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How to Win at Instagram on your trip to Scotland's west coast islands
The Small Isles from Mallaig
Because even on holiday, always be gramming
Got phone, must Instagram! Snap your way successfully around Scotland's western islands with these tips for Instant Instagram fame.
Firstly, pick your destination and hop on a ferry. Then find the most picturesque scenes where you are. This should be easy, as there's a fair few places that look amazing – and not just on your phone.
First, there are the classics, straight out of the tourist brochures. Like the multi-coloured houses of Portree on Skye.
steffi (@steffi.iii) on Instagram: "Für @birschi 😉 #portree #portreeharbour #fishing #fishingboats #harbour #boats #isleofskye #skye…"
Or Calanais standing stones on Lewis, as seen in Pixar's Brave.
Andrew Walker (@andyjanwalker) on Instagram: "A memory of our Callanish trip #callanish #hebrides #scotland #history"
There are loads of quirky sights and attractions that you won't be able to resist sharing photos of, like a passing place on a busy road on Harris.
Iain M Todd (@imacivertodd) on Instagram: "When the suns out there's nowhere better than harris. #isleofharris #hebrides #scotland #landscape"
Or a phone box in a picturesque setting.
Andrew Walker (@andyjanwalker) on Instagram: "Hebridean scene #lewisandharris #hebrides #scotland"
But for your first steps to Instagram success, you should really pick a theme. Like beaches. Who doesn't love a white sand and turquoise sea beach? How about a strand that's straight out of Sardinia? This one, Kiloran Beach on Colonsay, might do the job.
Kiki Hodgson (@angelstoresuk) on Instagram: "Beautiful green seas! #Colonsay #beachlife #islandlife #holidays #visitScotland"
Or this beaut on Barbados – sorry, Vatersay.
Amy Walters (@amyalisha) on Instagram: "Keeping this in my mind for when I need it in January. 😎 #outerhebrides #vatersay #visitscotland"
As well as beaches, sunsets are always popular with the lovers of Instagram. The sun, setting in the west as it does, makes for a pretty special sight as it sinks into the Atlantic over the Hebrides.
Paul Howie Photography (@paul_howie_photography) on Instagram: "Outer Hebrides Sunset #sunset #adventure #peak360creative #outerhebrides #isleofskye #climbing…"
For bonus likes, annotate your sunset with an inspirational quote you've nicked from a spiritual guidance book on page four of the Google results.
For a few photos, you'll need to work at it and actually go out on location. Instagramming your plate of seafood just won't cut it. Get out there, climb a munro and pray for that mythical clear day when you're meant to be able to see Ben Nevis / Ireland / America. It happens roughly once a year, apparently.
Goat Fell on Arran is rather awesome, when it's sunny:
@aliboyd94 on Instagram: "☀️☀️☀️"
Even when you can't see Ireland.
Nicole McClure (@nicoletroymcclure) on Instagram: "Goat fell picnic ! 🐐 #arran #goatfell #uphigh"
A selfie at the top is not enough. It's practically de rigeur to perch atop a precarious rock to look like you go rock climbing for kicks…
Calum Maclean (@caldamac) on Instagram: "143/365 There can be only one! I am now in love with the Cuillin! We climbed up onto Cioch, shout…"
…even if you've somehow managed to sweat and swear all the way up there in a totally inappropriate pair of trainers. Which are now ruined.
Katie Rata (@katie_rata) on Instagram: "After a week of walking in the western isles of scotland I'm getting used to running away from…"
When the weather is rubbish – it's Scotland, it happens – embrace it. Bad weather equals good photo. Picturesque becomes 'atmospheric'.
Jake (@jakehalliday01) on Instagram: "Striding out for the skinny dip #focussedonthegreen #vatersaybeach #diptime #whatabeach #easter…"
Blue skies are boring anyway. Beaches look better in black.
And of course, you can model this season's beachwear.
Leigh Marshall (@poweredbyoats) on Instagram: "Of course I had to take a selfie 🤳😝fairly sure that pocket isn't meant for 🍌but they fit perfectly…"
If you're still struggling for Instagram fame, layer up the hashtaggable elements. So if you're going to the trouble of climbing a mountain, at least take your best friend for extra #dogsofinstagram appeal.
Seriously, this wee spaniel should get all the treats.
Ceire Murray 🐯 (@ceiremurray) on Instagram: "My little hiking dog 🐶🏔♥️ #flynn #cockerspaniel #dogsofinstagram"
Forget mountains – just take your dog to the beach.
Kassie Andrews (@kassieandrews) on Instagram: "Dukes favourite place! #islandHopping #honeymoon #hebrides #luskentyrebeach #greatDane #dukethedane…"
Cute animals are always a winner, be they dogs, or adorable Highland coos…
David Cooper (@davidcooperoo) on Instagram: "One two coo #isleofmull #highlandsandislands #hebrides #hairycoo #scotland"
…or the local wildlife…
Jared (@jaredtraveling) on Instagram: "Enjoying an afternoon picnic with some puffins on Lunga Island today. These little guys are…"
…sorry, we meant these.
Rachel (@goldsoundz12) on Instagram: "Puffin love. Taken at Staffa 2015."
And at the very least, get a pic you and your pals looking like you're in a band promo shot.
Patrick Bing (@patesup) on Instagram: "2 day Islay Trip.#whisky #peated #scotch #islay #roadtrip #wanderlust"