Loch Around, We're In Scotland

Dornie Travel Blog

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In front of the Falkirk Wheel in Falkirk

It was freezing when we turned up to the Bunkhouse and the temperature gauge on the car had dropped below 3 degrees. Yes it was a touch on the chilly side, but no matter we had arrived at our accommodation where it was going to be warm and toasty inside and a chance for a hot shower to defrost ourselves. Best of all it was cheap, only £10 per night and it included farm fresh eggs for breakfast the next day.

 

As we were driving down the little country lane to get to our cheap accommodation I was amazed at how beautiful the scenery was, the area was so remote and untouched you felt like you were the only ones in the world. The drive was long and winding, corner after corner, driving over one lane bridges and stopping in the passing bays to take in the sites, we really were a long way from anywhere but I was confident driving next to this loch that it would be Loch Long before we would reach our destination.

View from Stirling Castle

 

Disappointment could be a term to use once we arrived, as could fear. I’ll set the scene. It was raining, not heavily but a misty rain that seemed to have followed us throughout the day. We were cold and wet and after finally finding the property, we had to walk past a shed, which had firewood and an axe sitting there. Now being someone who has a vivid imagination this made me think of all the horror movies I never dared to watch, especially those of axe men but it was ok, I was going to step into the warmth and safety of the cottage, it was going to be fine.

 

After opening the creaky door expectantly waiting for the warmth from the roaring fire to hit us as we stepped inside, meant we were disappointed.

Jumping for Joy in front of Robert the Bruce at Bannockburn (just outside of Stirling)
In fact quite the opposite greeted us, the lights were off, there was no one around and it was just as cold inside as it was out - not a pleasant place to spend the evening. After letting my imagination get away with me, we moved on. Visions of being chased around the bunkhouse by an axe men in a frenzied attack meant I caved and decided to upgrade to a place which had heating and a place you didn’t need to pay for firewood to light the fire or pay for showers. Better still the upgraded property had no sign of an axe, which meant I could sleep soundly that night.

 

It was a good decision, driving back up the country lane for seven miles meant we were getting closer to ‘civilisation’ and closer to the castle we had visited earlier in the day.

Our useful Satnav we named Islay

 

The site of Eilean Donan Castle had mention of a fortified structure in the 13th century but fell into disrepair over the centuries until finally undergoing restoration in 1911 by Lt Colonel John Macrae-Gilstrap. You can visit the castle, going inside, see the displays and even take in a walk around the grounds. Entry was £4.50 (student price) and I thought it was well worth it. It’s not often you get to walk through a castle, and I really enjoyed that it had been a Hollywood set years ago for the Highlander movie in 1983. The classic movie had the impressive Scottish actor Sean Connery playing a Portuguese national with a thick Scottish accent. To say I am a huge 80’s movie fan is an understatement.

 

Moreover, this movie opened up my eyes to the Scottish accent.

Cute little Scottish housie
But there are some accents around these parts where you need to fully focus to understand; well this is especially true with the broad accents around Glasgow. However, the Scottish people are very friendly whether you understand them or not and this was shown to me when driving around the area of Glencoe. Stopping to refuel I got told that a man had fallen in love with me. That was nice and I like how I had that much power over men. (Well one can dream can’t I?) This sort of thing never happened at home. Perhaps since Highlander was such a box-office success, perhaps my brief encounter at a petrol station could make for a nice film story line as well? Yes I was in romantic Scotland and Loch was all around.

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In front of the Falkirk Wheel in F…
In front of the Falkirk Wheel in …
View from Stirling Castle
View from Stirling Castle
Jumping for Joy in front of Robert…
Jumping for Joy in front of Rober…
Our useful Satnav we named Islay
Our useful Satnav we named Islay
Cute little Scottish housie
Cute little Scottish housie
Driving through Glencoe
Driving through Glencoe
In front of Eilean Donan Casle
In front of Eilean Donan Casle
Dornie
photo by: mountaingirl