Thursday, January 24, 2019

Oysters, Lobster, Talisker and Portree ~ The Last of the Isle of Skye

Little Illustrations from my Travel Journal

Isle of Skye


We only had two full days on Skye and we made the most of them. On our second day, after visiting Dunvegan Castle (in my previous post), we headed to the oldest working distillery on the Island, on the shores of Loch Harport. Talisker is one of my favorite Scotch's which you might have guessed by my happy expression. :)

More on the subject of Scotch later!

After a tour and a tasting of Talisker (say that 5 times fast) we headed a short distance, up a steep driveway behind the distillery, to the Oyster Shed. We heard it supplies some of the best restaurants on Skye. Apparently, it started with the owner just selling some oysters out of a bucket ...

Now the guys that work for him come straight from Loch Harport and over to the shed with these blue bins ...

Nice view out the back, eh?

And the oysters, lobster and whatever else they catch end up inside on ice and ready to eat!

They have a little covered patio on the side with a sink to wash your hands, paper towels and some Tabasco Sauce. What else could you need?!

I must admit, I have a fear of certain seafoods and getting sick, but unless you were actually ON the boat, it couldn't get any fresher! So, I indulged! Big time! We all did! 

First we got a dozen to share, and then another 1/2 dozen, and then another 1/2 dozen! Delicious, decadent and delectable! They could not have been more fabulous out of the cold Scottish waters!

Oh yeah, and there was also this ...

We meandered back on the winding roads, past more flocks of sheep, and even more charming white houses back to Portree. 

Our AirBnB was above the small village square and below it is this charming bay.

Portree began as a fishing village in the 1800's. Not very old, by Scotland's standards! It's a lovely little village and it's also the capital of the Isle of Skye.

We'd eaten in one of those sweet colored buildings the night before, at Sea Breezes, which was fantastic! After arriving on Skye, the night before that, we'd eaten Seafood at their sister restaurant on the square, Cuchullin Restaurant which was also great. But on our last night we ate upstairs at a small  hotel, on the water, called the Rosedale.

Just a reminder, that especially during the summer months, get your dinner reservations ahead! For Sea Breezes we got our reservations 3 or so days beforehand. It was this way everywhere during the summer (Edinburgh, Inverness) and especially Skye. When in doubt, call way ahead and get an idea of how far in advance to make reservations.

Check out the view from the Rosedale Restaurant!

The food was lovely and very gourmet. Each plate was a delicious little work of art. It was definitely a treat for our last night on the Isle. The evenings in late August were quite cool and I was very happy with my big, wool, tartan shawl I'd purchased in Edinburgh!

Below was our quant little AirBnB. The upstairs window was my room.

We never got a chance to use the deck but I'm guess May-July would be a better time to use it.

 The photo below was from the top of the stairs looking at the other little apartments and duplexes.

Leaving Skye was tough, especially because the sun broke through!

One last sweet version of The Skye Boat Song by Jo Burgess 


We headed south to catch the ferry from Skye across to Mallaig.  By the way, it's a good idea to reserve your car space at least the day before.

We queued up our Nissan and got coffees while we waited for our ferry to arrive. There was also a tiny little shop and of course my mom and I spotted some lovely goodies. Lovely embroidered cotton scarves and a small handmade woolen pouch for my sister Penny.

Below deck ...

As you can see on the map, below, we did a pretty good job of making it around Skye but there was so much more we could have taken in. There are endless beautiful walks and hikes, as well as sea views, and the Neist Point light house! 

I loved Skye and hope to return one day. My sweet friend Siri, who I work with at the Wizard of Art, has told me about the other beautiful Scottish islands! It's never ending! She loves Iona and Mull. I'm going to have to add those to my ever growing list!

Alas, it was time to head back to the Highlands to see where my matrilineal line of Camerons had come from and on to the weeping glen!


To read some beautiful Scottish Poetry about the Islands, click here

Blessings and light!