The village of Garenin (Gearrannan) is a traditional cluster of Scottish style houses on the Isle of Lewis, the largest islands of the Hebrides. This archipelago stands out from the west coast of Scotland and is the last piece of dry land before the Atlantic Ocean.

Dry stone walls and thatched roofs are typical for local houses which used to be shelters from Atlantic storms for the inhabitants of the island and their animals. Today, after carrying out large-scale repair work, any adventurous tourist wishing to enjoy the beauty of island life, may rent one of these houses.

Traditional stone houses were built at the end of the XIX century. This place is also known as Blackhouse village

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Photo: Olaf Rieder, from Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)

 

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Photo: Dorothea Witter-Rieder, from Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)

 

Black stone buildings of Garenin, that once adorned the landscape of the Hebrides, served as a refuge for shepherds throughout the centuries. There was only one room inside where both people and animals accommodated. A fire was burning in the center of the room to warm the whole house quickly.

People used to live here up to the end of ’70s

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Photo: Olaf Rieder, from Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)

 

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Photo: Andrew Bennett / flickr (CC BY 2.0)

 

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Photo: CaptainOates / flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Electricity and drinking water inside the houses appeared between 1945 and 1965. In the late ’70s several elderly residents who were still in the village decided to live in more modern houses with lots of amenities.

Beyond is only the Atlantic ocean

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Photo: rumer279 / flickr (CC BY 2.0)

 

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Photo: travelmag.com (CC BY 2.0)

 

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Photo: travelmag.com (CC BY 2.0)

 

And then the village of Garenin started its slow decline. It seemed to be the end of this traditional corner of the island and the cozy traditional cottages would soon turn into piles of rubbish.

To prevent this, in 1989 a large-scale reconstruction project was launched, as a result of which famous black stone houses got back their former glory.

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Photo: Dorothea Witter-Rieder, from Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)


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Photo: Reading Tom / flickr (CC BY 2.0)

 

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Photo: Reading Tom / flickr (CC BY 2.0)

 

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Photo: Lindy Buckley / flickr (CC BY 2.0)

 

Today this is an accommodation tourists that can be rented. In each house the name of its former owner is pointed out.

Nowadays interior of a house, which anyone can rent, looks like this

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Photo: Dorothea Witter-Rieder, from Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)

 

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Photo: Dorothea Witter-Rieder, from Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)


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Photo: travelmag.com (CC BY 2.0)

 

For those who adore Scottish coastal landscape, silence, tradition and nature, it is a unique opportunity to get acquainted with the life of people who lived there for many years.

And if you go outside the village, you can enjoy an amazing panorama!

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Photo: Reading Tom / flickr (CC BY 2.0)

 

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Photo: Chris Fleming / flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

 

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Photo: Dorothea Witter-Rieder, from Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Based on: curioctopus.it

Village of Garenin on map: