8 Old Man of Storr Hike Tips To Know Before You Go

Old Man of Storr

The Old Man of Storr hike is one of the most famous in Scotland! Located in the beautiful Isle of Skye, the rock formation and views have been drawing visitors in for years. So what should you know before making the climb up to the Storr? Here are the most important questions answered about the Old Man of Storr hike and all about our recent trip.

8 Old Man of Storr Hike Tips 

1. Why is the Old Man of Storr Famous?

Let’s start off with why it’s such a popular tourist destination in the first place. Like much of the Isle of Skye, the Old Man of Storr is well known for its spectacular scenery. The defining feature is undoubtedly the Storr rock formations which sit at the top. Its name comes from the jagged rocks resembling an old man if you look closely. 

It also goes back to Scottish local legends of giants which can be seen in many other places in nature around the country. While the view from below is certainly stunning, wait until you get up close and personal with the Old Man of Storr! It’s easy to see why this is one of the most photographed landscapes in Europe.

Old Man of Storr Hike

2. Where is the Old Man of Storr Hike?

This unique hike is located on the Trotternish Peninsula of the Isle of Skye. The area brings visitors in during the summer months for its nature trails, glorious scenery, and local specialties. 

The Old Man Storr trail is about a 15 minute drive from Portree which is the largest town in the Isle of Skye. You should also know there is public transport available with a bus that runs on the main road 4 times per day.

Many travelers stay in one of the small towns on the Isle of Skye and take the day trip to see it. On our Scottish Highlands road trip we stayed in the small town of Carbost.

This was close enough that we could wake up early and head straight to the Old Man of Storr car park. It cost a few pounds to leave your car in the small parking area and slightly more for campervans. From there you can start your walk up to the Storr!

We had one full day to explore the Isle of Skye, but there’s enough to see where you could easily spend two or three. You should consider renting a car to give yourself the freedom to get around on your trip to Scotland. This website is where you’ll find the best deals and can compare rates with different companies.

Old Man of Storr Parking Lot Location 

Old Man of Storr Car Park

Old Man of Storr Parking

3. How Long Does it Take to Walk the Old Man of Storr?

So how long should plan to hike to the iconic Old Man of Storr? Well, that all depends on your level of fitness and of course how many photographs you want to take. 

It took us just over two hours to complete with the way up being an hour and 15 minutes of that. Leave yourself plenty of time to take in the beautiful views! 

If possible, stop into a bakery or pack a picnic to enjoy before heading down. It will certainly be hard to find a restaurant that has a better view than the top of the Old Man of Storr.

Also, there is a small snack and coffee stand right across from the parking lot. This is a great place to fuel up before or after your hike.

Old Man of Storr Trail

4. Is the Old Man of Storr Hike Difficult? 

After hiking all over the world from Patagonia to Poland, we would say this wasn’t the hardest we’ve ever done. Yet, be sure to prepare yourself for some serious elevation on the way up to the Old Man of Storr. We did see many young kids making their way up so don’t let it deter you. 

There is a well-marked path that goes from the large car park and zig zags its way up to the peak. Close to the start of the trail it will split in two. This is where you can decide if you want to take the longer (but easier) path or the faster and steeper one.

Halfway thought the hike, the longer and more direct trail join back together. Once the two trails merge back into one there are many many steps that run up the side of the mountain which take you to the top of the hike.

If you’re up for a bit of a longer hike, there is another Old Man of Storr trail which diverges from the main path closer to the top. At the end of the day, the 3.8 km hike wasn’t too bad. Still, it was definitely a great workout!

Old Man of Storr Trail Map

Old Man of Storr Isle of Skye

5. What Should I Pack for the Storr?

If you’ve done any prior research on Scotland then you know it can have some crazy weather! For this reason, you’ll definitely want to pack a raincoat and warm layers even in the peak summer months. This almost goes without saying, but be sure to have decent hiking shoes as well. 

The Old Man of Storr trail is made up of small pebbles and loose rocks which make it easy to slip. We also recommend bringing plenty of water, snacks, and even a packed lunch for the top of the hike.

Hike Old Man Storr

6. When is the Best Time to Hike the Old Man Storr?

The Old Man of Storr hike is open year-round. Yet, the best time to take on this famous trail is during July and August in the summertime. This is when you can experience better weather conditions and hopefully get a clear day.

As we mentioned, on the day we hiked we got there very early in the morning. However, even at 9am in the busy summer months, there were many other travelers.

On our way back down we noticed it was getting even more crowded. This is all the more reason to get there bright and early on your trip to Old Man Storr! 

Best Time to Hike the Old Man Storr

Old Man Storr in Scotland

7. Is the Old Man of Storr Hike Worth It?

Absolutely! The Isle of Skye is one of the most beautiful places in Scotland, and the Old Man Storr is a huge part of that. The entire hike is filled with amazing views that every nature lover will enjoy. From the first stage of the walk to the final approach, we enjoyed every second of this hiking trail.

Is the Old Man of Storr Worth a Visit

8. More Great Hikes & Walks in the Isle of Skye

You could honestly spend days in the Isle of Skye and not run out of great walking trails. Another one of our favorites was the Fairy Pools. This large group of cascading waterfalls is well worth a visit, too! You can even swim in the pools underneath the waterfalls on a hot summer day. 

Other great hikes to include are to the Neist Point Lighthouse, Camasunary Bay, the Quiraing, and Boreraig. There are even scenic walks along the beaches of Talisker, the Point of Sleat, and Coral Beach to check out. 

→ 7 Must Know Tips For the Isle of Skye Fairy Pools in Scotland

Isle of Skye Hike

Have any questions on this article or want to share your own experience on the Old Man of Storr hike? Leave us a comment below!

Safe Travels,
Brigitte & Jake

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Old Man Storr

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