Thursday, 9 July 2015

The Woodlands Centre, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis

The Woodlands Centre overlooks Stornoway inner harbour beside Lews Castle Green.  This is the ideal place to both start and finish an exploration of the Castle Grounds.  The centre offers relaxing woodland surroundings along with wonderful food and drink, home baking (including their delectable Florentines), gifts and crafts, natural and local history displays and a deck area for warmer days.  The Centre is open throughout the year from 9am to 5pm Monday to Saturday, with the last orders in the café being taken at 4.30pm.

The King and Queen from the Isle of Lewis chess set guard the entrance to the Woodlands car park.

The Berserker, my favourite piece, guards the door to the café and gift shop.

Inside the café these wooden carvings are new since my last visit.


  1. Interesting. I like the first wooden carving inside the cafe. The face is very detailed.

  2. These are gorgeous photos, John. Love hearing more about the Chessmen. I read Peter Mays books about Lewis, incl. the one called The Chess Men. Fascinating.

    1. You are one up on me, Carol. I haven't read 'The Chess Men'.

  3. Love the Berserker, and the Queen in Shock. 8-)

  4. Wow, interesting. I just read your blog post about these chess pieces, amazing how old they are and how they must have traveled the northern seas!

    The Berserker, guard I think a funny one: it looks as if he's eating (or at least chewing) his shield!

  5. It looks like an enjoyable outing! And what an amazing chess set.

  6. I'm really enjoying this series of post, CJ. Really whetting my appetite to see it all.

  7. From your description (homebaking...!), the Woodlands Centre does indeed sound like the perfect place to start or end an excursion. Not sure I'd feel very comfortable being watched by the stern faces of the Chess figures all the time, though, while eating the excellent food...

  8. I love the little fella hiding in the tree trunk.

  9. What an intriguing piece of history with the ChessMen...enjoyed your blog link with all the details.
    I find it amazing that they were carved and transported to the Isle of Lewis so so far away.
    It's great to see GB's part of the world from your eyes...I am really enjoying these posts.

  10. There is something very homely about the Woodlands Centre that makes it, for me, the almost perfect place to meet friends for coffee.


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