The Skye Guide is an independent and personal view of the Isle of Skye. The things that are included in the guide are here because I like them - and because I think you might too. If something is not included, it may be because I would not recommend it to you, but it may be simply that I have not experienced it.
I am happy with that ambiguity...
Dinosaurs on Skye
Dinosaur footprint on Staffin beach, with a 10p coin for scale
Although the vast majority of Skye is composed of fossil-free basalt rocks, there are exposures of sedimentary beds in several places around the coasts. Many of these exposures are difficult to reach, and many of them are rich in fossils. For the casual fossil seeker, the most attractive of Skye's sites are the ones with evidence of dinosaurs. Luckily, two of the best places to find them - Staffin and Duntulm - are very easy to get to.
Dinosaur Prints at Staffin
On the beach at An Corran, Staffin, are some remarkable footprints. They were left by a family of dinosaurs that walked across the sand here some 165 million years ago. To put that in context, the gabbro rocks of the Cuillin were formed about 60 million years ago, and they were carved by the glaciers of the last ice age on Skye just 11,000 years ago. These are very, very old footprints. To be able to see and touch them in-situ is an amazing experience. There is a sense of connection with these beings from an unimaginable distance in time.
Red Hills - Belig
Belig is a shapely pyramid of a hill, rising to an interesting 702m summit between Loch Ainort and Loch Slapin. The views from the top are very good indeed, making it a rewarding outing. It can be climbed fairly easily from the shore of Loch Slapin, but the route from Loch Ainort avoids all exposure and keeps the scrambling to a minimum, making the outing 'moderate' rather than 'stretching' in the categories used by the Skye Guide. This, then, is the route described here...
Eilean Ban - Gavin Maxwell's Island
Gavin Maxwell, author of 'Ring of Bright Water", conservationist and shark hunter (how did those two work together?), secret agent, aristocrat and artist, lived in the cottage on Eilean Ban for the last two years of his life in the late 1960s. He had already owned the island for five years, having bought it from the lighthouse board in 1963. During his time here he converted the lighthouse keepers' cottages into one home, continued his writing and painting and established a small zoo of native scottish animals.
Trotternish - Sgurr a' Mhadaidh Ruaidh
This is a fine walk of around 11km to the best viewpoint on the Trotternish Ridge. Including two summits, and easy options of two more, it is an interesting and scenic walk, with little or nothing in the way of navigational challenge. The total climb involved is around 900m. Sgurr a’Mhadaidh Ruaidh (The Peak of the Red Fox) juts out east from the main line of the ridge, giving a clear view north towards Beinn Edra and the Quiraing, and south past Baca Ruadh to The Storr. At 593m, it offers commanding views to the Scottish mainland as well.