The Uists

North Uist

The Uists

Situated in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides, North Uist, South Uist, and Benbecula form a stunning archipelago of islands that are steeped in natural beauty. North Uist, the northernmost of the three islands, is a tranquil haven of heather-covered moors, freshwater lochs, and pristine sandy beaches.

The main village is Lochmaddy, which is home to the Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum & Arts Centre where visitors can learn about the island’s local history and its associations with contemporary art. Berneray to the north is the location of a ferry terminal and a number of secluded beaches, and Balranald to the south is the site of an RSPB reserve and a beautiful sheltered bay.

South Uist, the second-largest island in the Outer Hebrides, bristles with rugged mountain terrain on its eastern side while the western side features some of the finest white sand beaches in Scotland, running almost the entire length of the island.

Lochboisdale is the main village and the location of a ferry terminal that provides links to the mainland and the Isle of Barra, while Kildonan boasts the Kildonan Museum which displays archaeological finds from the Bronze Age and the Viking period. Though small, the museum has a good collection of exhibits and it’s close to several points of interest including Kildonan Beach, the Reineval Chambered Cairn, and Flora MacDonald’s house (who helped Bonnie Prince Charlie escape after the doomed Battle of Culloden in 1746).

Benbecula, meanwhile, is mostly flat, with a landscape dominated by peat bogs, lochans, and sandy beaches, but the main road is well maintained and presents a wonderful cycling route. The island supports a variety of birdlife, such as lapwings, redshanks, and whooper swans, and there are some absolutely magnificent views to be found, the best being, in my opinion, the view from the summit of Reuval Hill.

For outdoor enthusiasts, these islands offer some of the most spectacular walking and cycling routes in Scotland. The Hebridean Way, a long-distance route stretching from the north of Lewis to the south of Barra, runs through the western coastline of these islands while the Loch Druidibeg nature reserve offers a lovely walk around one of the wildest and most remote landscapes you’re ever likely to find in Scotland.

Reuval Benbecula
  • Isle of Benbecula Visitor Guide

    Isle of Benbecula Visitor Guide

    The Isle of Benbecula is located between the islands of North and South Uist in the Outer Hebrides. Due to its location, Benbecula is an ideal base to explore the Uists but it has a number of attractions of its own including Reuval (the solitary hill in the middle of the island), and several large…

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  • Isle of Eriskay Visitor Guide

    Isle of Eriskay Visitor Guide

    The Isle of Eriskay is situated to the immediate south of South Uist in the Outer Hebrides where it is connected to its much larger neighbour by a 1-mile causeway. In addition to its spectacular coastline, Eriskay is best known for its indigenous Eriskay ponies, of which only 400 are left on earth.

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  • Isle of North Uist Visitor Guide

    Isle of North Uist Visitor Guide

    North Uist is an island in the Outer Hebrides, situated between the islands of Benbecula and Harris. At 117 square miles it is the 10th-largest island in Scotland and has a population of around 1,300 people, most of whom are employed in the fishing and crofting industries. The island is well known for its rugged…

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  • Isle of South Uist Visitor Guide

    Isle of South Uist Visitor Guide

    At 124 square miles, South Uist is the second-largest island in the Outer Hebrides, yet it’s home to less than 2,000 people. Visitors to the island will quickly find themselves lost in a hauntingly beautiful landscape where nature thrives across mile after mile of white powder beaches to the west and thickets of purple heather…

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  • Kildonan Museum Visitor Guide

    Kildonan Museum Visitor Guide

    Kildonan Museum is part of the cultural centre on the island of South Uist in the Outer Hebrides. The Museum collection includes over 10,000 exhibits from South Uist’s past across a wide range of themes from religion to fishing, crafting, and everyday life. In addition to the museum, the centre has a cafe and a…

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  • Loch Druidibeg Visitor Guide

    Loch Druidibeg Visitor Guide

    Loch Druidibeg is part of a nature reserve situated within a beautiful moorland setting on the northern end of the Isle of South Uist in the Outer Hebrides. The loch and surrounding area are managed by the RSPB which cares for the fragile habitats that are home to hen harriers, white-tailed eagles, and myriad insect…

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  • Reuval Visitor Guide

    Reuval Visitor Guide

    The 124-metre summit of Reuval is the highest point on the Outer-Hebridean island of Benbecula. Though the walk up the hill is short it’s undeniably one of the highlights of a visit to this remarkable isle as the top offers gorgeous panoramic views of the surrounding sea, beaches, and mountains.

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