“St Kilda has always been the Holy Grail of Scotish Islands to visit. Because of it’s remoteness and inaccessibility, it has always been difficult to get to and maybe more importantly, spend time on. However, over the last couple of years there have been a few companies prepared to offer day trips to this most life-changing of Scottish Islands.
Watching old video’s of St Kildan’s completing their everyday tasks, brings home how much of a harsh existence the St Kildan’s had until their evacuation in 1930. There is now a museum at Village Bay and you can visit the School and Church, as well as The Street (see phot0 above).
There are other remote, inaccesible islands such as North Rona, but none have the mystery and solitude attached to St Kilda. An island you will never forget …”
How do I get to St Kilda? To get to St Kilda you need to book with a specialist tour operator. Day trips are available with Sea Harris on Harris, Kilda Cruises on Harris and Sea Trek on Lewis. There are also longer cruises to St Kilda available from Island Cruising on Lewis, Wilderness Scotland and Northern Light Charters. It is also possible to apply to join a National Trust for Scotland (NTS) work party for 2 weeks between May and June each year. They complete general maintenance tasks around the island.
How do I get around St Kilda? On foot. There are no roads on St Kilda, but there are pathways and guided walks to follow. There is also a Ranger on St Kilda who meets all visitors who arrive by boat.
What’s worth visiting on St Kilda? St Kilda is actually an archipelago and consists of Hirta (the main island), Soay, Boreray, Dun, Stac An Armin, Stac Lee and Stac Levenish. The main attraction on Hirta is Village Bay. This was where the previous occupants used to live before the evacuation in 1930. It is possible to visit the School, Church and Feather Store. There is also a Museum with a permanent exhibition of St Kildan Life. There are also various archaeological sites worth discovering around the island including a possible burial structure dating from the Bronze Age. The other main islands in the St Kilda group, Soay and Boreray, are also worth visiting, although it is very difficult to land. Difficult to miss on the island are Soay sheep, a unique primitive breed dating back to the Bronze Age. Also worth visiting is The Lover’s Stone, where St Kildan men balanced on the edge to prove their prowess on the rocks and hence their ability to support a family.
Where can I stay on St Kilda? if you are on one of the working parties, there is accommodation provided in male and female dormitories in the restored houses in Village Street. There is no other accommodation for visitors on the island except for a small campsite with room for a maximum of 6 people. Visitors may stay for up to 5 nights. They have shared use of an ablutions block with showers and toilets and access to a drinking water quality water supply, there is no access to an electricity supply, except by prior arrangement. Booking is essential and to check availability you will need to contact the National Trust for Scotland.
Any other information on St Kilda? St Kilda is one of the UK’s most important heritage sites. It is the UK’s only Mixed World Heritage Site, renowned for both its outstanding natural and cultural heritage. There are only 25 sites in the world with both natural and cultural listing status.
[googlemap address=”st kilda, scotland” width=”600″ height=”340″ position=”left”]