Sunday, 29 July 2012

ISLE OF HARRIS

The Isle of Harris, or South Harris, is not actually an island, being joined to Lewis by a narrow isthmus separating Loch Tarbert from West Loch Tarbert. In fact, the geography of Harris is confusing, because the northern part of it lies on the other side of the isthmus, forming part of the "Isle of Lewis". The main community on the 'Isle' is Tarbert, which has a ferry terminal offering sailings to Uig on Skye. On the southern tip of Harris is the small port of Rodel which is noted for its medieval kirk, the Church of St Clement, built by the MacLeods of Dunvegan and housing three monuments to the family, including one carved from the local black stone known as "gneiss". The other main village on the island is Leverburgh, which has a number of ferries including one to the small island of Berneray. The road which wends its way from Tarbert to Rodel was nicknamed the "golden road" because of the cost of building it. There are some spectacular beaches in South Harris, most notably Seilebost and Scarista. Film director Stanley Kubrick considered the terrain of South Harris other-worldly enough to use it as a double for the surface of Jupiter in his film "2001: A Space Odyssey", although the shots were tinted, so it may not be readily recognisable as Harris.

Map of the area.


Seilebost © 2006 David Crocker, via Wikimedia Commons




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