The road that takes you across the Isle of Skye to the remote Waternish peninsula is perhaps one of the most beautiful in Europe. The first time we visited this part of the world was in 2013. Today there are still many good reasons to make this journey, ending up in Waternish at what feels like the end of the world.
Waternish is named for the Gaelic Bhatarnais and derived from vadn, the Old Norse word for water. The old road for Waternish runs from the Fairy bridge, a stone-built bridge between Edinbane and Dunvegan where the Chief of the MacLeods was given the fairy flag for protection before his fairy wife left him forever to return to her people. Planned as a fishing village by the British Fisheries Society, Stein was designed by Thomas Telford in 1790.
Waternish offers more than beautiful views and landscapes. Situated in a row of whitewashed buildings on the edge of the loch in the village is Michael Smith’s Michelin starred Loch Bay Restaurant. Cosy, with an unpretentious atmosphere, there is a wood-burning stove, plain wooden tables and upholstered chairs. The contemporary Scottish menu is influenced by classic French cuisine with minimal seasoning that honours the shellfish and fish caught locally in the loch and the waters around Skye.
Travelling inland from Loch Bay Restaurant, Skyeskyn is Scotland’s sole remaining sheepskin tannery. Evolving over the years into a five-star visitor attraction, there is a tannery, sewing workshop, two shops, and seasonal pop-up café. As makers and suppliers of luxurious sheepskins, Skyeskyn sources locally and sustainably.
For those of you who can’t make it to Waternish, we can now offer a small, handpicked selection of sheepskins in our shop at Örum 119.