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My Barra beach landing – the day I flew to Barra and landed on the sand! (Part 2)

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This is part two of my review of my trip to the Outer Hebrides, flying with Loganair and landing on the beach at Barra.

Why did I fly to an island in the Outer Hebrides with a population of 1,100?  Because it is the only place in the world with a scheduled flight which lands on a beach.  And who wouldn’t want to try that?

Part one of this review, covering my flight to Barra, is here.

Inside the terminal

I thought it best to find out where I needed to check-in for my return flight.  It wasn’t difficult, given that the terminal is about 100 feet x 30 feet:

Flying to Barra in the Outer Hebrides

I didn’t get a photograph of the cafe counter, which was a mistake.  The cafe is excellent.  I had a plate of scampi and chips, all cooked to order, for £8.  If I had a cafe like this on my street I would be in there all the time!  Once I had arrived, all of the cafe customers got up to board the plane for its return trip to Glasgow so I had it virtually to myself.

Once I’d eaten I thought I’d check out the local vicinity.  Once you walk out of the door, there is literally nothing to see except hills and scrubland – or so I thought.  This is the terminal from the front:

Flying to Barra in the Outer Hebrides

Turn to face the other way and you see this path:

Flying to Barra in the Outer Hebrides

With half an hour to fill, I thought I’d see where it went.  I was genuinely stunned when, just over the horizon in the picture above, the land dropped down into a beautiful bay:

Flying to Barra in the Outer Hebrides

and

Flying to Barra in the Outer Hebrides

I was utterly, totally alone on a huge beach, on a very cloudy and cold April day.  It was great.

The journey home

When I arrived back at the terminal, my return flight was coming in to land on the beach.  I was lucky and caught it on video.

Flying to Barra in the Outer Hebrides

There is no security at Barra.  Well, there is a door marked ‘Security’ you walk through but that is about it!

I had Seat 2A on the return, another solo seat.  This is one of the best seats for being able to see into the cockpit during the flight – don’t take 1A as you are too close to the bulkhead to see in.

Flying to Barra in the Outer Hebrides

The video shows the take-off.

Flying to Barra in the Outer Hebrides

Around an hour later we landed back in Glasgow, directly on schedule.

Flying to Barra in the Outer Hebrides

If you’re interested in aviation then I thoroughly recommend the flight to Barra.   You may want to stay a bit longer than I did, especially if you go during the Summer, but the quick turnaround worked well for me.  If you pick your dates properly (remember the flight times change with the tide times) it is even possible as a day trip from London.  Four flights in a day seemed a bit excessive to me so I stayed overnight in Glasgow, a city I have rarely visited.

Here is our Barra beach landing video

I shot quite a lot of video during my flights including the landing and take off from the beach – click the image below to view it.  At 7 minutes, it is longer than our usual videos but well worth it, and we didn’t put the usual music on this time!  If you can’t see it, click here to visit the Head for Points YouTube page. You can also subscribe to our channel via that link.

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Comments (21)

  • Alex Sm says:

    No need to apologise for 7-minute video, even those who charge life of others by the hours could find 7 minutes to watch it. At least at 1.5x or 2x speed which YouTube graciously allows

  • RussellH says:

    March / April is NOT the best time to visit Barra, though.
    While Rob mentions the beaches – the sandy one are all up the west coast, while the east coast is dramatic and rocky, and also worth seeing, the unique sight in the Hebrides is when the machair blooms – that is the grass just before the sand itself. Late spring / early summer as I recall.

    While living on the island I also remember thinking that with clever camera angles and a few potted palms you could forget about going to the Caribbean or the Seychelles for fashion shoots, though you would have a problem waiting for the one really sunny day – and the wind free day too.
    🙂