Scotland: Skye or Mull?

Old Mar 30th, 2002, 04:42 PM
Chris Spoor
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Scotland: Skye or Mull?

I asked my husband what he'd like to see during our trip to Scotland this November and he said (among other things) "mountains and islands." Besides visiting various historic sites, we plan to take a boat trip on Loch Lomond and and perhaps Loch Ness and hike as much as possible in and around Glencoe, Ben Nevis (though not to the top; we're not that hardy), Loch Tay, and Loch Rannoch.

If it turns out that we only have two full days to spend in the islands, could you recommend Skye or Mull? I've heard people rave about both. Are there differences that make one stand out above the other in your view? Is there another island besides those that we should be considering?

Remember that this will be November, so the daylight will be short and the weather unpredcitable. We're trying not to cram too much travelling into each day. We'd rather find a few nice spots and explore in a liesurely way from there.
Old Mar 30th, 2002, 05:08 PM
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Chris - I have spent a lot of time on both islands, really enjoy both but Mull is definitely my favorite.

BUT for a November trip with only 2 days (and it pains me to say this) I would probably recommend Skye. It is larger - there are a FEW more indoor things in case the weather turns evil. If you get such bad weather that you get stuck in town - Portree is larger than Tobermory with more shopping and pubs/restaurants. Skye has more two lane roads so travel isn't as difficult (except the entire Totternish penninsula is single track). Plus Skye has a more developed tourist industry so more things will be open in Nov.

If you were going in June I would highly recommend Mull - the ferry to Iona, boat trips to Staffa/Fingals Cave, the gorgeous beaches etc. - but for November I'd pick Skye - and it is an easy trip over from Glen Coe/ Ft William to Mallaig. Then you could take the bridge off the Isle towards Inverness.
Old Mar 30th, 2002, 05:46 PM
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Both are great, with the time crunch, I definitely agree. You're better off with Skye.
Old Mar 31st, 2002, 01:32 AM
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Chris some additional comments

1. Check the boats on the lochs are running so late inthe season. My guess is you'll be OK on Loch Lomond but I doubt the cruises run so late on Loch Ness.

2. In November you MUST be careful of winter conditions on the hills. The weather is very changeable. There is a track to the top of Ben Nevis which tourists can do easily given a limited degree of fitness. But in winter you have to be careful about frozen conditions underfoot, and the sudden arrival of snow and low cloud. Low level walking might be chilly or damp but is unlikely to be dangerous.

I too would go for Skye. Mull is very pleasant but is tame by comparison for scenery. The Cuillins are outr most spectaculr mountains. Mull is more moor than spectacle.

Mind you I'd rather spend two wet days in the bar of the Mishnish in Tobermory than any pub I can think of on Skye- except maybe the Eilean Iarmain
Old Apr 27th, 2002, 05:43 PM
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have been to both mull is more relaxed and quainter, but with only 2 days i would go to skye easier to get to and more things to do iif the weather gets bad
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