Top 10 things to do on the Isle of Harris

in Winter

Rosie Honeywell

Rosie Honeywell

Published on 26 September 2022

Winter activities Isle of Harris

If you’re thinking about visiting the Isle of Harris (Outer Hebrides, Scotland) in Winter, we have put a list together for you of the top 10 things to do in Winter.

We can only recommend you stay in a luxury Harris holiday home which has all the cosy features that makes a stay on Harris relaxed and memorable, such as a bath, a fire place with seating around it for your whole family, underfloor heating so you can wear only socks and still feel warm, tripple glazed windows so you can see the view and the weather, but you feel snug inside. 

1. Harris Distillery Tour – Tarbert

The Harris Distillery is a great place to spend a rainy afternoon; enjoy drinks (gin is available) and baking in the cafe, browse the shop and if there is space book on a distillery tour. It is very informative and the samples are delicious!

Harris Gin Distillery Tour Isle of Harris, Tarbert

2. A walk on Nisabost beach, coffee at Talla na Mara and a visit to the gallery and shops there

(and charge your EV if you have one)

Nisabost headland is great for a showery walk, as you get some fresh air while knowing the walk is short! Walking a circuit around the headland gives you ever changing views from the North Harris Hills to Taransay and then south to Ceapbhal and the sound of Harris. I love to pop into Talla na Mara afterwards for a coffee, and then look at the art exhibition, before visiting the chocolate shop and the two art galleries outside.

Nisabost, Best Beach Isle of Harris

3. Visit the Harris Tweed Shop in Tarbert

You can visit the Harris Tweed shops in Tarbert (just opposite Harris Distillery), or check out the Harris Tweed Exhibition in Drinishader. 

Watch tweed being made e.g. Rebecca Hutton

Rebecca Hutton is a very talented weaver located in Northton and she is more then happy to give demonstrations and talk about her craft. Drop her an email to make sure she is in.

Harris Tweed Exhibition Isle of Harris

4. A day-trip to the Callanish Standing Stones

Visit the historic standing stones at Callanish on the Isle of Lewis. There is parking available, a coffee shop serving amazing coffee and cakes and a well-stocked souvenir shop for picking a gift for a friend at home or yourself. 

Callanish Standing Stones Isle of Lewis

5. Visit Mangersta on the Isle of Lewis

Especially in winter, Mangersta on the Isle of Lewis will be particularly spectacular. The waves crashing against the sea stacks and wind blowing relentlessly from the Atlantic will make you appreciate nature in its full force. 

Mangersta is located on the west coast of the Isle of Lewis and as you drive there, the countryside is deserted. Plan about an hour to get there from Stornoway. Especially in winter, there won’t be many people, so parking will be easy on the roadside.

Mangersta Isle of Lewis

6. Visit Stornoway for shops, coffee and a visit to the new spa

Pamper yourself with trip to the spa – followed by some shopping in Stornoway. Make sure to visit Sandwick Bay Living, Influence, Delights, Artizan and the other independent shops.

As you head home don’t forget to stop at Charlie Barleys for the famous Black Pudding.

We also highly recommend stopping at Crust for pizza on the drive back to Harris.

7. Explore the beach

Spend an afternoon on the beach, feel the wind in your face and watch the waves rolling in from the Atlantic. You can look for sea shells or just walk the dogs. After a long beach walk, a hot chocolate tastes twice as good!

Scarista Beach View from Oran Na Mara

8. Golden Road & Seals

Drive down the Golden Road and do a full circle. You will drive past galleries, you can enjoy Harris’ wilderness and spot seals on the rocks. 

Golden Road Seals Isle of Harris

9. Sunsets – perfect for photos

During the winter months, sunset is much earlier. You can spend a bit of time on the beach taking photos of the sun going down. You can use the Photo Ephemeris website to plan where the sun will set and find your perfect spot for taking photographs.

winter photography isle of harris

10. Create your own wall art

Whether you take photos on your mobile phone or with your camera, Harris has got so many colours and textures on offer for you to photograph. There are many different ways to come home with amazing photos, but here are a few suggestions:

  • Visit your favourite beach on Harris and focus on the small things in front of you – the ripples in the sand, the shells, the colours of the sea
  • Visit a local harbour, such as Leverburgh harbour, and take photos of the details there – Lobster Pots, the fishing boats etc.
  • Become a wave fan! The waves on Harris are amazing and you can easily create stunning wall art by taking photos of the waves. The waves are different on every beach, find one that excites you and start taking photos. 


Harris photos

Photography ideas to create your own wall art while you are on holiday on Harris

All photos by Nadin Thomson.