It all started here...

It all started here...

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Portree, Isle of Skye, Scotland

HAL Zuiderdam 12-Day Fjords and Highlands Cruise Day 8
Wednesday May 24, 2017 -- Portree, Isle of Skye, Scotland (8:00~4:00)
Weather: Cloudy and rainy (15~58F)

The Isle of Skye is one of the larger Inner Hebrides off the coast of western Scotland in the Northern Highlands. These islands are among the most beautiful in the world. The Isle of Skye is best known as the place where Charles Edward Stuart, "Bonnie Prince Charlie," escaped from during the Jacobite Uprising. Portree is a very small town where almost everything is just five minutes walk away. 

Very pretty ridges on the island when our ship anchored at 7:45. Looking at that gorgeous landscape, we decided that we should try to get there if at all possible because we saw people hiking near there.

While we were having breakfast at the Lido, the CD announced that there were 800 people going on various tours here so he encouraged all the independent travelers to either get off before 8:30 or after 10:00. We had made arrangements to meet at 9:00 and had no intention to change our plans. When we got to Queen's Lounge for the tender tickets, we found that there was only one other couple waiting there. We got our tickets and were told that we could get on the tender right away. Even the crew members were impressed at how we got everyone ready every time without having to wait for one another.

Getting off the tender at the pier.

The town of Portree lies above and behind the harbor.

These colorful houses along the harbor on Quay Street have been photographed and printed on many calendars and publications.

The whitewashed buildings on the other side of the harbor were strikingly beautiful also.
There is a stairway that leads up to the main part of town on the left of this picture before making that turn around Rosedale Hotel. 

We skipped the stairs and took Quay Street up which will meet back with Bank Street at the top.

Some shops were already opened for business and we went in for a peek as we strolled along.

From Bank Street we made a right to Bosville Terrace with the water on our right. We had the 'ridges' in mind and that was the direction we were heading towards.
We have the habit of going to the farthest sights first and work our way back closer to port for better time control.

A view of the colorful houses near the harbor from Bosville Terrace/Mill Road.

Zuiderdam anchored off the harbor.

Coolin View Guest House

Some beautiful gardens and houses as we walked down Scorrybreac Road.

A small riverbed.

There was a view point on one side up the hill.

A good vantage point with a view of the harbor.

The trail became narrower as we continued on our adventure.

Almost to the 'ridge' certainly looked pretty up that way...

but then we decided that it was far enough for us to go. We did not know how the trail will be like and the weather seemed to be getting worse. We also saw a gentleman walking down from the trail, all wet and dirty, maybe we shouldn't go any further? I asked a couple who were on the walk and they told us that the trail is narrow and slippery up that way. If it was a footpath similar to the one on the Knab walk, I would definitely go for it. But with several seniors in our group I figured we should not take that chance. By now, we have been on this walk for an hour.

on our way back

As we were walking back to town, more and more people came through this way, even the HAL excursion groups, doing exactly what we did.

Back to the view point.

That's the map of the trail. We only went as far as the tip on the bottom of this map.

Corner of Bank Street, Quay Street, and Wentworth Street where we made a turn to town.
This is a good shopping town with many souvenir shops. Everyone in our group bought something to take home. MOR got another wool sweater and we bought boxes of shortbread cookies to bring home for families.

Presbyterian Church at Somerled Square.

We came upon this thrift shop in Somerled Square and had a great time treasure hunting. Too bad we just couldn't bring back all the things we wanted. I ended up with a pair of name-brand sunglasses and a tanzanite bracelet. A total of 14GBP. SIL found a really dressy gold and black top that she could wear on formal nights. All in great condition.

Bridge Road

There's a short line at the free public toilets on the left of this picture.

The famous Royal Hotel at Bridge Road and Bank Street, across from the stairway that lead us back to the tender port.

More delicious hot cocoa before getting back on the ship.

For lunch, I usually had a big bowl of salad ...

with whatever else available at the buffet.

The weather turned really gloomy as we were leaving Portree at 4:00.

Seafood Platter

Chicken Corn Soup

Grilled Lamb Chops

Dover Sole

Always had after dinner sweets as we leave the dining room. Loved his smiling face.

Candied ginger or figs?

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