Neist Point Lighthouse, Scotland (with Map & Photos)

Reaching the lighthouse at Neist Point on the Isle of Skye involves several trials. The first, driving down a narrow one-lane road dodging inquisitive-eyed sheep. Who are you, and why do you come to disturb their tranquility?

Neist Point Lighthouse
Neist Point Lighthouse

The second is to continue on foot along a long path that crosses the rocks towards the sea until the lighthouse finally appears before you. The third, to start the way back, this time uphill.

But the obstacles are worth it to reach Neist Point Lighthouse, Scotland 's most famous lighthouse. Are you preparing a route around the Isle of Skye? Join us to visit the Neist Point Lighthouse!

The Neist Point Lighthouse, A Remote Lighthouse

The picture is postcard-perfect: at the westernmost tip of the Isle of Skye, on a cliff facing the sea, Neist Point Lighthouse rises with its white tower amidst sheep, jagged rocks and green weeds.

If it weren't for the fact that, on clear days, the Outer Hebrides are silhouetted across the water in front of the lighthouse, Neist Point would seem to mark the end of the world.

Scotland does not end here, but surely the feeling of having arrived in a remote place will not leave you. The wind, the green rocks, the endless sea...

The idyllic image that Neist Point evokes today must have seemed more isolated and inhospitable to the lighthouse keepers who have lived there since the lighthouse was first lit in 1909. The design was the work of David Alan Stevenson, a cousin of the writer RL Stevenson, and a member of a family of engineers who designed many of Scotland's lighthouses.

Today the lighthouse is still operational but, since 1990, it has been remotely controlled from Edinburgh, and the lighthouse keeper's home is privately owned.

Neist Point Lighthouse
Neist Point Lighthouse

How To Get To Neist Point Lighthouse

Touring the Isle of Skye

To visit the Neist Point lighthouse, you will first have to travel around the Isle of Skye until you find, more or less at the height of Dunvegan, the B884 road towards Glendale.

The landscapes that appear on the other side of the window are of indescribable beauty, with an explosion of nature in the form of pastures, bays, flocks of sheep... And, from time to time, a little white house scattered throughout the landscape. Little by little, the road narrows and becomes one lane, so you will have to share it with visitors returning from the lighthouse.

But Neist Point is well marked, and, little by little and with patience, it will not be difficult for you to reach the area. Keep in mind that the lighthouse is not visible from the car: you will have to leave it in a small parking lot (in summer it tends to be full and there is no other place to park, so it is worth going early) and continue on foot along the path.

Neist Point Lighthouse
Neist Point Lighthouse

The path to the lighthouse: duration and difficulty

From the car park, a round trip walk of about 1 hour awaits you (which, taking into account that it will include stops, ends up being about 2 hours). The difficulty of the path is that, as it runs along the top of the rock, at some points there is quite a difference in level, especially on the way back. But, even if you return to the car pouring your liver out of your mouth… the effort is worth it !

The first section towards the lighthouse are some stairs that descend towards the cliffs. From there, the path leads you to the top of the cliff… And, finally, after overcoming the elevation change, there it is: the first image of the Neist Point lighthouse.

There is still a little more to get to the buildings, but the truth is that the most spectacular image is from a distance, with the contrast between the white tower, the sea and the greyish sky, the green… This spectacular environment has appeared several times on screen, as in the movie Breaking the Waves, by Lars von Trier; one of the many cinema corners in Scotland.

As in so many other places, at Neist Point it is the journey that conquers you, not the destination, since, up close, the lighthouse is a bit disappointing in its state of neglect. Although it is still in operation, the buildings seem abandoned to their fate, so after a look, it is best that you continue exploring the area.

To one side of the lighthouse, travelers have built hundreds of stone cairns, small cairns that dot the basalt rock landscape until they reach the sea.

They say that this is one of the best places in Scotland to see whales, dolphins and basking sharks. And although we only saw seabirds, in this corner of Neist Point, with the specter of the Outer Hebrides before us, we were overcome with calm and happiness...

Neist Point Lighthouse
Neist Point Lighthouse

Visit The Neist Point Lighthouse

  • Neist Point Lighthouse | Isle of Skye IV55 8WU
  • How long does it take to get to the lighthouse? About 30 minutes on foot following the path (and another 30 to return). If you just want to see the lighthouse from afar, it will take about 20 minutes.
  • How to get to the lighthouse. From the A863 turn off onto the B884 towards Glendale. The lighthouse is signposted.
  • 2-day itinerary on the Isle of Skye: map, places of interest, driving, where to eat…
  • Where to sleep in Dunvegan. We stayed in this town, about 30 minutes from the Neist Point lighthouse. There are several B&Bs and it is also a good starting point to explore the north of the island. Here you can see other accommodations on the Isle of Skye.

Neist Point Lighthouse Map