11th June 2018

Cycling The Hebridean Way

The Hebridean Way: add it to your cycling bucket list

Since it’s Bike Week this week we have been thinking about epic cycle routes that everyone should go on. And if you’re thinking of taking on a cycling adventure, the Hebridean Way has got to be considered! It could be a solo expedition, a romantic break or a family holiday.

Hebridean Way | VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

Hosta Beach, North Uist | VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

It’s a long(ish) distance route covering 185 miles (298 km) across the Outer Hebrides. You can do it at a fairly speedy pace of four days or longer, depending on your time restraints, any detours your want to take off the route and how long you want to spend out of the saddle. A word of advice though, when you see the scenery, you’ll want to stop! This is not a route to power through. It is a route to savour. Enjoy the ever changing landscapes, look out for local wildlife and immerse yourself in the history and culture of this remote part of the world.

You’ll cycle through 10 islands and 6 causeways, taking in some of the most spectacular landscapes, geology and wildlife Scotland has to offer.  It follows the National Cycle Network 780 starting on the Isle of Vatersay and ending on the Butt of Lewis as is signposted throughout.

Cycling The Hebridean Way | VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

Cycling The Hebridean Way | VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

The Hebridean Way Route

Starting in Vatersay and cycling through Barra (around 13 miles/12km), you’ll then need to get on the Sound of Barra ferry.

Cycling The Hebridean Way | VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

East beach of Vatersay | VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

Once you’re off the ferry, it’s time to cycle Eriskay and South Uist (around 32 miles/50km).

The Hebridean Way | VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

The ferry on the Isle of Eriksay | VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

Remember to look out for the locals!

VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

Eriskay Ponies

VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

Sign for otters

Benbecula and Grimsay are next and cover 13 miles/21km.

The Hebridean Way | VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

Benbecula | VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

The cycle through North Uist and Berneray is longer, covering 32 miles/51km and ends with a ferry across the Sound of Harris.

The Hebridean Way | VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

Isle of Berneray | VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

You’ll then cycle 33 miles/54km through Harris before heading across Lewis (62 miles/100km) to your end point of the Butt of Lewis (Yes! That is a real place name and it’s ok to laugh about it).

Seilebost, Luskentyre Sands | VisitScotland / Kenny Lam, all rights reserved

Seilebost, Luskentyre Sands

VisitScotland / Paul Tomkins, all rights reserved.

Standing Stone above Tràigh Mhòr at Borvemore

 

 

 

VisitScotland / Kenny Lam, all rights reserved

Gearrannan Blackhouse Village, Isle of Lewis

VisitScotland / Kenny Lam, all rights reserved

The Butt of Lewis Lighthouse

Three Top tips for cycling The Hebridean Way:

  1. Planning your itinerary: The tourist board for the Outer Hebrides has a couple of suggested itineraries and you’ll also need to factor in ferry times. The good news is – bicycles are carried free!
  2. Book your bike in for a service before you go to make sure it’s in tip top condition. Or you could always treat yourself in a brand new bike (you know you want to!)
  3. You’ll need to carry your belongings round with you. Getting a pannier rack fitted (we can do that!) and investing in some panniers is the easiest way to carry loads on your bike.

 

Other cycling adventures:

Cycling Adventure of the Week: Scotland’s North Coast 500

Cycling Adventure of the Week: Lake District to Inverness

The Joys of Bikepacking Microadventures

Anyone Can Go on a Cycling Expedition, And Here’s Why

Shop touring and adventure bikes

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