The local area

The Orchids is in a beautiful spot close beside the seashore on the edge of Loch Dunvegan, in the North West of the Isle of Skye. This is a very peaceful and unspoiled corner of Skye that makes an excellent base for walking, fishing, birdwatching, cycling, climbing and diving holidays.

We are in Colbost, a crofting township that’s part of the larger area of Glendale, surrounded by hills and moorland and near the foot of Macleod’s Tables, the distinctive flat topped hills of the Duirinish peninsula. Loch Dunvegan is a wide sea loch that opens into the Minch, the narrow stretch of water that separates Skye from the Outer Hebrides.

Colbost itself is best known for the Three Chimneys Restaurant, which is located within walking distance from the cottage. Dunvegan is situated just five miles from The Orchids, and has a small selection of shops, cafes, and restaurants, including the popular Old School Restaurant, and a tourist information centre. Whilst here a visit to Dunvegan Castle, the oldest inhabited castle in Scotland and the ancestral home of the Chief of the Clan MacLeod, is highly recommended.

You can take a boat trip from the castle to see the Loch Dunvegan seal colony at close quarters. The wonderful coral beaches just north of Dunvegan are also well worth a visit. In the opposite direction Glendale has a small, but very well stocked, shop and Post Office and two Cafés. Further on, Neist Point, with its lighthouse, offers some of the most spectacular scenery on the island, and the opportunity to spot sea eagles, golden eagles, basking sharks and whales.

On a clear day, the islands of the Outer Hebrides are clearly visible. The Glendale area is also a popular choice with walkers, and the quiet country roads ideal for the cyclist. The absence of light pollution makes Glendale an amazing place to watch the night sky, with the Milky Way clearly visible overhead after dark and shooting stars streaking overhead. On Autumn and Spring nights, when conditions are right, the Aurora Borealis provides an awesome and very beautiful spectacle over Loch Pooltiel.