The Old Man of Storr is by far the most famous walk on the Isle of Skye. I’ve also heard it is the busiest. Well, it is not as visited as The Eiffel tower, but you’ll see some people around.
Don’t panic, it is perfectly possible to get great photos with nobody around.
According to the Wild Guide Scotland, the Old Man of Storr is a 48m-high, rocky pinnacle which can be spotted from miles around, if the weather allows it.
Some books and blogs categorise the Old Man of Storr as a familiar walk, though I am not quite sure about that. Mine is a 4-wheeled 7-year-old kid, and I reckon she would have gotten exhausted had she walked with us. Anyway, for an average adult who likes walking, the Old Man of Storr is fairly simple, with some slightly rough parts (not many), but a pretty clear path.
The walk uses the same path up and down, starting at the car park, which is located right by the main road, 6 ¼ miles from Portree (about ten minutes driving).
The walk offers fantastic views all over the way. Halfway through it there was supposed to be a wood; there is none today, but instead, you’ll get to see marvellous views of the Isle of Raasay.
There are also a couple of wooden gates which were designed not to bother you opening and closing them in an outdoor environment, but to keep deers out, so close the gates behind you.
Once you get to the part in which the path is divided in two, I suggest you take the right one. We got to this risen slope, from which we took awesome photos of the Storr and the landscape surrounding it. Then, we went down the same path and turned left, from where we walked to the rocky area itself.
# Things to bear in mind!
When it rains, you should not go into the rocky area. In fact, you should never go into that area, yet most tourist do (also guilty). There’s supposed to be a high risk of rockfall, which increases when it rains.
Having said that, if it starts raining, get out of the rocky area, but do not make the mistake of heading straight back to the car park. The shower will most probably end in a couple of minutes.
Also, pee before leaving Portree. There are no bloody toilets around and trying to find a solitary spot to wee if frankly impossible.
Bring a scarf or a woolly hat, or both. Most Scottish people say Scotland can have the four seasons in only one day, and they are bloody right. There was a hot forecast for the morning we walked up the Storr. Nevertheless, halfway through the walk, a heavy wind started to blow. As a result, I got a mild earache. Fortunately, it didn’t go chronic since a recent-met friend had a scarf and lent it to me.
Finally, I strongly recommend making a short stop at the Tourist Information at Portree. People there are very friendly. Plus, they can provide you with a map of the Isle and the surrounding areas, and help you plan the route/itinerary considering the time you are staying and the landmarks you plan to visit.
To see my Isle of Skye itinerary, click here.
#How to get there.
- Renting a car is the most comfortable option, since you can get there whenever you want, and leave the place without worrying about the bus schedule.
- If not, the bus number 57 leaves from Portree 4 times a day. It has a fixed schedule, but it is only 4 pounds the round trip. Click here to access the link of their service. (https://www.stagecoachbus.com)
- Apparently, there is also a train service, but we could not verify this option, hence I cannot say whether it is true or not.
- Taxis go from Portree to the Old Man of Storr for a maximum of about 21 pounds.