Big country

We travelled from Loch Ness across to Skye yesterday afternoon and boy did this country open up. HUGE mountains that rise up from the road that travels through it. I had my heart in my mouth, tears spilling down. It was just so beautiful. And here we are, seeing it, doing it, driving it, IN IT. We made it to our hotel at the very tip of Skye by late afternoon and settled into the great pub on site – eating some wonderful local langoustines, some local pork (with haggis mash nonetheless), some more board games and some wonderful music by some local young musicians. It was a really beautiful day, a special one for Rob I know, and one that I won’t forget in a hurry.

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We stayed here in case any one asks.

This morning we were up and at it early after a wonderful breakfast – some of the finest bacon, some local smoked salmon, eggs and a pot of this wonderful strong tea – to just around the corner to visit the original Macdonald castle ruins I think at Duntulm Castle?! A beautiful spot with an incessant narration by a 4 year old on the different types of poo that were around (sheep, cow AND rabbit for all those interested).

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From there it was up over the top of Skye and down to the clan Macleod castle – Dunvegan castle for a wander around the beautiful gardens and castle and of course for some lunch. Boy are we getting our sandwich quota up in the UK!

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We then drove south of Skye to Sleat to the Macdonald clan castle ruins and estate where we are staying in the most adorable little log cabins with the most amazing views over the sound of Sleat. Everyone is a little weary so we are in for some home made cooking and an early night I think. Here’s the website of the place we are staying.

There’s something about this place, this country, that is just making my heart ache. It is SO beautiful. It’s ancient, you can feel the history seeping out of the countryside, out of the buildings, out of the friendly people that live here now. It’s an absolute joy and privilege to be here, and I am enjoying every single second.

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  1. Beth – it’s wonderful to read about your travels and even more so when you and your family are having such a wonderful time. Scotland looks haunting and beautiful. Enjoy πŸ™‚

  2. I miss Scotland. The beauty and the history – such an irresistible combination. Every corner and pocket filled up with a compelling story. I could have spent forever there listening to those stories. I’m loving seeing it through your eyes again πŸ™‚

  3. I LOVE these photos, it looks so beautiful. What great memories you will have x

  4. I am SO enjoying your travels! Even the poo! And love to see you in the odd photo or two πŸ™‚

  5. Love that photo of you at the end – you look so happy and relaxed x

  6. Bloody hell, could this get ANY more perfect? Beautiful, stunning, amazing. Scotland has a way with herself, doesn’t she? Loving your pics and stories x

  7. Fiona Guglielmi says

    What a fantastic holiday… Scotland looks amazing.

  8. I am loving hearing about another emotional traveller. I cried about 67 times on our 30 day trip. Only one of those from frustration. The rest from feeling so lucky and so damn happy. Loving seeing the Skye photos. We were supposed to go there but I was ill in the beginning of our trip and we needed to slow the pace a little. I cannot wait for our next UK trip and I am determined to make it there.

  9. Game of Thrones Land! All you need is a bit of John Snow to add to the heart ache πŸ™‚

  10. Yvonne Duke says

    You gave me the shivers there… the photos especially the last 2 !!

  11. Scotland was such a wonderful surprise to me, I didn’t expect to love it as much as I did. Maybe it’s in my Campbell blood (shhh don’t tell Rob I’m really a Campbell).
    So happy you’re having an amazing time. x

  12. Hello crackerjack! That’s a great pic there, loving life and your family and ALL THAT IS!

  13. Christine says

    Beth, thank you so much for sharing!
    I would love to visit Scotland, but fear that I shall have to live vicariously.
    Treasure every moment!

  14. Love the pics of you on the road! I asked my sister if she saw any Loch Ness monsters and she said yes, all 30 of them? Not sure what she meant by that, is there supposedly a certain number there or something?

  15. Just gorgeous Beth! xx

  16. As another Aussie with an anglo-celtic background, I totally understand the physical, visceral reaction to the beautiful and wild landscape in parts of “the old country”. It’s like there’s some genetic memory from ancestors past being re-awakened. I felt that quite strongly in Ireland, where my mum’s ancestors came from. But Scotland too is breathtaking, in a “windswept and interesting” way (sorry Billy Conolly for stealing your line). And the Scots are a proud, independent bunch, so it will be interesting to see if they succeed in seceding from the UK. Such lovely memories you are making, for yourself and your family. Keep enjoying your holiday!

    • It’s interesting isn’t it? My side of the family hails from Ireland and Norway so I’m not sure where this Scotland thing comes from…only that I suspect that both countries are all quite similar. Thanks Trinity πŸ™‚

  17. Vange Langford says

    Loving your holiday, thanks for letting us be spectators and inspiring me to make my own holiday plans for when the baby is a bit older… oh I can’t wait!

  18. Oh my goodness Dunvegan Castle! My girlfriend will be there with her family in a couple of weeks for the Macleod clan get together. Sounds like a huge festival will be had. I will have to send this post to her.

    Take it easy though. I hope you’re finding time for doing some nothing.

  19. Oh wow! I was there in March… a very different colour landscape then πŸ™‚ I drove past your hotel… I had to stay in Portree as everything else was closed until April.

    It’s my most favourite part of the world. I’m so glad you’re loving it too πŸ™‚

  20. I’ve only visited Scotland twice, but both times felt this unexplainable connection to the place. I can’t even begin to describe how Scotland makes me feel: it’s haunting, ancient, awe-inspiring. And yet those words don’t seem to mean ENOUGH. Maybe there’s a connection to Scotland because both my Nan and my Mum were born there. But It seems to have the same effect on everyone, regardless of heritage, so I don’t know. All I know is that I have to go back to Scotland again before my time is up.

    • Its the thin places I am SURE – see my comment below!!!

      • Oh Teresa, that is exactly it! Spot on! I’ve only ever flown over NZ, stopping at the airport on route to the UK, but flying in over NZ into Auckland (I think it was Auckland) just blew my breath away. NZ is definitely on my must see list!

  21. I am really really enjoying your travels and photography and have shared these Edinburgh ones with Facebook family and friends who have been there – they are all reliving their memories now. I have never been, but my hometown in Dunedin NZ, is called the Edinburgh of the South with its strong scottish settlement and historical beautiful buildings and sweeping peninsula. Maybe you can go to Dunedin next in NZ, when you are pining for that sort of beauty…so so delighted for you. and I don’t even know you! Blessings. Many thin places in Scotland I hear – that ancient concept of the veil between heaven and earth being particular thin as transcendence shines through….enjoy!!!!


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