Our guide to Portree

Portree is an historic town, its name thought by many to be derived from the Gaelic Port Righ or King's Harbour, following the 16th century visit of King James V. As the name would suggest, the highlight of Portree is the historic port itself; edged by steep cliffs, bustling with fishing boats and lined by pastel coloured B&Bs and fishing cottages, Portree harbour is widely recognized as one of the most picturesque in Scotland.

On one side of the harbour you'll find The Lump, a rocky peninsula crowned by an old stone folly whilst in the distance across the still waters are the snow-capped heights of the famous Cuillin Mountain range, Skye's tallest peaks. The harbour offers an ideal spot for romantic evening strolls, enjoying the freshest of seafood in one of traditional restaurants or taking a boat-trip out on to the waters yourself in search of the rich sea and birdlife which surround the island and her coastlines.

Despite being no more than a small town, Portree stands as the capital of Skye and the commercial centre for the island and is where you'll find Skye's small collection of shops and services. Most of these, along with a number of bustling pubs are gathered around the charming 18th century Somerled Square which lies at the heart of the town. The square is Portree's focal point and is alive with a hubub of activity throughout the Summer months.

Due to its geographical location roughly in the centre of the Island from North to South, Portree provides an ideal base for those looking to explore the Isle of Skye and its wealth of attractions. To the north of the town you'll find the Trotternish Peninsula home to a number of interesting rock formations including the "Old Man of Storr" and "Kilt Rock" whilst walkers will want to explore the paths winding along the sides of the Cuillin Mountains. Cultural sites not to be missed include the Museum of Island Life which details the island's crofting traditions, the famous Talisker Distillery and Dunvegan Castle and Garden, historic home of the Macleod Clan.

Offering a quaint slice of Scottish island-life and an ideal hub for exploring, Portree is a natural destination for anyone visiting the unmissable Isle of Skye on their tour of the Scotland and her most renowned island.

Related Guides

Relevant Tours

Scotland Tours - Ben Nevis

Explore beyond Scotland's tartan façade where there lies 8,000 years of history and a rich cultural heritage, while the drama and variety of her natural features never fail to impress. Explore the Northern Highlands and Isles of Orkney and Skye on the Country Roads of Scotland Tour which is well paced and offers two-night stays in both Edinburgh and Thurso.

Scotland Tours Loch Awe

The ultimate tour of Scotland, the Scotland Explorer Tour let's you see this beautiful nation in all her glory. From the bustling historic cities of Glasgow, Edinburgh Aberdeen and Inverness to the enchanting landscapes of the remote highlands, the Great Glen, Loch Ness and the Isle of Skye.

Scotland Tours Loch Awe

Journey through majestic Highland scenery and explore Scotland's remote islands on this comprehensive tour of Scotland. Experience the tranquillity of the Isle of Skye, the undiscovered wilderness of the Isle of Arran, the dramatic landscapes of the Northern Highlands and the ancient pre-history of Orkney, not to mention the beautiful city of Edinburgh.

Tours of Scotland

A chance to explore Scotland's glorious and remote countryside including the west coast, the stunning Isle of Skye, the Great Glen and the Capital of the Highlands in Inverness.  On route you'll discover some of the country's finest distilleries and most iconic castles.

Scottish Islands Tour

Escape to an enchanting wilderness as you explore the frontiers of the Scottish nation on her remote outer islands. With raw natural beauty and wildlife in abundance the islands and highlands are also home to a unique and a fascinating history and culture.

More Travel Guides

Contact us