Coordinates: 57°38′27″N 6°16′26″W / 57.64083°N 6.27389°W / 57.64083; -6.27389
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

View towards the Quiraing

The Quiraing (Scottish Gaelic: Cuith-Raing)[1] is a landform on the eastern face of Meall na Suiramach, the northernmost summit of the Trotternish escarpment on the Isle of Skye, Scotland. It takes the form of a craterous hollow surrounded by a high rampart of rock.[2] Within the hollow is a raised plateau the size of a football field, known as the Table. Other distinctive features of the landscape are the Needle, a jagged pinnacle rising to 120 feet (37 m), and the Prison, a mass of rock resembling a medieval keep.[3][4]

Like the rest of the Trotternish escarpment, the Quiraing was formed when a thick layer of flood basalt spread over the peninsula and destabilized the weak sedimentary rocks below, causing a succession of landslides.[5] It has been renowned for its fantastical appearance since the Victorian period. The poet Alexander Smith dubbed it "a nightmare of nature".[6]


  1. ^ Henderson, George (1910). The Norse Influence on Celtic Scotland. Glasgow: James MacLehose. p. 61.
  2. ^ Groomes, Francis H. (n.d.). Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland: A Survey of Scottish Topography, Statistical, Biographical, and Historical. Vol. 5 (2nd ed.). London: William Mackenzie. pp. 231–232.
  3. ^ Townsend, Chris (2001). Collins Rambler's Guide: Isle of Skye. London: HarperCollins. pp. 55–59. ISBN 978-0-00-220200-8.
  4. ^ McKelvie, Robin and Jenny (2011). National Geographic Traveler: Scotland. Washington: National Geographic. pp. 234–235. ISBN 978-1-4262-0671-9.
  5. ^ Ballantyne, Colin K. (2008). "Scottish landform examples – 2: The landslides of Trotternish, Isle of Skye". Scottish Geographical Magazine. 107 (2): 130–135. doi:10.1080/00369229118736821.
  6. ^ Smith, Alexander (1866). A Summer in Skye. London and New York: Alexander Strahan. p. 232.

External links[edit]

  • Media related to Quiraing at Wikimedia Commons

57°38′27″N 6°16′26″W / 57.64083°N 6.27389°W / 57.64083; -6.27389