Have you ever experienced a place where all the landscapes described by your fairytales come alive?
When you visit The Fairy Pools in Isle of Skye, Scotland, you can for sure experience the ambience of a magical fairy theme brooding in the place. You can feel like something out of a fantasy novel at the pools.
Also, true to its name, these pools snuggled amidst the Scottish scenery do have a magical charm on its visitors. Trust me, once you get to the spot, you might experience the magical powers it exerts on you.
And this is the ultimate place that allows you to unplug from urban life, plug back into a relaxing life, and find your happy ending.
So, dive into this article to unlock the world of fantasy and magic at the Fairy Pools that await your arrival!
1. Where are the Fairy Pools Located?
These mesmerising pools are located near Glen Brittle, on the Isle of Skye. This is the address for the pools- Isle of Skye IV47 8TA, UK. You can also check out the locale on Google Maps here!
Taking a road trip to the pools by yourself might be harrowing, especially if you have not driven in this terrain of Scotland. You have to take an uphill drive from Carbost town that gradually turns tighter as you scale to higher altitudes.
At some point, you need to drive through some single-track roads uphill. So, ensure not to go too close to the edge to avoid slipping onto the rocky section!
Insider tip: Ensure to stay around Carbost to wake early and be the first to reach the Fairy pools, as it’s just a 15- 20-minute drive uphill. Otherwise, from Portree to Fairy Pools, it usually takes 30 minutes to get there.
If you find self-driving challenging, check out other ways to reach the pools here through public transport or tours!
The fairy pool landscape primarily comprises iconic rock formations formed at the foot of the Black Cuillins mountains. From their bosom arises the crystal-clear blue Fairy Pools cascading on the River Brittle that give the exotic touch of the fairy tale world that is full of magic and wonder.
Today, they are a popular place for tourists to add fairytale moments to their life and their Instagram accounts. A few other globetrotters take a trip to click this rich photogenic place! So how about you?
2. Parking at the Fairy Pools in Isle of Skye
Wow, after conquering the narrow uphill drive, your next challenge is finding a perfect car park!
This might not be a problem if you come early or mid-afternoon. But there is a parking fee of around 5 pounds for just 2 hours.
On the other hand, if you want a car park for your motorhome, then be prepared for an extra parking fee of up to 8 pounds if you are parking below the central Fairy Pools car park.
However, you must not mind walking an extra kilometre as there is a free parking lot further uphill.
3. A Long Time Ago…The Fairy Pools in the Isle of Skye
Here’s some shocking news for you!
The peaceful, serene, magical landscape of the Fairy Pools was once a battleground that had the famous vicious battle of Coire na Creiche fought in 1601.
Since then, history can be traced to this mystical place. The battle was between the MacDonalds of Sleat and MacLeods of Dunvegan, who had a long-time feud with each other.
Laird, a peace lover and a descendant of the McLeod clan, gave his sister as wife to Laird McDonald. The prime motive of the marriage is that they would remain hand fastened for a year.
Unfortunately, the woman never bore a child and went blind in one eye, and McDonald pronounced that she was useless to him. Then he returned her to her brother in the Dunvegan Castle on a one-eyed horse fronting backwards, guided by a one-eyed servant and accompanied by a one-eyed dog.
Now this was a huge insult to McLeod!
As a result, he called for a battle because he was deeply incensed by this treatment of his sister. That’s why it’s also called the Wars of the One-Eyed Woman.
However, the battle failed McLeod as MacDonalds won the battle. Unfortunately, the battle ended in a massive slaughter. A famous Fairy Pools Scotland Legend states that the pools cascaded blood on that particular day of battle!
And this was reported to the Scottish Crown. Horrified, they were forced to call for a truce. King James VI, the ruler then, made the two clans submit to the royal authority and ordered the release of all the captives.
Finally, this was the last clash of clans on the Isle of Skye.
4. How Did the Fairy Pools Get its Name?
Ideally, the name arises because of the blue-turquoise waters fed by a series of waterfalls from the mountain springs. Furthermore, the entire landscape looks enchanting, giving a magical ambience to every visitor who stops by.
On the other hand, the name is synonymous with the myths and legends bubbling forth from the pools.
One of which is the attraction of the selkies, otherwise known as mysterious creatures from Scottish folklore, which people there believe to inhabit the pools.
It is said that these mythological creatures appear in disguise as seals by day at the beach at the foot of Glen Brittle. And during a full moon night, they shed their skins, take a human form, and bathe in these pools.
Sounds mysterious, right?
5. The Best Time to Visit Fairy Pools, Isle of Skye
No matter the tales spun by myths for ages now, it is impossible to deny the beauty of this alluring landscape with its lush greenery, turquoise waters and unique rock formations.
There is no best time to visit the pools as they offer something different each season. But you can make the most of your time, especially during summer and spring. Just as an extra caution, ensure to wear a wetsuit if you plan to swim, as the waters are rarely warm.
And if this is not your travel time, check out the tips to travel in other seasons below;
- Double-check the weather conditions if you plan to hike the place. Wear a rain jacket or poncho with sturdy waterproof shoes if it’s raining or muddy. In rainy weather, ensure to cross the river slowly and carefully.
- Summers might be crowded at the pools (especially at weekends). So, it’s best to take a trip during weekdays. If you want to enjoy alone, book your trip for Fall, during off-seasons. You can even jackpot a parking lot.
- If you are swimming here, it’s actually done at your own risk as there are no lifeguards or staff around here. Ensure to be confident to go on wild swimming in these cold waters.
- Lavatories (open till 5 in the evening) and eateries are available nearby Glenbrittle Campsite Cafe. So don’t litter as you walk to the pools. Toss it into the trash can at the cafe before you leave.
Ensure to enjoy the most there between 7 and 9 am in the morning or 5 and 7 pm in the evening.
6. Embark to the Pools from the Fairy Pools Walk
Once you pay the parking fee, you need to embark on a long walk on a gravel road uphill to the pools. Most of the time, this road is clear to a great extent.
However, you must be aware that you might encounter some stepping stones and river crossings as you tag along the Fairy Pools Walk.
If you take a trip here in bad weather, please be cautious and slower your pace to get through safely without mishaps.
As you go, check out the Walk Slideshow to prepare for the different encounters you might encounter as you put your next foot ahead!
Don’t be alarmed, though, as it’s an easy to moderate long stretch of walk, and the best part is that you can encounter the first waterfalls in just 25 minutes!
Nevertheless, if you wish to spend more time and spot some places to swim, you need to take a 45-minute walk deeper into the place.
You must also note that a dip into the extremely refreshing waters is chilly even during summer, and the rocks can sometimes nip your skin. So, it’s best to wear a suit before jumping in!
Finally, once you enjoy watching the Black Cuillins, the source of the River Brittle, enjoying the Fairy Pools, and exploring the landscape, take the same route back to reach the parking lot.
7. Traveller’s Checklist for the Fairy Pool Walk
Reaching the pools is not strenuous as you think. Having a swimsuit and a towel is fine if you wish to visit them.
But if you want to slip away from the track and explore and make some endless discoveries, your travel bag must contain the following stuff in it:
- A comfy waterproof jacket
- Hiking Boots
- Waterproof day bag
- An umbrella
- Waterproof phone cases
- Plenty of layers
- Dry Robes for entering and leaving the water after a swim
- Portable chargers
- Chilly bottles to keep your water under a consumable temperature
- Repellant wristbands and bug sprays
8. Other Kinds of Stuff to Enjoy Around the Fairy Pools
Don’t be stressed out just gazing at the pools and swimming, as Skye has some fully loaded activities in its surroundings. So, don’t forget to stop by these places before you say goodbye and fairy well to the pools!
8.1 Sligachan Bridge
This teeny-weeny bridge has ranked itself as a national icon!
Nothing so special about it you can consider. However, it’s a star-rated photogenic area and a must-see destination because of its fantastic cover of mountains around it.
8.2 Talisker Beach
The BEST beach in Skye and one of the popular places to visit here. It houses lofty cliffs, a prominent waterfall, and the island’s best sunsets.
8.3 Talisker Distillery
You can also pre-book online to visit the Talisker distillery, one of the three renowned whiskey distilleries found nearby the pools of Carbost on the Isle of Skye. It’s a great addition to your tour here as you can get some facilities to understand whiskey production and taste some blends.
As mentioned earlier, it’s a town just beside the fairy pools with a handful of houses. Here you can find The Oyster Shed, a renowned restaurant in the Skye. Also, don’t miss out on checking out the self-reliant artisans of Caora Dhubh Coffee Company.
8.5 The Cuillins
This is an extraordinary place to get a whole range of highly atmospheric and dramatic mountains in Scotland!
There are hikes available here forever to enjoy the Cullins. Also, this is the place to grab some of the most challenging hikes in the UK.
8.6 Glen Brittle
This is a significant glen located in the Southern Part of the Skye. From here, it runs the streams and waterfalls into the famous Fairy Pools.
This place is predominantly known for its setting beside the mountain peaks, making it the best place for biking and hiking. Also, a forest, beach and campsite are available here to get the best views of the rare flora and fauna and get a chance to do some fishing.
Apart from this short bucket list, if you have more time, do visit Coire Lagan, Sgurr Alasdair, Loch Coruisk, The Skye Trail, Cath Waters Scottish Landscape Art Gallery, The Old Inn, Carbost, Isle of Skye and the Collie and MacKenzie statue.
All these places are just a few kilometres away from the Fairy Pools!
9. An enchanted World Waiting to be Explored
So, now you’ve got everything you need about the Fairy Pools in Skye! It’s such a tremendous place you ought to visit that just getting peep into the landscape through pictures.
Now, are you planning a trip to Scotland, have any questions, or just share your thoughts about the place? Then drop them down in the comment box below. Expecting a reply from us shortly!
And if you want to know anything else over Fairy Pools Skye, we have some personal and realistic juicy articles on our site. Check out the rest of our articles here!
As always, thanks for pinning your eyes in here!
Finally, happy voyages!