Scotland, Part 2: The Highlands and the Isle of Skye

I snapped this shot of the famed Eilean Donan Castle — a 13th-century castle perched on an island at the interstice of three lochs in Kyle of Lochalsh, Scotland — on my last trip to the Highlands, in May 2015. The Scottish weather, as changeable as ever, had put on a real show for us that morning: we drove north through patches of light snow, and arrived at Eilean Donan as blue sky emerged and streaks of afternoon sun hit the Isle of Skye's snow-dusted peaks in the distance.

From here, we crossed the bridge to island headed north to Sconser to hop the last ferry of the day to Raasay, a 24-square-mile island off Skye's east coast. Well..., it turned out that that particular day, the last ferry had already departed (we were off-season, remember). So, long story short, we ended up on a kind fisherman's boat. Good thing, because we were booked to stay at Raasay House, a historic manor that hosted English literary giant Samuel Johnson in 1773. Now owned and run by the community, the Raasay House makes the perfect home base for exploring the island's wild terrain.

 Raasay House

Raasay House

 The ferry coming from Sconser

The ferry coming from Sconser

After returning to Skye, we made our way north to see the sights of the Trotternish Peninsula — the most notable of which include Mealt Falls, the Storr and the Old Man of Storr, and the Quirang.

 The Storr and the Old Man of Storr

The Storr and the Old Man of Storr

 Mealt Falls, on the northeast coast of the Isle of Skye's Trotternish Peninsula 

Mealt Falls, on the northeast coast of the Isle of Skye's Trotternish Peninsula 

 The panoramic View from Quiraing out over Staffin Bay

The panoramic View from Quiraing out over Staffin Bay

Crossing back over to mainland Scotland, we wound our way through the Highland lochs, passing the picturesque Loch Leven after another short snow flurry whitened the tops of the surrounding peaks.

 Loch Leven

Loch Leven

 The Three Sisters of Glen Coe

The Three Sisters of Glen Coe

All in all, this late Spring trip cemented my love for the Scottish Highlands — and the Scottish people as well. I look forward to the next time I can make it back; perhaps on that occasion I'll actually get to stay in the remote-beyond-description King's House Hotel in the scenically desolate valley at the top of Glen Coe. Don't you want to come with me?!