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Address: Lews Castle Grounds, Stornoway HS2 0XS, Scotland
Phone Number:
+44 1851 822746
13:00 - 17:00
Closed now
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Tue - Fri 13:00 - 17:00
Sat 10:00 - 17:00

Located in a modern purpose built extension to the restored Lews Castle,...

Located in a modern purpose built extension to the restored Lews Castle, the new Museum nan Eilean opened on 14 July 2016. Admission is free of charge. This is the first Gaelic led Museum in Europe, with interpretation also provided in English.

Exciting new galleries look at the stories of the Islands and the Islanders. Visitors can:

•Discover the distinctiveness of the Outer Hebrides, shaped by a unique combination of land, sea and people.

•Hear about people’s lives; the diversity of experience, opinion and perception of living life on the Islands.

•Find out how people have lived and worked from the earliest times until the present day and how culture has been and continues to be expressed through the Gaelic language, work, religion, and community life.

•View the Outer Hebrides as never before in a wrap-around audio-visual presentation which takes the visitor on a journey across the islands to experience our natural environment at all times of year, day and night.

Significant loans from National Museums Scotland and the British Museum, including the world-famous Lewis Chessmen, alongside unique items from the local collection set the modern culture of the Islands in the historic context.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 49 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 25
  • 13
    Very good
  • 6
  • 1
  • 3
Interesting Museum

Exciting to see the Lewis Chess Pieces - 800 years old and the oldest pieces ever discovered. Entrance free.

Reviewed 1 week ago
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49 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 48: English reviews
Level Contributor
11 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 days ago NEW via mobile

Really lovley museum and very well looked after !! Staff were kind. Suggest donation if your visiting. There is a starbucks cafe within the building

Thank Beth D
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
713 reviews
419 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 163 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 week ago

I thoroughly enjoyed visiting this museum, although usually I avoid museums. A new venue, lots of interesting information!ation about the Hebrides and of course the Chessmen.

Thank Pam D
Level Contributor
14 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 week ago

Exciting to see the Lewis Chess Pieces - 800 years old and the oldest pieces ever discovered. Entrance free.

Thank RosieandPete
Level Contributor
2 reviews
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

My friends and I are staying at the newly opened and renovated Lewis Castle on Lewis & Harris island in the outer Hebrides. We had a beautifully appointed self catering apartment with views of the sea and harbor, as well as the parkland grounds! It was modern but retained much of the elegance of the original castle. The bedrooms were... More 

Thank Mei Lan W
Chandigarh, India
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Part of the Lews castle grounds, the museum will take 30 mins to an hour to peruse through. Had a nice video room highlighting the weather and the year through the islands and also good displays about early life in the the outer islands. Cafe is just next door.

Thank Natasha_KK
Stornoway, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

I went to the museum but felt that the entrance, beside the courtyard, wasn't too obvious and we went through the courtyard having not realised that the sliding glass doors to the right were for the museum. Inside, I felt the displays were sparse, I feel that the island has more to offer than what was shown. The special display,... More 

Thank Margaretm7088
Nairn, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

An exceptionally well presented and modern museum which is free to visit. The exhibits have been chosen with care and the island story is told using modern visual aids. The Lewis Chessmen are stunning and beautifully presented. The staff were always talking to the visitors and you were made to feel very welcome. One of the best small museums I... More 

Thank Nairnite2017
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

A small but beautifully presented museum with lots of interactive displays. Great to hide out away from the weather!

Thank Caroline P
Aberdeen, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
101 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 April 2017

This is a really nice museum to visit. The architecture is in keeping with the castle. The Lewis Chessmen are the main attraction and the other exhibits are nicely displayed. The audio visual film is also worth a view. Really recommend,

1 Thank Scottax
Level Contributor
688 reviews
348 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 206 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 April 2017

I missed seeing this on my last trip, and now I am glad I waited. The museum is small, but offers a nice view of the world of the Outer Hebrides, including a three-sided video of the islands that was fun - we kept seeing places we'd been. They have also recently added a half-dozen of the Lewis chessmen -... More 

Thank hfulghum

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  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
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  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?