Lonely Planet Writer

Would you visit all of Scotland’s 93 inhabited islands?

Scotland’s natural beauty and incredible history have long drawn in tourists from around the world, but a new plan could encourage travellers to move beyond the mainland and visit all of the country’s 93 inhabited islands.

The Old Man of Storr, Isle of Skye, Scotland. Image by ©Jaroslav Sekeres/Shutterstock

The Highland and Islands Transport Partnership, or Hitrans, is considering creating a new “Scottish Islands Passport”, which would create a guide to the islands where travellers would earn a stamp for each island that they visit. The plan is inspired by Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way, a route that takes travellers along the gorgeous and rugged coastline and has a similar passport on offer.

Lewis in the Outer Hebrides. Image by ©fstopphotography/Getty Images

The plan is designed to encourage more visitors to some of the country’s islands, nearly all of which are accessible by ferry or plane, reports the BBC. Some of those islands include spots like Argyll and Bute and the Orkney Islands, which are lesser visited spots in the country. The Herald Scotland reports that Hitrans has even suggested that the passport could be issued to everyone in Scotland to encourage them to see the islands in their own country.

This won’t be the country’s first tourist trail. There’s the West Highland Way, a long-distance walking path that runs from north of Glasgow to Fort William. For those who like to do their exploring in the car, there’s the North Coast 500, an epic road trip that winds through the most northern region of the country – though the route can be cycled or walked.

Stone circle ‘Ring Of Brodgar’ at sunrise. Image by ©Justin Foulkes/Lonely Planet

There’s also another interesting tourist trail in the works, the Hebridean Whale Trail. The Hebrides include more than 50 inhabited islands – include the famous Isle of Skye – and are great spots for whale and dolphin watching. The trail will create a new network of whale-related sites where travellers can view and learn about the marine life of Scotland’s West Coast.