Borreraig and Galtrigill- Isle of Skye

A simple walk on the Isle of Skye to the old village of Galtrigill.

On Location: 13th April 2024

Parking: Parking in this area is fairly limited. We found a parking space near the now closed Borreraig Park Museum. What Three Words: ///stiff.paid.headlight. GR: NG 19236 52391 The parking here may be on private land so please park responsibly. If you do have to park elsewhere nearby please consider the local traffic and do not park in passing places.

Refreshments: There are no toilets or refreshments on this route, the nearest being at the small township of Glendale where there is a small shop and café. The Café Lephin (check link for opening times).

This area of the Duirinish peninsular is not on the usual tourist itinerary. We visited here as part of out trip to the island purely out of curiosity and we were staying nearby. Close inspection of a map will reveal quite an area of open moorland and the impressive cliffs of Boid an Athair. But for this wander we mostly followed the quiet single track road that passes through Borreraig (Boraraig) and then ends at the abandoned village of Galtrigill (Galtraigeall).

This is mainly a post with a selection of my images from the route which is fairly self-explanatory.

Route map: click on the arrow to play the route. Files for the route in various formats are available to download by clicking in the link at the bottom right.

We parked near the now closed Borreraig Park Museum, there is no indication as to whether the attraction will re-open in the future. Close to it was this old building, not sure of it’s purpose but it has enough character to make a nice little sketch sometime.

Old shed Uig, Isle of Skye

From the museum we walked up along the road to the Uig crossroads where we turned left (north). The roads here are quiet but do be mindful of the possibility of traffic.

Post box Uig, Isle of Skye

Passing this bright post-box which contrasted nicely with the gorse which was in full bloom.

Looking to Borreraig from Uig, Skye

Heading north along the lane towards Borreraig.

MacCrimmons cairn, Borreraig, near Dunvegan

Over to our right is the promontory of Boreraig Hoe, on which is the substantial cairn dedicated to the MacCrimmon family. We will not be heading to the cairn today but we will visit it on another walk when I will give more information on it and the family.

Old Post Office Borreraig, Isle of Skye

Just passing what was the old Borreraig post office, looking back long the way we have just walked.

Boreraig Hoe, Isle of Skye, Loch Dunvegan

Continuing along the lane, Loch Dunvegan is down to our right.

Shieling at Galtrigill, Isle of Skye

Soon we reach the road end at Galtrigill. In the fields to the right we take a closer look at the remains of what once was a substantial crofting township. All that remains are the thick dry stone walls of the blackhouses.

Galtrigill old village, near Dunvegan, Isle of Skye

The most famous resident of Galtrigill was Donald MacLeod, who was known as Bonnie Prince Charlie’s Pilot. He ferried the prince across the waters of the Hebrides for several weeks after the battle of Culloden.

Manners Stone Galtrigill, Isle of Skye

At Galtrigill, sitting on a parcel of open pasture is “The Manners Stone”, a slab of flat rock raised off the ground by other stones. Various stories relate to this stone. One is that supposedly if someone sits on the rock they will be blessed with good manners, and if they do so “bare-arsed” it will improve fertility. Another is that the stone was a place where offerings would be made in the hope of a good harvest, the Gaelic word manadh (pronounced mana) means omen.

Galtrigill Burn, near Dunvegan, Isle of Skye

Close by is the deep ravine of Galtrigill Burn. Well keep well above the gorge and head down in the direction of the bay.

Galtrigill old village near Dunvegan, Isle of Skye

Passing more of the abandoned shielings as the bay comes into view.

Galtrigill Bay and Loch Dunvegan Skye

There is a small gate in the field boundary which looks as if the path would lead down to the bay. However, I had a look at it. The path drops steeply and the ground looks to be unstable, so much so that there is a length of rope tied to a rock. This indicated to me that to gain access to or from the beach the rope would need to be used. As the ground was quite wet and slippery I decided against using this method of descent so we just looked at the bay from the headland.

Galtrigill Bay Isle of Skye

In the bay are the ruins of a building.

Salthouse ruins Galtrigill Bay Skye

Apparently this was a house used for salting fish, today it stands alone in the bay just above the high waterline.

Galtrigill Shieling, near Dunvegan, Isle of Skye

We took time to explore more of the abandoned homesteads in the area before returning to the road.

Borreraig, near Dunvegan, Isle of Skye

We retraced our steps along the lane. Away in the distance are the flat tops of MacLeod’s Tables.

Iosaigh island, Loch Dunvegan, from Borreraig

Across the loch rain showers are passing over Cnoc Mor a Ghrobain at the Coral Beach.

Big Sky over Uig, near Dunvegan, Isle of Skye

Dramatic skies over the landscape.

Abandoned farmhouse Uig, near Dunvegan, Skye

We had a little look at this old abandoned farmhouse which sits just off the roadside. I wonder what stories it could tell?

Coral Beach Skye from Borreraig across Loch Dunvegan

The Coral Beach with a patch of sunshine.

Road at Uig near Dunvegan Skye

Nearing the end of our walk as we return to the start. The lane enclosed by flowering gorse with the village of Dunvegan in the distance off to the left.

It was hardly an exciting walk but one which we found interesting in this quiet part of the island. I don’t expect many to follow in our footsteps but personally I enjoy exploring these “off the beaten track” locations. Generally I always find something to make a good sketch or painting.

Thanks for reading.

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