Posted by: Marcie Miller | June 22, 2010

We met Eilean Donan on the way to the Isle of Skye

Sorry for the long hiatus.  We now jump back to where we left off (May 18) having left Loch Lomond and headed northwest toward the Isle of Skye.  On the way we stopped at a well-known attraction curiously named Eilean Donan Castle.

Eilean Donan Castle

This picturesque castle used in the movie “Highlander,” just a few miles from the “Skye Bridge,” was rebuilt in1932 after being bombarded by three English ships in 1719 during the Jacobite uprising.  The restoration took 20 years, a testament to Scottish stubborn…. ehh fortitude.  As for the name, “Eilean” it just means “Island of” in Scotts Gaelic.

The trek that followed was slow on the rustic Isle of Skye.  Roskhill house, our B and B, was near the town and Dunvegan Castle, home of Chris’s clan McLeod (or MacLeod).  The following day we ventured to the castle.  We found the majestic seat of power to one of Scotland most notorious clans under scaffolding and canvas.  It is being restored, of all the luck!

Dunvegan Castle, we expected something different

The tour was fascinating.  Did you know that the Chief of the Clan McLeod must drink about ½ gallon of wine in a single draught from an ancient drinking horn at the official swearing in ceremony?  The new Chief is practicing; he is up to 1 quart.   Did you know that the Clan’s most treasured artifact, the “Fairy” Flag, when unfurled in battle ensures victory?  It’s true.

The "pepper pots" were added later in the castle's evolution

This gate appears to be the oldest part of the castle

After the castle tour we went west to explore. It was our first experience with “look ahead” roads.  These are two-way roads that are one lane wide with turnouts.  Drivers need to look ahead to see if they need to turn out.  We didn’t see a lot of people, but we found other things.

Curious fellas

The latest in international signs

Western portion of the Isle of Skye

Our English hosts (yes English) had earlier booked us dinner at a restaurant in the village of Stein.  The seafood restaurant was average, and was run and full of English.  The waitress was kind enough to explain the difference between a lobster pick and an oyster spork to us unenlightened Americans.  The village however is very quaint and has the former cottage belonging to Donovan the singer.  When earlier looking for accommodations online, we discovered this place where Donovan hosted several celebrities including George Harrison.

The village of Stein, Donovan's cottage is on the point

It was in Stein we had our first look and another Scottish Highland attraction.

Highland Cattle

From here, we faced the challenging journey to Edinburgh, the Athens of the North.  Join us there soon.  We mean it this time!

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Responses

  1. I have stayed in the house once owned by Donovan, it’s a wonderful house and knowing George Harrison possibly stayed there makes it seem more magical………


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