on landscape The online magazine for landscape photographers

Eigg without Rùm

Exploring the Island

Harvey Lloyd-Thomas

A photographer who enjoys exploring wilder and remoter landscapes, searching out unseen details, while attempting the occasional photographic vista. Also partial to the odd image of rust and decay


The island of Eigg is the second largest and most populous of the Small Isles located off the west coast of Scotland south of Skye. From the mainland and arriving by sea Eigg is impossible to mistake with its towering rock prow of volcanic origin: An Sgurr. It is somewhere I have been visiting for the last 15 years and over that time, even though most of my annual visits have only been day trips by boat when staying on Knoydart, I have gradually come to have explored much of the island. With the landscape offering a host of photographic opportunities, both geological and of human occupation since the stone age, culminating with the community buyout of the island in recent times.

Harvey Lloyd Thomas 01-Eigg


Visitors will usually arrive on either the CalMac ferry Lochnevis from Mallaig or the Sheerwater from Arisaig at either the pier or slipway at Galmisdale. Here can be found the island's social hub: The Pier Centre (An Laimhrig) with shop and cafe (and where postcard maps for way-marked trails can be purchased from the craft shop). Galmisdale to the southeast is one of two main centres of population on the island, the other being Cleadale to the northwest, with the road between crossing the notch in the island's profile which may give Eigg its name. A taxi or minibus can be arranged for the journey across the island (bikes can also be hired), but if time and weather permit the hour or so walk is recommended. If walking the detour from the road at the solar farm via the forestry path is recommended. However, forgoing the shortcut across the island I'm going to present a tour roughly circumnavigating the island in a clockwise direction.

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