(Old Norse meaning… House on the headland)
Huisinis is a glorious beach paradise at the end of a long and winding road that takes you through eagle country, past the imposing Ammunsuidhe Castle and along a dramatic landscape of exposed rock, sheltered bays and clusters of habitation. Here you can peek through a window into an important part of Hebridean heritage, and the role of the sea in local people’s lives.
The wooden-clad Gateway building offers gorgeous views, along with some shelter from the weather. From the beach you might spot a seal or two, and a wee walk round the headland will give you great views and further chance to spot some wondrous creatures. Look out for harbour porpoises as their dark backs cut through the sea, or further out where you might spot dolphins frolicking in the waves.
A bit about the site
The North Harris Trust Gateway building is a great space with information about local nature and history. It’s the modern wooden building with large windows looking out over the beach. Most people visiting Husinis will use their own transport and there is parking by the Gateway building and the beach. Please do not park elsewhere along the road or beach. The road is single-track and can get busy during the summer so please take care. The route is a suggested detour from the Hebridean Way, and there is a bus service that runs a couple of times a day.
Local Buses W12 from Tarbert
The Gateway Building has public toilets, showers (coin operated £1 coins) and indoor seating. There is also a small campsite with electric hook ups.
The Gateway building is fully accessible and is situated directly next to the car park.
Wondrous creatures in the waters
Look out for
Whaling in the Hebrides
Huisinis today seems a blissful utopia… but travel a little back along the road, and back a little in time, and these would be treacherous waters for a whale.
The UK’s last whaling station, Bunavoneader was just down the road and closed in 1951. On your way out to Huisinis you will pass a red brick chimney amongst the ruins that mark the remains of this darker time in our past.
Whales and whaling
Although its been nearly 70 years since whales were hunted in these waters, the impact is still felt. Thousands of whales were killed in these seas, massively reducing the populations and making some species a rare sight here in the Hebrides. Whales are long lived and slow to reproduce so although many years have past we are yet to see the populations recover. The North Atlantic right whale got its name for being the ‘right’ whale for whaling - slow moving at the surface and easy hunting. There are now thought to be fewer than 450 of this species left in the world, and they are almost never seen from these shores today.