cottage burned down,
leading to him moving to a cottage on Eilean
Ban Island at Kyle of Lochalsh.
1969 - Gavin Maxwell died, leading to
Eilean Ban Island
becoming a tourist attraction.
1970 - new larger Ferries were
added to the short Isle of Skye crossing that
could carry 28 cars.
1973 - the introduction of much larger
Ferries for the Isle of Lewis crossing led to
Ullapool being used for this service. Ullapool
is situated 85 miles north of Kyle of Lochalsh,
with a much larger port, and crossings from
there are shorter at around 53 miles.
The best known of the Kyle of Lochalsh to
the Ilse of Lewis Ferries was MV Loch
1995 - the Skye Bridge was completed,
leading to the end of the Kyle of Lochalsh to
Isle of Skye Ferries.