The sand of barrier islands is conserved even during storms, as it's pushed landwards, in the process creating the machairs
, where most farming on the islands takes place.
Many islands have natural beauty, but I've yet to see anything to compare with the beaches of Harris, the multi-hued spring wild flowers on the machairs
of Uist, or great natural vistas like the Cuillins as seen from Elgol on Skye.
The Hebrides Islands, lying to the west, have a range of geological features, from mountains to machairs
(level plains of green turf on fertile layers of sand).