South Uist, one of the islands in the Outer Hebrides, is situated off the West coast of Scotland. Between Barra to the South and Benbecula to the North, South Uist is the second largest of the Western Isles islands, at 22 miles long and 7 miles wide.
What’s South Uist Like?
South Uist’s mountainous heather upland areas are surrounded by a coastline of clear water and 20 miles of sandy beaches – and it is this contrast which makes South Uist so interesting. Linked to Eriksay and Benbecula via causeways, the land on South Uist is predominantly flat and fertile, though the East coast does possess peaks and mountains.
The island’s main village is Lochboisdale, where the port to Oban is located. Its history as a major herring port is behind it, but the large number of Gaelic speakers, and the still-practised tradition of seaweed gathering are just some indicators that the island has retained many elements of the traditional Scottish island life.
Features of South Uist
The natural beauty of the island makes it a perfect location for many outdoor activities such as walking and fishing for brown trout, and wildlife watching is also very popular here. The nature Reserve at Loch Druidibeg covers the varied habitats of machair, boglands, estuaries, moorland and loch. Many rare plants and interesting birds, including corncrake and the golden eagle, but also cormorants and other wading birds make South Uist their home. Controversial is the relatively recent introduction of hedgehogs, which do not have any natural predators here, and are definitely thriving. But other wildlife – red deer, otters, grey seals to name but a few, thrive too.
South Uist is proud to offer its visitors a golf course at Askernish which is a very natural course. It was created in 1891, but the 18-hole course is newly reopened and highly acclaimed.
South Uist has a lot to offer visitors interested in its ancient history as there are many archeological sites on the island and Cladh Hallan is the only site in the UK where prehistoric mummies have been found – four skeletons were discovered that had clearly been preserved in a peat bog for many months. Other sites of interest include Neolithic settlements, longhouses, and Viking traces (Bornais was a very large Viking settlement). Also, Ardivachar Point to the North West possesses the oldest rocks in Britain. In terms of historic buildings, the ruined Ormaceit Castle (one of the last built in Scotland), was burned in a 1715 fire, and the village of Howmore contains a collection of ruined churches and some traditional thatched buildings.
How to get to South Uist
South Uist is easily accessible to other Hebridean islands on the chain, owing to the causeweays, so makes a great location for a family holiday or a couples get away. Arrival at South Uist is generally by scheduled ferry from Oban. The nearest airport at Benbecula, is accessible via road for those travellers who prefer to fly.
Where to stay in South Uist
Our delightful properties on South Uist will ensure that the holidaymaker visitor to these gorgeous islands will find comfort and relaxation following their day of activity on the island. South Uist and the neighbouring islands offer largely self-catering holiday cottages, hotels or bed and breakfasts, set within incredible landscapes. Why not explore our list of beautiful, distinctive and interesting properties below?