Cycling the Hebridean Way
The remote and spectacular islands of the Outer Hebrides have always been a magnet for cyclists seeking quite roads and a different pace of life. As you wind your way past stunning white shell beaches here at the very edge of Europe, constantly stopping to visit an antiquity or watch eagles soar overhead, you will lose all track of time.
Using ferries and causeways to hop between islands, this popular on-road route begins on the Island of Vatersay at the southern tip of the archipelago and ends 185 miles (297km) later at the Butt of Lewis lighthouse in the far north. There is no danger of getting lost as the route is way-marked throughout its length ever since it was officially adopted as National Cycle Network Route (NCR) 780. However you might need a map to help you plan detours to visit an historic site or reward yourself with a cake stop.
You will get lungs full of fresh air and the scenery that subtly changes along the way is awe-inspiring. In the morning you can be riding beside turquoise seas and passing flower-strewn machair, before heading inland through rugged hills made from Lewisian gneiss which is some of the oldest rocks in the world. But there is absolutely no hurry. This is a journey to savour so take it steady.
Our page on suggested itineraries can help you plan your ride to make the most of the time you have available.
You can also download the Cycling the Hebridean Way leaflet by clicking on the image above.
There are a couple of great books where the Hebridean Way is described in detail together with maps in The Offcomers guide "Cycling the Hebridean Way" and also in the Cicerone guide book, 'Cycling in the Hebrides'.
From Vatersay over the causeway and round the West Coast of Barra
The route mostly follows the main road, with two circular roads used
Follow the route round the west coast and causeway to Grimsay
The route follows round the west coast and north to Bernerary
The route follows the road around the west coast of Harris
The route follows the road via Callanish and northwards to Ness
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