Here's an interesting beach picture from Flickr user Bluewave. It's of a beach in Lewis; the one at Melabost to be precise:
Look on the horizon. Each one of those dots is actually a house. Some will be deserted; some will be second homes (let out as holiday homes, or just empty for most of the year); the rest will be lived in. Most of the population of the Outer Hebrides reside in Lewis, which around the northwest coast is surprisingly populated in places.