In early April I went to Scotland for the first time. I’d heard Scotland was pretty, but I don’t think I had ever fully appreciated the truth of that adjective until I saw the Scottish landscape with my own eyes.
I spent my time in the Highlands, around Loch Ness. For the duration of the holiday I felt like I was living in a National Geographic Magazine double page spread photo. The Loch was vast and beautiful. The mountains were capped in snow with mist rolling down them. It was stunning. The locals were ever so friendly too, which made the experience just perfect.
My family and I chose to stay at little self-catered lodge. We had a private space to ourselves with a view of the mountains and a river. There was also a bird feeder placed by the hot tub so we got to see quite a variety of feathery friends. We took our dog with us and she loved it. (She wasn’t so fond of the nine hour drive from our home to the holiday lodge, though…)
There were quite a few local dog walks nearby, including a squirrel trail and a walk past a waterfall. My dog was most interested in the large quantity of sheep in the local farm fields. I don’t think she, a small town dog, has ever seen so many in her life. She kept just stopping in her tracks to stare at them all.
To get to the closest town we had to get in the car and go on an adventure down some twisty and steep roads, which was fun in itself. My dad was pretty thrilled to be able to drive on those on those roads in his Subaru, which was the perfect car for adventuring in. In Fort Augustus we picked up some goodies, including a little Nessie keyring (I couldn’t got to Loch Ness and not get something related to the legendary Loch Ness Monster) and some groceries.
Once in Fort Augustus we went looking for a way to get out on to Loch Ness itself. Fortunately, we found a tour boat that let us take our dog. We were part of a small group so the tour felt very friendly and personalised. The crew on the boat were great and told us plenty of stories and facts, mixed with great humour.
Another trip we went on was to see Urquhart Castle. I love a bit of history so I purchased the guide book and spent some quality time checking out what’s left of the castle and also taking in the gorgeous views.
I had a magical time in Scotland and I hope I can go back again someday. I haven’t been so relaxed in a long, long time. I listened to my audiobook of The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper throughout which added to the fantastical feel of my trip.
There was so much natural beauty all around me. I almost couldn’t believe that such beauty truly existed, let alone that I had the chance to see it. I took a lot of photos with my camera and I still love looking through them regularly, all these months later. The photos aren’t quite as good as the real thing but the memories attached to them are enough to make me smile.
Until next time, Scotland.