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    UK City Break - Visit Skye

    The Fairy TowerAre you thinking of taking a short city break this year? If you pick up a car hire then you can explore plenty of the UK within a short time and enjoy beautiful places that you may have never discovered before; and return from your break relaxed and uplifted back into life.The Isle of Skye is 167 miles (269kms) from Glasgow, 192 miles (308kms) from Edinburgh and 210 miles (337kms) from Aberdeen. If you decide to fly in to any of these three destinations, you can pick up your car at the airport and take a beautiful scenic route to the mysterious Isle of Skye. This island near the very north of Scotland has been populated since the Middle Stone Age around 11,660BC. Today, the population is only 9,200 and it is the second largest island in Scotland after Lewis and Harris. The island is only 60 miles long and is dominated by the Black Cuillin Hills, which peak at 992 metres (3255ft). Skye is linked to the mainland of Scotland by the Skye Bridge and a ferry service runs so you can easily go island hoping if you decide to get a car hire. There are many places to visit in Skye, so it is really worth taking time to explore the beauty this island in the UK has to offer.

    The Old Man of Storr: Is a geological feature just North of Portree on the island. It is a rocky hill overlooking the Sounds of Raasay. Within this site there are ancient volcanic plugs which makes it very peaceful giving it the name The Sanctuary. One of the most famous, is the Old Man of Storr, as well as trees and beautiful landscapes which you can capture on your camera for an unforgettable memory. You are able to walk up these rocky mountains, right to the very top and admire stunning views of Skye and the surroundings, it is so high that fog and mist actually form around the main rock!

    Giant Angus MacAskill Museum: Angus MacAskill was the tallest Scotsman to have lived and the tallest recorded true giant. He stood at 7ft 8inches (2.36 metres) tall and was said to be super strong too. Legend has it that he was able to carry barrels of pork that weighed over 300lbs under each arm, or lift a fully grown horse over a four foot fence, or tear a fishing boat into two pieces (that is some strength!). Even when he became famous and went to America, he was challenged by some French sailors to lift an anchor. It has been estimated that the anchor weighed between 2,200lb and 2,700lb! This museum is a memorial to this man and has a life size statue of him, as well as a giant bed and other great things to see.

    Dunvegan Castle: This castle is the oldest continuously inhabited castle in Scotland for nearly 800 years. It was originally designed to keep people out so only opened to the public in 1933. Within Dunvegan Castle there are many important relics, the main being The Fairie Flag of Dunvegan, a fragment of cloth owned by the Clan MacLeod family (the family whom have lived in the castle for these 800 years) for whom it is considered a family treasure. The flags legend is said to provide salvation to the Clan MacLeod in the time of a disaster, by summoning a fairy army. On the first waving, the family were out numbered with the MacDonalds. At the exact point the chief had waved the flag, the battle had turned in favour of the MacLeods, when the flag was waved for the second time, the cattle were dying of pestilence, and the fairy army restored them back to health. It has also been said that during World War II the 28th Chief had offered to wave the flag over the cliffs of Dover if the Germans were near victory. The fighter pilots had been known to have a picture of the flag on them, not one was shot down. Spooky.This is only a small selection of sights to see in Skye, there are many others including the Cuillin Hills, take a boat trip to see some beautiful seal colonies or some of the many castle ruins that are left to lay here and the Talisker Distillery where you can try some fine whisky. With your car rental take a ferry that sails from Armdale to Mallaig where the railway line was used to film the Harry Potter Hogwarts Express, or depart from Kylerhea to Glenelg which offers you a beautiful scenic route between Skye and the mainland with the first car ferry introduced in 1935. In Kylerhea you will find a beautiful otter sanctuary where you can observe these little wonders.Have you been to Skye? What would you recommend to see? Tell us what you thought of your visit. (Thank you to Richard Gifford on Flickr for the use of this photo)

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