16 Weird Places In Scotland That Are Straight Out Of A Sci-Fi Movie
Who needs Mars? We've got Stac Pollaidh.
1. The Sanctuary, Skye
This series of incredible, weirdly-shaped rocky pinnacles, which includes the famous Old Man of Storr, were used as the setting for several scenes of the 2012 Ridley Scott sci-fi movie Prometheus. They're actually the remains of ancient gyrolite landslips.
2. An Teallach, Dundonnell
The name of this stunning mountain means "the hearthstone of the forge" in Gaelic. It takes its name from the incredible, burning, lava-like glow of the red sandstone when the dawn sun strikes it in August. If it wasn't for the water it could definitely pass for Mars.
3. St. Kilda
The isolated, dramatic archipelago of St. Kilda is the most remote part of the British Isles, and lies 41 miles west of Benbecula in the Outer Hebrides. It's no longer inhabited: The last inhabitants left in 1930, leaving their oddly-shaped stone walls and strange, beehive-like shelters behind them like the remains of a lost civilization.
4. Finnich Glen and the Devil's Pulpit, Drymen
This dramatic, 100-foot deep gorge in the west of Scotland looks like a gateway to another dimension, largely thanks to the rocks that jut up through the surface of the water and create stunning eddies and whirlpools. It's definitely out of this world.
5. The Quiraing, Skye
This incredible landscape surrounding The Sanctuary also served as a filming location for Prometheus, and the sword-fighting sequence from Highlander was filmed on the Quiraing's cliffs as well. It's part of the wild, beautiful Trotternish Peninsula.
6. Suilven and Stac Pollaidh
No, this isn't an alien planet (honestly), it's actually Stac Pollaidh and its neighbour Suilven, two unusually-shaped red sandstone mountains in Sutherland in the north of Scotland. You half expect the Mars Lunar Rover to come inching over the horizon.
7. Sron na Creise, Glen Etive
No, this isn't the ice planet of Hoth, it's actually Sron na Creise, which means "narrow point" in Gaelic. It reaches a lofty height of 1100 metres, meaning that it's often covered in deep snow, and its remoteness makes it look downright otherworldly.
8. Beinn Alligin in Wester Ross.
Beinn Alligin means "jewelled hill" in Gaelic, and you can see why. It's surrounded by unusual bands of sedimentary rock that give it a strange, bumpy, patterned appearance. In short, it definitely doesn't look like an ordinary mountain.
9. The Isle of Staffa
Staffa's name means "Pillar Island". It's covered in strangely-shaped basalt rock formations and columns, the most impressive of which can be found in Fingal's Cave: A huge, echoing, vaulted chamber that was created by the action of the waves on the soft volcanic rock millions of years ago.
10. Sgùrr Thearlaich, Isle of Skye
This incredible mountain in the Cuillins is pretty hard to get up as it's covered in loose, rocky scree (also known as the Great Stone Chute). But if you manage it you reach Coire Lagan, a spectacular, hidden volcanic mountain loch ringed with huge rocky peaks.
11. The Stacks of Duncansby, John o' Groats
These bizarre sea stacks in the far north of Scotland look like somewhere a Jedi might hide out, but they're actually home to hundreds of nesting sea birds like guillemots, fulmars, razorbills, and gannets (not Luke Skywalker).
12. The Saddle and Forcan Ridge, Glen Shiel
This beautiful mountain is known as The Saddle due to its unusual, undulating, craggy shape, which makes it look a bit like the floating hills in Avatar. It's considered to be one of the most challenging munros in Scotland, and the complex, rocky Forcan Ridge is particularly difficult to traverse, but it's well worth the effort for the amazing views.
13. The Fairy Pools, Isle of Skye
This stunning, unique series of blue-green rock pools in the glacial Glen Brittle have a truly strange and otherworldly air to them. They flow from the Black Cuillin mountains so they're icy cold, but that doesn't stop wild swimmers regularly taking a dip.
14. Glen Coe
The most famous valley in Scotland doesn't need much introduction. It's a place of towering mountains that give it a feeling of grim grandeur, and you feel completely dwarfed as you pass through. It's certainly like nowhere else on Earth, especially in winter.
15. Goat Fell, Isle of Arran
Goat Fell is a small mountain, famous for its large granite boulders that cover the hillside, as well as the many wrinkles and cracks in its rocky landscape. It's name is Gaoda Bheinn in Gaelic, which is thought to mean "Mountain of the Wind."
16. Buachaille Etive Mor
The truly incredible Buachaille Etive Mor – The Great Herdsman Of Etive – definitely doesn't look like it belongs on Earth. It's sharp, angled peak is almost pyramid shaped, and dominates the horizon for miles around. If aliens ever visit us, they'll definitely land here.