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We have moved and are running a new B&B in Sutherland.


Dark Skye Discovery & Astronomy Holidays

Please forgive the pun (if you spotted it!). We offer bed and breakfast (and full board) accommodation during the autumn and winter months, ideal for astronomy enthusiasts, due to our proximity to several Dark Sky Discovery Sites. We also offer astronomy courses for kids and absolute beginnners.

Due to very low levels of light pollution, the Isle of Skye has more Dark Sky Discovery Sites than almost anywhere in Britain, and even Scotland, and two of these are very near us - see below for more information. Moreover, there is excellent dark sky viewing from the croftland just behind our house. Although being on the west coast means that Skye has more than its fair share of rain and mist and cloud, when the skies are clear, they are spectacular, offering unrivalled stellar displays and nightsky observation.

We certainly recommend that you check the weather forecasts before you set out on a dark sky trip to Skye. (On the Met Office weather map, we are a bit to the south of Portree - if you see the directions page you can see exactly where we are). If there is an easterly airstream and high pressure during the winter then this is often a particularly good sign. Longer range forecasts can be seen on XC Weather and Metcheck, for example. The season for stargazing on Skye is September to mid-April. The months of May, June, and July are not viable - there are no really dark skies due to the very light nights here during late spring and much of the summer.

There are two Dark Sky Discovery Sites very near our bed and breakfast. One is just north of Broadford at Camas na Sgianadin, about a mile or two, in a car park just off the main road. The best viewing from here is to the north west round to the north, east, and south east. (More pictures of Camas na Sgianadin ...). The other, Kinloch Forest, is on the Sleat Road, and is accessed via a turning to Kinloch woods - the track has some potholes so do drive carefully particularly after dark. (More pictures of Kinloch Forest ...). The best viewing from here is to the south east round to the south, west and north west. There is another Dark Sky Discovery Site further south in Sleat, in the grounds of the Clan Donald Centre. This is an easy drive so would be worthwhile visiting too. There is also a Dark Sky Discovery Site at Kylerhea, though this is a formidable drive over a narrow single track road with passing places and very steep in parts. It would not be advisable to use this road during cold weather. The nearby Ashaig campsite (to which our guests have permission to access so long as they do not disturb campers) has excellent dark sky viewing and is currently applying for Dark Sky Discovery Site status.

The croftland immediately behind our B&B also offers fine views of the sky at night. Although there is light pollution from Broadford to the west it is possible to move around the croftland to where it is sheltered out by some trees or by some slight dips in the land. We can show you where. The horizon line is exceptionally low for the Highlands as the mountains are relatively distant and the nearer hills are not too high. The northern constellations are particularly visible with the view to the north over the sea (as in the banner image on the B&B pages).

Due to unpredictable dark sky viewing conditions, we do not recommend that you book your astronomy holiday more than a few days in advance. However, you are welcome to contact us in the meantime and indicate approximately when you would be interested in staying and what your requirements would be.

We also provide some stargazing handbooks for our "Dark Skye" guests.

Camas na Sgianadin Dark Sky Discovery Site

Camas na Sgianadin Dark Sky Discovery Site

Ursa Major from Breakish croftland, Skye

Ursa Major from croftland behind the house. Image taken on a moonlit night and slightly overexposed to show background.

Bootes from Breakish croftland, Skye

Arcturus (Alpha Bootes), lower centre, from the croftland behind the house. Image taken on a moonlit night and slightly overexposed to show the hills and sea in the background.

Camas na Sgianadin, Dark Sky Discovery Site, Car Park

Camas na Sgianadin, Dark Sky Discovery Site, Isle of Skye, Car Park
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Activities | Munro Climbing | Photography Retreats | Scenery | Skye Weddings | Astronomy Holidays | Astronomy Courses