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Western Isles Travel Guide - Scotland

The 130–mile long chains of islands known as the Western Isles have been inhabited for more than 6000 years.

The islands are home to a diversity of wildlife with spectacular scenery and friendly local people.

The Western Isles with their combination of beautiful landscapes, lochs and sea lochs, clean sandy beaches, wild flowers, flora and fauna, provide landscapes of national importance and four areas have been designated National Nature Reserves.

The Vikings came to these islands from as early as the 9th century and have certainly left their mark here, embedded in the rich and vibrant culture and in the place names, most of which have Norse origin.

Gaelic is the main spoken language although everyone can speak English but if it is culture you want, that's what you'll get.

There is never a dull moment, the isles have various festivals throughout the year including ceilidhs, mods and other musical events.

Getting to the islands is easy with regular ferries and flights from the mainland.

There is so much to see and do in the Western Isles, with plentiful historic sites and museums, you will need several holidays to see it all and you will be welcomed like an old friend every time.