Mallaig, Port to Skye


Reliance II (C) 2014 by Debi Bradford


Mallaig, a bustling, thriving, incredibly beautiful port, is situated on the north west coast along the famous Road to the Isles.   Very much a working fish port, Mallaig is a fabulous central base by which to explore this area of Scotland.  The ferry to the Isle of Skye runs regularly and the isle is just a short hop across the Sound of Sleat.  Founded in the 1840s, Lord Lovat, owner of North Morar Estate, divided up the farm of Mallaigvaig into seventeen parcels of land and encouraged his tenants to move to the western part of the peninsula and turn to fishing as a way of life.  (



Mallaig, Scotland (C) 2014 by Debi Bradford


The well known Jacobite steam train (featured in the Harry Potter movies) follows the famous Road to the Isles and operates in the summer months from Fort William to Mallaig, calling at Glenfinnan Station where visitors can visit the museum, have a meal in one of the old dining cars and even stay in one of the restored carriages.



The Jacobite Express aka Hogwarts Express (C) 2014 by Debi Bradford


The above photo of the Jacobite Express steam train was taken during a stop at Glenfinnan.  Our guide said he wasn’t certain but “heard” that the train might be making its way through Glenfinnan while we were there.  We were hopeful but doubtful.  Within ten minutes or so we began to hear the puff-puff-puff of the train coming through the mountains.  Finally, it came into view!  Hogwarts Express!



Repairs (C) 2014 by Debi Bradford


Castles and gardens of Scotland were incredible experiences.  However, I found that, for me, the simple pockets of crofts and fishing villages and hamlets spoke to me maybe even more so.  This is real Scotland.  This, these small places teeming with Highlanders and “outlanders” filled my cup to overflowing.



Fisherman and his granddaughter Sculpture, Port of Mallaig (C) 2014 by Debi Bradford

Here you see the statue in Mallaig Harbor of an 8 foot tall fisherman holding a young girl’s hand and pointing out to sea.  This sculpture was given to the port of Mallaig by its sculptor Mark Rogers of Airor in Knoydart.  Mr. Rogers originally used chicken wire base onto which he molded cement to make the figures.  But when he found out the sculptures were going to be erected on Mallaig Pier he cut off the legs and cast them again in concrete in order to withstand the gales.  (Road to the



  1. Stunning Debi!!! It is easy to see your love of the country when you pour your heart and soul into these photographs!!! Happy to see you posted. Warm thoughts for a beautiful weekend! 🙂 ❤

  2. The very first time I took the road to the isles was in about 1964. The road was single track in those days and it felt like we were going to the very edge of the world. I remember the little rocky outcrops sparsely covered in Douglas Firs that poked up through the mist……it was a magical place. Thanks Debi for awakening those memories.
    Your photo of the steam train is ………well, that’s my generation, you see…… special, somehow.

    1. The entire trip to Scotland was, for me, a dream come true. I could write a Scotland post every day and not ever convey exactly how I felt/feel about the magic and grandeur of Scotland. Everything, from countless charming fishing villages, to delightful crofts, to majestic mountains and clear waters everywhere…oh, and let’s not forget the castles and estates and rocky ruins and standing stones and oh, the antiquity of it all. Traveling is a humbling experience as we mere mortals get a grip on just how old society is. America is a mere babe compared to the rest of the world. We’ve a lot to learn.

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